Crowdfunding is a great tool to raise money for projects by getting a community of backers excited to participate. One of the most powerful tools a crowdfunding project creator has at his or her disposal is the reward program.
A reward program provides incentives to backers of crowdfunding projects by giving them perks depending on how much money they contribute to the project.
There are some interesting answers on Quora that address how to come up with unique and engaging rewards for crowdfunding campaigns.
One such answer comes from Kickstarter's CEO, Yancey Strickler. He breaks down Kickstarter rewards into three different categories:
1. Give a copy of the "thing." Your campaign reward can work much like a pre-order for your book, record, app, gizmo, etc. You then have the capital to finance its production.
2. Share the story Make your backers insiders to your creative process and the project development. Engage them by sending updates, videos, blogs, photos. You may offer them credits in your film or book. Send small items such as props or spare/broken parts and simple tokens that are part of the development story.
3. Creative experiences. Give your backers access to you and participation in the project. Visits to the set or office, going out for coffee or a meal with you or your team, giving them a call. These can be experiences for premium backers who would love to buy a story they can tell their friends about their time with you.
"Every project should benefit its backers just as much as its creator, and it's up to you to define how."
This post addresses the core issues at play in creating a crowdfunding campaign reward program. Beginning with identifying why rewards work, the author of this article breaks out some rewards ideas based on the kind of category of crowdfunding campaign (gaming, tech, etc.)
This article, written for Inc., is authored by the same person who wrote The Crowdfunding Bible. Rather than name specific rewards to use to promote extremely popular crowdfunding campaigns, this article offers a framework of the types of crowdfunding perks.
Crowdfunding Rewards Ideas (Kickstart Your Journey)
Karl Steinmeyer published a list of 101 items, which is no longer online. He had many cheeky items like a virtual hug and kiss or a party bus or night out with the creators or a tree planted in your name. There are also experiences such as a trip to the company headquarters, shadowing the creator for a day, an interview with the company, and a brain-picking session.
How to Structure Your Crowdfunding Rewards Program (ProHatch)
This is a handy article that not only looks at sample ideas to be used for crowdfunding rewards but also how a rewards campaign should be structured from the top-down.
You'll need to identify different tiers of participating that should be rewarded differently. This article helps you put the entire crowdfunding rewards program in perspective.