If 2016 is the year you’re going to finally launch your campaign, raise money online and live your dream, then you’ll be glad you stumbled on our latest article. Full of energy, enthusiasm and some fantastic techniques to help you reach your goals, our little catch up with John Lee Dumas couldn’t have been better timed.
It’s the second week of January, and most of us are starting to lose our grip on those New Years resolutions. Most of us, but not John. This is the year he’s decided to set Kickstarter on fire and by goodness, he’s off to a great start. Having raised $100,000 in a mere 33 hours and smashed his original $25,000 target, this digital savvy DJ (he runs a daily podcast) is now threatening to break Kickstarter records. His funding total is currently sitting at $200,000 and rising, and he’s got a few weeks left on the campaign clock. So how on Earth did he do it?
“I had a great team behind me.” John is happy to admit, “I have the crowdfunding expert Brandon T. Adams working with me, and Tom Morkes, who are experienced at launching books.”
Regular readers of our blog will remember Brandon as the energetic young campaigner even Kickstarter could scupper (they tried their best though). It might make a few of you feel a little better when we tell you this runaway success is John’s first ever campaign. Not that he’s a newcomer when it comes to digital businesses.
Three years ago, John set himself a daily goal of interviewing one entrepreneur. Fulfilling that goal led to the creation of a podcast that has garnered critical acclaim, seven-figure earnings and a following bigger than the population of Dallas. Can you see the theme here? John Lee Dumas has the formula for success down. Luckily for us, he’s bottled (well, bound it).
Enter The Freedom Journal, John’s newest project and the subject of all this Kickstarter success. Borrowing insight from the entrepreneurs on his show, and his own experience developing a digital business and raising money online, The Freedom Journal is a 100-day plan designed to help you achieve your goals, whatever they may be. And what if your goal is to emulate John’s success in the crowdfunding arena? Well, he’s got some tips to help you out with that too.
“Social media is huge; Facebook marketing really has been key to our success. I’ve also promoted the campaign on podcasts and shows besides my own.” He smiles ruefully, “Making sure they aired on day one of the campaigns was a challenge.” A ready-made audience of 1.2 million couldn’t have hurt either?
“Of course I leveraged my audience!” John is happy to admit. “And my friends’ audiences. I asked everyone I could to help spread the word. I also have a guest coming on the show every day for the 33 days the campaign is running. They’ll talk about a particular time they set and accomplish a huge goal, and will hopefully encourage my listeners to back The Freedom Journal and learn how to do the same.”
He also set up some pretty unusual incentives, personally donating $25,000 to the very deserving Pencils of Promise every time his campaign hits a funding goal. “I have already given $25,000 to POP to help build a school in another country. Who knows how many others we’ll have helped by the end of this process.”
It seems to be running a theme with this campaign, the idea of helping people and empowering them to achieve their goals. “That’s one of the reasons I used crowdfunding to raise money.” John agrees, “I knew it would reach a large audience and get national media attention. This campaign was the best way to reach as many people as possible in a short time. Crowdfunding was instrumental in helping me to get the word out there and inspire more people.”
He’s not the first person (or the last) to highlight the advantages crowdfunding offers beyond just raising money online. So, are we likely to see any more potentially record-breaking campaigns from him in the future? John’s a little a cagey about that one, “You’ll just have to wait and see.” Between you and me, I think that means yes.