Campaign Marketing Toolkit
We pulled together all the tools you need to put your campaign marketing strategy into practice so you can inspire your customers, fans and supporters to come aboard as shareholders and raise a successful round on Seedrs.
Realise the power of crowdfunding with an effective marketing strategy
For those who already know, love and trust your brand, your raise is an opportunity to become financially invested in its future. For newer audiences, it boosts brand awareness that extends long after your investment round is complete.
Engage your fans
A raise with Seedrs will help you build and engage with a loyal tribe of followers and brand ambassadors. Customers become investors and investors become customers. That’s the power of crowdfunding done properly.
Secure the funds you need
Inspire your customers, fans and supporters to come aboard as shareholders, whether they bring £10 or £10,000 to the table. Secure the funds you need right now, as well as the brand exposure you need for the future.
A successful campaign is a compliant one
You should be aware that your marketing of the campaign may involve financial promotions. We have prepared some frequently asked questions that you should be aware of to help you run an engaging and compliant campaign.
This guidance is largely based on our interpretation of the financial promotions regulations published by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), including rules requiring enhanced risk warnings that apply to both campaign pages and all external promotions (explained below).
The FCA rules apply to financial promotions made in the UK only. If you’re marketing your campaign outside of the UK, you should check the local financial promotions regulations. Your campaign manager will also be able to provide you with guidance.
What is a financial promotion and why does it matter?
A financial promotion is an ‘invitation or inducement to engage in an investment activity that’s made in the course of business’. Every financial promotion must be made or approved by an FCA-authorised firm like Seedrs. Your pitch on the Seedrs platform is a financial promotion, which is why Seedrs must verify and approve it. But you should be aware that your marketing of the campaign may also involve financial promotions.
Unless you’re an authorised financial services business it’s unlikely that you or your business can make or approve financial promotions. Doing so is contrary to FCA rules and you risk facing legal action or a fine.
When do these rules apply?
Financial promotions can be oral or written and made in numerous ways. Information provided through emails, social media posts, paid advertising or discussed at events could all be considered financial promotions, if they invite or induce investments.
How can I make sure my campaign marketing is compliant?
Your Seedrs campaign manager can work with you to ensure your marketing content is compliant. Once you’ve created the content using the templates provided, you can send it to your campaign manager for approval (please allow 24 hours for a response). We can then approve it as a financial promotion or provide feedback on how to make it compliant.
If you don’t use the templates, please make sure that any content you send to your campaign manager includes the following FCA specified risk warning:
Don’t invest unless you’re prepared to lose all the money you invest. This is a high risk investment and you are unlikely to be protected if something goes wrong. Take 2 mins to learn more.
The risk warning must follow specific FCA design requirements, including it must be at the top of the image, contained in its own border, in bold and underlined text, the same font size as the rest of the page, and it must be prominent (which means it cannot be obscured in any way). Please also ensure that the “Take 2 mins to learn more” text correctly links to the Seedrs website, where we explain the risks in more detail.
Emails are the most effective way to inform your crowd that you are raising investment. We’ve created a series of email templates below for you to copy and edit. These are based on best practice and our experience. They include suggested copy so that you just need to add your company name, add visuals and customise to fit your brand guidelines. They also include the required risk warning. Using these templates will streamline the financial approval process to ensure you can send your emails out in a timely manner. Once you have adapted these templates, please send over to your campaign manager for final approval before sending them out.
If your posts on social channels to promote your campaign include any persuasion to invest, then you MUST include the above risk warning, and the reader must ALWAYS see it before the text gets truncated (character length restrictions vary by social channel, so please adapt your copy for each). Where the social media platform does not allow you to include links in the copy text, you can remove the “Take 2 mins to learn more” text from the risk warning. Please send your draft over to your campaign manager for final approval before posting.
You will probably want to use images to pair with your social posts or a banner on your website. If any text is included that is a persuasion to invest, it is also considered a financial promotion and the same guidelines as above apply. We encourage you to work with your campaign manager for best practice.
In addition to the above risk warning, your email or social media post also needs to include the following ‘approval date stamp’:
‘Approved by Seedrs Ltd on [DATE]’
Please leave the date stamp in square brackets for your Seedrs campaign manager to approve as the final step. This is an FCA requirement to ensure that Seedrs retains responsibility for all approved publications.
This sounds like a lot of work! Is there another option?
For any communications that aren’t approved by Seedrs, you should ensure that your marketing activity does not fall into the FCA’s definition of a financial promotion. Your communications should not ‘invite’ or ‘induce’ investment into your campaign, but you can still generate interest in your business and let your community know that you’re ‘crowdfunding on Seedrs’, directing them to the platform.
Here are some strategies you may want to consider:
- Use phrases that encourage readers to learn more about the campaign such as ‘Find out more’, ‘Check out our campaign page’ or ‘Join our journey’ along with a link to your Seedrs campaign page. Phrases such as ‘Invest now’ or ‘Click here to buy shares’ should not be used.
- Purely factual information about your business, such as news, achievements, or even the fact that you are crowdfunding are unlikely to be considered a financial promotion (provided there is no element of investment persuasion).
Does this mean I can’t link to my campaign if I don’t get it approved?
Not necessarily! It will depend on the content of the rest of your post, keeping the message about your business, rather than the investment opportunity, will help ensure that you aren’t making a financial promotion. Avoid using terms such as “Invest here” and opt for phrases such as “Join or journey” or “Find out more about our campaign”.
What happens if I send out an unapproved financial promotion?
Making an unapproved financial promotion is against FCA regulation and in doing so you risk legal action or a fine. Do not use the Seedrs logo, disclaimer or approval copy for marketing that we have not approved as a financial promotion. If you do so, Seedrs reserves the right to cancel your campaign immediately and/or charge you a damages fee of £10,000 +VAT for breaking our terms.
What about GDPR?
As a separate consideration to the financial promotions rules, you should also ensure you think about compliance with data protection rules when marketing your campaign. Under the new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which applies from 25 May 2018, if you want to email your contacts, or otherwise use their personal data to promote your campaign, you’ll need to have a lawful basis for doing so.
It’s therefore important that you undertake an analysis of any proposed marketing activity in accordance with GDPR. The most common legal bases you can rely on for using personal data are set out opposite. Whilst ‘contract’ and ‘legal obligation’ probably won’t apply to the type of campaign marketing you want to conduct, they’re worth bearing in mind for other communications you may want to have with your investors post-fundraising. For example, if you’re delivering a perk to an investor (such as a product discount in return for investing), or providing them with an investor update.
What are the legal bases under GDPR?
- Consent. The GDPR sets a high standard for consent. It must be an explicit opt-in, specific to the particular use of data, and must be able to be easily withdrawn.
- Contract. You can rely on this basis if you need to process an individual’s data to fulfill your contractual obligations to them.
- Legal obligation. You can rely on this basis if the processing is necessary to fulfill your obligations under the law.
- Legitimate interest. You can rely on this basis if you have a legitimate interest to use the person’s data, and be able to show that data usage is necessary to achieve it, balanced against the individual’s interests, rights and freedoms.
If you’re simply sending one email about your campaign to your personal contacts or customer base, “legitimate interest” may be a useful basis for you to rely on. But you should ensure that the marketing is proportionate, recipients are clearly able to opt out, and you are otherwise in compliance with email marketing regulations.
Please note that Seedrs does not provide legal advice of any kind, and nothing in this guide constitutes such advice. If you have any questions with respect to financial promotions compliance, you should consult a professional adviser.
Light up their inboxes
When it comes to promoting your raise, email marketing is your secret weapon. Your email touchpoints will be your strongest for conversion during your campaign. Inspire them with your mission and help them navigate the Seedrs signup process so they can invest in your success.
The Seedrs email templates
We’ve included five email templates, each tailored to the stages of your round. These templates will allow you capitalise on your campaign’s milestones to help convert your community.
- Crafted in-house by our Seedrs marketing pros
- They can be customised to fit your brand guidelines – just add your company name!
- Streamline the financial promotion approval process… the closer you stick to these templates, the faster your financial promotion review will be.
Using the templates
You can simply download and adjust the HTML, or, if you’re a Mailchimp user and you’d like to use the drag-and-drop builder, open the templates in Mailchimp directly.
Always make sure to send any communications to your campaign manager to sign off before distributing to your community.
This email is designed for your pre-launch phase. Reach out to your network with this email to drive traffic to your pre-registration landing page. Let your audience know that you’re crowdfunding, why you’re crowdfunding and why you’re excited to bring them on board as shareholders. Be sure to tailor your messaging depending on the recipient. Potential big tickets will appreciate a little more personalisation, while customers might appreciate something more casual.
Countdown to private launch
This email should be sent to all pre-registered users to create excitement prior to the private launch of your campaign. It also gives them the chance to get ready to invest by signing up to Seedrs and verifying their identity. Feel free to direct any support-related queries to [email protected]
This email will be sent to all the users who pre-registered to invest in your crowdfunding campaign during pre-launch phase. It will drive traffic to your campaign page on Seedrs, and notify them that the campaign is now open for investment, and encourage them to invest before the pitch opens publicly on Seedrs. You can separate your send, to ensure potential big ticket investors receive access first.
High ticket investor outreach
This email can be send to pre-registered user who have pledged to invest higher amounts in the campaign (for example £5k or more). You’ll want to give these prospective investors extra attention, by offering to schedule a call with them, or providing your personal contact for any queries they may have. If you’re using a CRM, ensure to personalise it with merge tags, and sign it with your name and headshot to give a personal touch.
Countdown to public launch
This email will be sent to all pre-registered users, to let them know that the campaign will open publicly soon. It’s designed to encourage them to invest while they still have priority access. You can highlight the momentum of your campaign, including how much you’ve raised so far, and how many investors you’ve brought on board.
This email is sent to all your pre-registered users who haven’t invested yet, to let them know that the campaign is now live publicly on Seedrs. You can also send this email to any of your contacts who didn’t have the chance to pre-register. You can mention any milestones including how quickly you raised investment, or how many investors have come on board so far.
If you have any perks available to investors in your campaign, this is your chance to advertise them to your users! If your perks include discounts or merchandise, be sure to include visuals. The best perks emails will highlight the benefits at each ticket size, encouraging investors to invest a little more than they normally would to make the most of them.
This email can be sent to all pre-registered users and other contacts who haven’t yet invested, to let them know that you’ve hit a milestone such as 100% funded, 100 investors or one week live on the platform. You can send emails like this as often as you like – the more the better! It will keep up momentum for the campaign and drum up new investment.
This email can be sent to pre-registered users, friends and contacts to advise them that there is limited time left to invest in the campaign. You can use subject lines like “Our crowdfunding campaign is closing soon” or “Only 5 days left to check out our campaign”. You may want to include those who have already invested as well, to encourage them to invest a little more before close.
Any marketer knows that no ad is complete without a visual. Whether you’re using brand aesthetics, product videos or short gifs, your community will always respond better to engaging visuals paired with your copy.
We’ve included the photoshop files we used to create our templates below. Simply drag in your desired brand imagery or colour palette and adjust the wording to create your very own multi-image animation! For your own branded gif, just click file, export, save to web, and save as a gif that loops “forever”. You can compress your gif’s file size here.
Please make sure you send these to your Campaign Manager for financial promotion sign off before sending out to your community.
Leverage your social platforms to publicise your raise! Every time your company hits a funding milestone, or achieves something great, let your audiences know. You can illustrate these posts with the assets provided, or customise them using our Photoshop files. You can share these on paid and organic social, for maximum reach. Make sure to adjust your copy to appeal to retargeting and prospecting audiences respectively.
We’ve pulled together a simple animation you can drag into any one of your email templates. If you’d like to customise it, simply download the Photoshop file and change any of the colours to your brand palette, or drag in brand imagery. You can adjust the text to reflect your campaign’s milestones. You can upload this asset into the Mailchimp builder, or if you’re not a Mailchimp user, you can drag it into gmail to bring a little life to your investor email.