217: Crowdfunding 101: How to Raise Money for Your Next Project

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Nathan Chan is the founder of FoundrMag.com. The digital magazine started as a side hustle in 2013, and has since transformed into a multi-million dollar media company.

Nathan is perhaps best-known for growing his business through Instagram, a platform where Foundr now has almost a million followers.

But today I want to dive into a different angle of Nathan’s business, and that’s crowdfunding.

Time, money, and ideas are the big 3 challenges I hear from Side Hustle Nation over and over again, and this conversation attempts to address one possible answer to the money question.

Nathan and his team are fresh off a $200,000 Kickstarter campaign for the first volume of Foundr books, a really high-end, beautifully designed coffee table book, which you can find at foundrmag.com/book.

In this episode, Nathan shares why Kickstarter is such a powerful platform — even if you don’t have a big built-in audience, and everything he did to make their campaign a hit.

Stay tuned for his advice on why you might consider crowdfunding, how to make the most of your Kickstarter exposure, and some examples of other side hustler’s products that have taken off.

Free Bonus: Download Nathan’s Tips and Strategies For Running a Successful Crowdfunding Campaign

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  • How Nathan raised more than $200k in crowdfunding to launch a physical product.
  • How to use crowdfunding to strengthen your company brand, validate an idea, and tap into a new audience.
  • How you can run successful campaigns without any online presence.
  • Why Nathan’s project was featured on the “Projects Kickstarter Loves” section on their front page generating $8k in additional backing.
  • How to use Facebook ads to drive more traffic and backers to your campaign.
  • How to set a realistic goal and exceed it.
  • The costs involved in running a successful campaign.
  • Nathan’s #1 tip for Side Hustle Nation.


Foundr’s campaign timeline:

You can see how they hit their goal right away, and then how the campaign accelerated again toward the end in part due to the Facebook ads they were running.

Crowdfunding backers profile:

Nathan shared this graphic with me to show that two-thirds of the backers had already backed at least one other project on Kickstarter.

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Nick Loper

About the Author

Nick Loper is a side hustle expert who loves helping people earn more money and start businesses they care about. He hosts the award-winning Side Hustle Show, where he's interviewed over 500 successful entrepreneurs, and is the bestselling author of Buy Buttons, The Side Hustle, and $1,000 100 Ways.

His work has been featured in The New York Times, Entrepreneur, Forbes, TIME, Newsweek, Business Insider, MSN, Yahoo Finance, The Los Angeles Times, The San Francisco Chronicle, The Financial Times, Bankrate, Hubspot, Ahrefs, Shopify, Investopedia, VICE, Vox, Mashable, ChooseFI, Bigger Pockets, The Penny Hoarder, GoBankingRates, and more.

5 thoughts on “217: Crowdfunding 101: How to Raise Money for Your Next Project”

  1. Thanks for this episode.
    Just listening to this, I kind of wish there was a loner’s guide to Kickstarter because I’m not sure I would ever have six months’ worth of savings, 1000 true fans, or a background in publishing extensive enough to utilize any assets to get the project attention on kickstarter.

    When I graduated, I didn’t have enough skills to even obtain a regular paying job (or even a social network). Most of my skills were obtained afterwards through Udemy or Code Academy.

    I’ve always had irregular work and not enough of the security that would allow me to explore my strengths with other people. Fortunately, I’m turning a new leaf, but I really would love more stories from people who went from literally zero to one. Just my thoughts.

    • I hear you man. There’s definitely a lot of moving parts that have to come together all at once — a killer idea and product, and great marketing to at least get those initial eyeballs and backers.

  2. Nathan’s journey has been rather Supernova in his success’ over the last 3 to 4 years and he deserves all that he has solidly worked hard for.

    Nathan has had four big hits in three years;

    – Foundr Magazine – I recall that Nathan made around $7 with the very first issue published.
    – Foundr is absolutely crushing it and reaping the rewards with their efforts on Instagram.
    – Foundr kickstarter campaign for the book
    – Foundr’s club, Nathan’s membership group where Foundr members can learn, grow and explore their business and entrepreneurship.

    Nathan also has a podcast and excellent resources available on the Foundr blog.

    With all this, I am suggesting that Nathan had some big, hairy goals and they have come to fruition.

    Looking forward to what I fellow Melbournite has in store for the future.

    Nick are you thinking you may follow up on the podcast with Nathan, say 12-18 months down the track?


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