SeizeTheCrowd Rethinks Crowdfunding Campaigns
Most people have heard of Kickstarter and crowdfunding, but running a successful campaign isn’t quite as easy as it appears. That’s where SeizeTheCrowd comes in: it connects crowdfundraisers with the right types of professionals — PR, videographers, and others — to run more effective campaigns. Jeremy Schwartz, SeizeTheCrowd Founder and frequent Loosecuber, shares some of his insights on taking the startup plunge.
Can you tell us a bit about yourself and your work at SeizeTheCrowd?
I’m a lawyer by training and have always had an entrepreneurial itch. My first company, which I ran at night and on the weekends while I was practicing, was a designer paper goods company. My current company, SeizeTheCrowd, connects would-be crowdfundraisers with professionals — PR, video, et cetera — so that they can run more effective campaigns. My guess is that the crowdfunding industry is going to quickly consist of much more than just the platforms (Kickstarter, Indiegogo, et cetera) and my goal is to be there as the evolution occurs.
How did you decide to start SeizeTheCrowd?
My fiancee and I returned to New York earlier this year after living abroad and I spent a lot of time getting to know the (amazing) local startup scene. Crowdfunding presented itself as a great opportunity since it sits at the intersection of entrepreneurship, technology and law and is an industry that I think is going to grow and change wildly over the next couple years. It’s an area with tons of unchartered territory but one where the skills I’ve learned earlier in my career come into play.
If your idea does not fundamentally rely on technology then you should be able to produce an MVP (minimum viable product) more or less on your own and for close to free (assuming your time is worth $0). While SeizeTheCrowd will be able to scale because of technology, it is fundamentally a relationship-building and strategy company and I realized that in these early days I can serve as the “back end.” So, I built a simple informational website using Squarespace; it didn’t take too much time and I think it lends a legitimacy to the company. That said, I am planning on upgrading the website and will put some money into that.
My favorite part is the people I meet almost every time I loosecube. In fact, a neighbor of mine at the Loosecubes Outpost has become a SeizeTheCrowd client! I also like getting to change up my commute.
What are some of your early-stage cost-saving tactics?