How to launch successful crowdfunding campaign: nect.Modem story

As of 15 May 2020, the Indiegogo campaign of nect MODEM has received 1223 backers generating the fund of over $127,000 (424% out of the campaign’s goal of $30,000) and enjoyed significant attention from top media like Popcorn Gadget, ZDnet, MUSE, Geeky Gadgets and more. 

Our nect MODEM is a portable LTE modem with a sleek design that allows fast and secure 4G connection globally. It attaches to the laptop using a USB cable, so there is no need to charge it separately. Thus, the modem can be used to share the internet with ten other devices. nect MODEM offers a flexible internet plan (you can choose between the nect plan and the plan of any other local provider) and has a built-in VPN to ensure top-notch security. Although we are still actively gathering feedback from the public, all these features make our portable modem a well-rounded and much-anticipated solution. 

Staying connected wherever you go or travel is extremely important in the modern world. Unfortunately, despite all the progress, this is still a challenge for many professionals. Often, they need to seek and rely on highly insecure public wifi and spend a fortune or roaming services during business trips. nect MODEM was created to tackle these issues.  

Also, let us note that our modem is produced from 100% recycled ABS plastics. It is one of our principal decisions that align with the vision of our company – “Hightech can be green.”   

Why Crowdfunding? 

We have considered crowdfunding from the very beginning, as we realized that it would be difficult to find an investor for a hardware B2C product. “Hardware is hard” is a common saying, and there is much truth in it. We have already had a chance to see this when raising our startup and attending international conferences.   

Also, engaging end-users to the funding of the project makes them active contributors to the product idea. We highly appreciate the credit of trust our backers have given to us and listen attentively to their feedback and requests to make our product even better.

What does it take to launch an Indiegogo campaign?

Launching an Indiegogo campaign is not difficult. You just need to prove your legal entity and the stage of your product development. For example, nect MODEM has started a campaign on the stage of a prototype.   

However, it’s not only about launching a campaign. It’s about making it a success. And we put in a lot of work to make it so.  

Our initial plan was to launch a crowdfunding campaign in July of 2019. Back then, we had only hardware, without the internet plans or VPN. This way, individuals buying it would still have to look for additional plans and solutions to have a reliable and secure internet connection anywhere. Thus, we resolved to postpone the campaign and refine the product to make it a winning offer for end-users. 

The 28 April 2020 – start of the Indiegogo campaign – became our ultimate deadline, which made us push beyond the limits to make the product ready for the market. While working on the software, we also started presenting nect MODEM on various tech events, which allowed us to get valuable feedback and contacts. 

Here is where we met our future partners: Rainfactory, a marketing agency specializing in crowdfunding and early-stage startup growth, and Rioks, a marketing consultancy that took over SEO, media relations, and PR responsibilities. Also, at one of the conferences, we met Paskal, the representative of Indiegogo, who further became our trusted advisor and brand advocate. 

In March, we launched the website and invited people interested in preordering the modem to get into the waiting list. Thus, when the Indiegogo campaign started, we managed to reach our goal in just five days. 

Insights and tips of the Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign 

First, do not think about the crowdfunding campaign as a goal in itself. Too many hardware startups fail soon after getting impressive funding. It is essential to consider the sustainability of your business from the very beginning, do market research, test public response to various features and slogans, build a brand and a loyal audience. All this should be done before kickstarting the crowdfunding campaign.    

Secondly, it is important to distinguish oneself from hundreds of other startups on the crowdfunding platform. We are sure that much of our success is because Indiegogo selected us as a “team favorite” campaign. It gives access to the featured display on the platform, mentions in the Indiegogo social media and emails to subscribers. 

If you really want to get such an advantage, it is important to proactively reach out to decision-makers to present your product and marketing plans. If you have a viable product and have strategies to bring many visitors to the crowdfunding platform, it might be interested in promoting you too.

Misha Rudominski, the founder and CEO at nect, and Nataly Havrysh, Chief of Content at Rioks

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