Engineer, writer, developer
Have helped raise more than $1.4m for entrepreneurs, creatives, athletes in 2014 on Kickstarter, Indiegogo and many other crowdfunding platforms
Expertise in crowdfunding for entrepreneurs.
How, why, what, where, from design to launch to management.
Positioning a venture for 100x Growth
Creating, Leading, and executing for 100x Growth
Able to win and grow audiences for a specific topic
Content strategy + partnerships
Very strong in written, as well as photo and video productions : blogs, youtube, vimeo, wordpress etc.
5 years in engineering: architecture, front-end, back-end, developping proprietary algorithms, scaling, infrastructure
They should market when they have validated their MVP, and they know that each marketing dollar brings in positive ROI
Make sure you understand why would anyone contribute to your campaign. It's worth taking time to prepare the campaign, create a vibrant community, build a story and bring emotion, and imagine unique rewards that lets the audience engage in your project.
I recommend being entrepreunarial and actually go in the streets. Go meet a food truck everyday. In a week, you'll have 7 conversations. Beats emails, phone or Facebook
If you don't have enough backers yet, then don't crowdfund yet. You can't afford a very public failure.
If you are doing donation or rewards crowdfunding, make sure you have a tangible consumer product. It's difficult otherwise to crowdfund services, non-tangible or free products.
If you also want to patent, if you have secrets, it's better to make sure your business is secure before going public on a crowdfunding platform. Have a talk to your lawyer about this!
There is indiegogo, which has good traffic, as well as Gambitious, which will veto applications, and also lab.gamesplanet.com
I recommend taking a close look at Kickstarter though. It's the best for indie game developers, even if you hve to go through a US payement agent if you are not in the US
Find technical events on meetup.com and see who is good.
Startup Digest also has listings for every city. Subscribe and go the edgy stuff.
One of the best ways is also join programmers in hackathons or startup weekend. You should enquire for the list of attendees before the event and message, and see if there's any fit. A weekend working on an app is like doing a mini startup.
Of course, you should have a solid web page somewhere showing what you want to build -- otherwise it's a hard sell for programmers
I can recommend the following :
- if you go to conferences, publish blog posts or keynotes, or comment online, make sure to add your twitter handle
- add your twitter handle in your email signature and business cards
- make sure your description is good. You can say : "I answer topics about management, journalism, and public relations in... every friday 2 to 4pm"
- i also find that my followers number (> 4000 currently) increases dramatically when I go to events or conferences. So make sure you advertise your twitter there. Use hashtags, live tweet the content of the event, comment on those who tweet as well.
Happy tweeting !
I would do market research on how you would position the blog. There are thousands of education blogs and making sure your voice stands out and matches the market is essential.
After positioning, you need to make a list of all the content you can produce: original blog posts, infographics, videos, pictures, lists, news commentary etc. It's essential to begin with your best piece and make sure you keep the rhytm.
Packaging (i.e. layout, headlines, design) is as important as the layout. Visitors need to know they're on a unique blog
Finally marketing. I recommend checking out the upworthy strategy, with a strong foundation on social media marketing (twitter/facebook), and as an aside, also build a good mailing-list for followers.
Let me know if this helps, would be happy to detail.
I would check first if you are delivering a tangible product. Software-only or service companies have a hard time crowdfunding, as it's hard to find interesting rewards for non-tangible products.
I would then focus on creating a strong community behind the project. This is where investing resources on Facebook makes sense.
If you have more than 600 Facebook fans, I would then try to find an angle where you can tell a good story with emotion about what you are doing. Is there an overarching cause? Who are the people behind the project? What's the impact. Those would be good points to tell in the video.
Since you are in beta, I would present it as such : "We've already done so much, built a prototype, but we are a startup with limited resources, and need your contribution to get us to first version." Offering early access, user privileges, access to the developer edition are all good ideas for rewards. You can also have a "Credits" section on your product, everyone appreciate having their name on a public website.
Kickstarter has indeed a stronger brand and the quality of its projects is generally higher. It seems Indiegogo is always the fallback plan.
However, Indiegogo has a few strong points:
* It is very strong in internationalization. It supports many more currencies, languages and countries than Kickstarter. Kickstarter seems happy to be present mostly in Anglo-saxon countries
* Indiegogo is very strong in community (non-profit causes) and also in film projects. Additionally it has many health tech projects and finance projects that Kickstarter has not. When was last time that you saw an innovative finance project on Kickstarter?
* Indiegogo is growing faster than Kickstarter. Lately, Kickstarter has announced they will switch to a non-profit status and it's been a while they haven't announced new expansion while Indiegogo has fresh investment $$ and has announced new products
* Indiegogo has a staff that can help entrepreneurs and creatives. They will give you support before you launch and can give you advice to raise more. Kickstarter has very little support - apart from its shiny interface and automated interface.
At the end of the day, what matters is selecting the best platform that is best for your project. Conduct due diligence and see where the best performing projects are in your industry.
Pros: you will be able to get a proof of concept and a final version of the site quickly, compared to other frameworks. It will be possible to get it developed by a good freelance developer instead of a whole development team. Also a site to rate local schools has fairly standard components, so it would be easy to take existing code from other projects and get it started quickly.
I estimate for example that a proof of concept can be developed in about 3 weeks and a final site launched in 2 months
Cons: Rails developers are more rare than php programmers. Also a Rails application is an elaborate system. It's not as easy as a Wordpress site where you just grab and drop files. You will definitively need someone who has experience delivering elaborate sites like the one mentioned.
If you want more advice, we can discuss.
Heri and his partner Bruno have been amazing partners for the Crowdfunding workshops we have been running for the past few months. Heri's energy, enthusiasm and incredible network have allowed us to meet lots of new entrepreneurs and help them launch amazing projects. I strongly recommend letting Heri be your guide to crowdfunding success.
Heri is a true community leader. Always there to support the Startup scene and all the actors involved. Heri understands what entrpreneurs need better than most. His approach is grass roots and always relevant to making Montreal a great place to build a business.
I have worked with Heri on 2 campaigns for Jolietta thus far - Christmas/Holidays 2012 and Valentine's Day 2013.
Heri is creative, detailed-orientated, focussed, and a pleasure to work with. We came up with a concept for both campaigns; he had a vision and knew exactly what he wanted, and saw it through from start to finish. At the same time, he is flexible, able to think of his feet and quickly remedy a problem or provide alternative solutions.
Heri is a wealth of knowledge, especially when it comes to startups. I have learnt and continue to learn so much from him. He is an invaluable part of the Montreal startup community and I look forward to working with him again.
Heri as been very helpful with MAKEACHAMP.com on a variety of aspects. With his business knowledge he carefully analyzed our marketing strategy and successfully helped us narrow it down to accommodate our limited resources. We were able reach a large portion of our market without wasting resources and time. On the product development aspect of MAKEACHAMP.com he gave us some crucial advice on designing a website specific to our costumer's needs. Heri has been crucial on helping MAKEACHAMP.com get to the point where it is now, we could not have done it without him. Every time we sit down with Heri we feel like we progress couple of months of work! I'd recommend Heri for any type of business help, he is truly a start-up Guru!
Heri was an asset to the Dawson College Entrepreneurship Week organizing committee. His vision and expertise in all that is start-up as well as his extensive network, were invaluable to the success of the very first Eweek. Thank you Heri!
Venture Cap TV is thankful to have Heri Rakotomala's wealth of experience on our Board of Advisors. His passionate drive for the tech startup community and hands-on involvement in the sector organizing initiatives such as StartupWeekend Montreal, NewTechMtl, Notman House's Indiegogo fundraising video and many others, have made him a well respected, sought after leader in the Canadian startup ecosystem. Heri's been a guiding force in Venture Cap TV's mission to get tech startups on the world map and is surely one of the more inspirational leaders molding the tech startup world of the future.
Heri has been a very valuable asset on the Venture Cap Tv board. His entrepreneurial experience brings a lean yet powerful mindset which is critical for a startup. Working with him has been a pleasure, I recommend it!
I had the chance to work with Heri on the Startup Weekend organization. When Heri joined the team, the momentum really changed for the organization. He brang experience, expertise, knowledge, contacts and many other elements to the Startup Weekend.
I hope you won't hesitate to include Heri in any of your team, he is a great plus-value.
I highly recommend Le Studio's services. Heri never ceases to amaze me with his project management skills. He has the determination and focus to implement impressive projects from A to Z, even under tight deadlines. He also has a wide understanding of all the technical aspects of video production which ensures that your project is in good hands.
Le leadership et la motivation de Heri ont permis de réaliser cette première édition du projet OpenIT4Africa avec succès. Enthousiaste, il a mis à profit ses qualités de leader de projet en rassemblant une équipe dévouée. Ce fut un réel plaisir de collaborer avec Heri pour OpenIT4Africa.
With MTLNewTech, Heri has created a vibrant forum that encourages entrepreneurship in Montreal. I appreciate the presentations, the open exchange and the networking that takes place at these events. Well done!