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How to Use Psychology to Build a Better Crowdfunding Video

Laura MacPherson February 21, 2019

Video is a medium that’s ideal for connecting emotionally with an audience. And, as all marketers know, emotional connection is foundational for generating action. People watch videos to disrupt the monotony of their daily schedule. They watch videos to change their emotional state, to feel a little happier, to shift to more positive perspective. And they watch videos to be inspired.

For these reasons, video is an ideal method of communicating your vision for your crowdfunding project. It allows you to easily create an emotional connection between your target supporters and your project. Prospective supporters can hear and see your story and visualize what you’re working to create.

So, how do you create a crowdfunding video that will motivate people to support you? Use these four techniques based on insights from psychology.

1. Use Skillful Storytelling

Psychologists say that humans have used stories in their quest for survival since the ancient times. People used stories to learn and warn others of dangers around them. Storytelling is an integral part of the human psyche. In 2010, neuroscientists at Princeton University uncovered another benefit of stories: their ability to “sync” the brains of storytellers and their listeners. The fMRI imaging revealed an interesting pattern. When someone told a story to another, both individuals’ brains displayed nearly identical activity across most areas of the brain. This phenomenon was repeated with each of the storyteller/listener pairs in the study. No wonder stories sell better than a list of facts.

Presenting your idea and your mission as a story will help prospective supporters align with you. Position yourself as the protagonist who’s facing a difficult challenge. Your prospective supporters are the heroes who will band together with you to become your partners in overcoming the challenge, making the world a better place for all involved. Your video should follow the narrative arc that’s been proven to resonate with listeners.

2. Include Music

Music is also a powerful tool to generate an emotional response. A meta-analysis of 400 music studies found that listening to music can reduce anxiety and fight depression. A study of elite triathletes found that music can also motivate. And as anyone who has the soundtrack to a movie in their Spotify favorites knows, music can inspire. Using music strategically in your video can draw viewers to feel what you want them to feel at various points in the video.  

3. Make It Personal

From a supporter’s perspective, crowdfunding is risky. They’re investing in the creator just as much as they are the project. Are you trustworthy? Are you competent? You can alleviate these worries by showcasing not only the advantages of your project, but als why you’re the best person to bring the project to fruition. Share what makes you uniquely qualified for the project. Do you have an educational background in the field? What about work experience in the industry? Do you have a network of connections who will be helping you? What other projects have you brought to market? Have you run other successful crowdfunding campaigns?

4. Look Through the Camera

At least in Western cultures, eye contact is seen as a factor in trustworthiness. A study involving door-to-door solicitation for charity donations found that eye contact significantly increased donations. When you’re recording yourself on video, be sure to look through the camera to your potential supporters. Imagine that you’re speaking directly to them, and try to forget that the camera is there. Eye contact will give supporters more confidence in you, and it will also help to hold their interest.

A strong video will engage prospective supporters, motivate them to make a financial commitment, and demonstrate your competence and trustworthiness. With all the noise on crowdfunding platforms today, a video with these characteristics will also help your project stand out.

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