What's the difference between a crowd funding ambulance chaser and a genuine marketer?
When you create a crowd funding project, you also signal the arrival of potential fresh meat to the dens of wolves disguising themselves as sheep of the marketing profession.
In any system of free enterprise, the range of services offered will typically run the gamut from one extreme to the other, with many who offer their "services" lying somewhere in between.
We live in a world where junk mail and spam are commonplace occurrences. Word spin and clever packaging do not alter the core nature of what is being sent to you, whether by postal mail, e-mail, or any other means.
Generally speaking, being informed is the best defense against falling prey to scams and marketing ploys.
What people who are new to crowd funding project creation are after are tangible results, plain and simple. They are new to the game of raising funding via crowd funding mechanisms. Thus, they lack the advantages which experience naturally conveys.
So, in a nutshell, let me try to simplify this for you, in case you happen to come into contact with this article BEFORE you come into contact with people who are after your money, to help you with making your crowd funding project a success. Are you ready for it? Here it comes!
There are people out there who will take advantage of you!
They will make all kinds of claims. They will push all the right buttons. But, let me ask you this - what do they actually guarantee?
All promise and no guarantees make for an awkward recipe for success, and especially when what is being presented to you is a one-sided marketing scheme. Namely, they get money from you, and they want it upfront, but you get no actual, concrete guarantees in return.
Numbers are close kin of statistics. Numbers can be manipulated all kinds of different ways, as can statistics. If you shouldn't judge a book by its cover, then why be so quick to judge a marketing scheme by its cover? That's how people fall victim to scams. It's how people become prey of other people who are out to take advantage.
How do they take advantage of you?
(1) By preying on your inexperience. You're new, and THEY are BANKING on it!
(2) By preying upon your ignorance (which is simply a lack of knowledge and understanding of something).
(3) By preying upon your desire to succeed.
(4) By preying upon the natural disposition of human nature to take advantage of what seems to be a good offer.
(5) By offering limited time offers, offers designed to get you to rush in responding to them, so that you don't take sufficient time to explore and to investigate the claims that they are making. Don't let them use the ticking of the clock against you! If you rush yourself, then you become more prone to making a mistake.
(6) By surprising you, generally by appearing in some form of message from right out of the blue. You didn't initiate contact - They contacted you, first. In layman's parlance, it's known as springing a trap.
(7) By holding up the potential for your project to fail, whether directly or indirectly. In essence, they hold the keys to success, which is nonsense, of course, since there typically tends to be many different keys to success, no matter what the undertaking is.
(8) Through guile - by way of clever use of words to make you think that you're getting a great deal, when in fact, you're not. You just don't know it at the time, and they already full well know that. Snake oil is snake oil, though, whether in liquid form or in verbal or written form. Snake oil is no miracle cure for a project just freshly launched, nor for one about to be launched.
(9) By manipulation of numbers. What a particular number means, no matter how big or how small that it is, always depends upon the context that it is presented in. Fifty thousand may be a lot - but, here's the clincher - fifty thousand of what? Five thousand of what?
(10) By playing visual shell games. Numbers are not always interchangeable. High numbers in one area do not necessarily translate into high numbers in another area. Numbers are used to distract, as much as they are used to inform, if the person or company claiming to be interested in making your project become a success is simply seeking to take advantage of you.
I call them ambulance chasers, not because there's been a wreck, just because you've launched your crowd funding project. Your intentions are good. It's not YOUR INTENTIONS that are the concern. Rather, it's THEIR INTENTIONS that can be cause for alarm! The wreck happens, when you trust them with your money, when quite clearly, you shouldn't. Taking a little time out, BEFORE you make a decision to send complete strangers your money, might just save you more than a few headaches.
What will always serve you well is by doing some research, first. People who are legitimate marketers, people who are committed to your well being, aren't going to have a problem with you taking your time to decide. In fact, any research by you should validate the claims of companies that seem to be promising you the proverbial moon.
You be the one to initiate contact. Follow that one simple rule, and you stand a much better chance of avoiding being scammed, right from the get-go.
The very moment that a company or individual contacts you out of the blue, becoming immediately suspicious of them serves to protect you from them. Your conscience is not your enemy, and neither is your suspicion, and particularly where your suspicion is flagged by someone or something appearing out of the blue, uninvited and unexpected.
Ask yourself this question - Why YOUR project? What about your project warranted such an immediate response from these companies and individuals? BAM!! You no sooner launch your project, than the offers to "assist" you with your project start raining from the sky like cats and dogs. If anything, that's a sure sign that somebody out there is looking for a sucker.
Don't be that sucker! Don't be the wolf's next meal!
Your wallet will thank you for it!
Squandering your project's budget (assuming that you're even fortunate enough to have a budget, to begin with) will not benefit your project. It's OK to be on guard. It's OK to be suspicious. It's more than OK to just say, "NO!"
If, after you tell them no, they want you to send them your e-mail address, don't do it! If their initial intentions weren't good, and if their marketing spiel is questionable, then why trust them with your e-mail address? Heed the warning signs and avoid them like the plague that they likely are!