Real-Time Digital Engagement Meets “Dream” Funding

Posted by
Erin Kang
LivePerson Contributor
Friday, March 29, 2013 - 13:29

At LivePerson, we want to empower businesses of all sizes—even businesses with a team of one. We were particularly inspired by local entrepreneur, Sean Folkson, who had the dream to create a product that could help people combat a very specific health issue—a problem he had personally battled.

Enter NightFood nutrition bars, a better-for-you snack that’s specially formulated to tackle late night hunger, satisfy nighttime cravings, and promote better sleep.  But like many social entrepreneurs and startups with great ideas without the means to bring it to the masses, Sean decided to enter the world of crowdfunding, and enlisted his “dream” on the Indie Go-Go platform.  He had 40 days total (now 18 days as of blog publishing date) to raise funds online -- and he’ll only receive these funds if he hits his minimum threshold of $50,000.

It’s no mystery why Crowdfunding is such a hot topic given that it provides millions of people the unique chance to raise the necessary capital to get a project off the ground.  Through this platform, anyone with a great idea for a product, or passion for a specific cause,  can now have direct access to “crowds” and communities...and their financial resources. But naturally, this innovation is also creating an increasingly crowded marketplace of dreams in need of funds. So what can you do to stand out, and capture the attention of the masses?

Crowdfunding is largely about investing in a person and their dream,” says Sean Folkson, Founder of Nightfood. “I wanted to find a way to have personal conversations with the people who are on my crowdfunding page, people who are potentially investing in my personal dream. For me, live chat was an easy answer. I was able to embed it on my page quickly, and it has enabled me to to connect personally, in real time, with these people.” Crowdfunding platforms today give everyone the same basic set of tools to display, market, and attract investment.  In this increasingly competitive space, LivePerson’s tools gives Sean a creative and leading edge. It gives him the ability to engage and respond to potential investors in real-time, before unanswered questions might drive them away for good, perhaps to other explore other projects.

According to Forbes, the crowdfunding market is expected to hit $3 billion this year. That means there is ripe opportunity for those of you who may have a winning idea or a mission that truly resonates with a greater community. It’s up to you to be creative, and to engage these potential investors meaningfully.

Also-- for anybody who occasionally enjoys a snack before bedtime and a good night’s sleep, we encourage you to check out Sean’s Nightfood project.

Have you seen other creative deployments of live chat to engage an audience? We'd love to hear your stories!

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