As we reach the last 7 days of this crowdfunding campaign, we can’t help but look back at what and quite honestly WHO got us here…$5000 ABOVE our original goal and ready to rock this brewery with an incredible community of supporters!! But it wasn’t as easy as you might think…
The planning of a crowdfunder isn’t something I would call easy…on any level. After spending the better part of six solid months researching successful and failed Kickstarter and Indigogo campaigns while incessantly listening to podcasts on “how to run a crowdfunding campaign”, I still thought there wasn’t enough information to get it started. What I didn’t realize immediately, was that it wasn’t MORE information that I needed…it was courage.
When you grow up as a bit of an outsider…not “popular” but not totally rejected either, you live with a voice in your head that says, “nobody will support your crowdfunder because they don’t care what you’re doing…you don’t matter…what you’re doing doesn’t matter… nobody is going to buy anything and you will look like a fool”.
Those words radiated around and around, leaving me in fear of “putting us out there” after all the work we have done in getting here. I’m still the epitome of un-cool (according to my kids) and although I these fears ran through my head non-stop, there came a time when I jumped head first into what scared me most (rejection) and brought this crowdfunder to all of you!
Now, it wasn’t a grand epiphany that made me hit GO on the campaign…it was one person…who likely doesn’t even know HE was the reason I had the courage to hit go, that made me finally do it!
It was Saturday, July 21st, during the Taste of Okotoks, when this amazing guy and his partner, strolled up on his lunch hour to our Hub Town Brewing booth in front of Boothill Gallery where we were teaching a Brew Day, outdoors, for anyone that wanted to see and learn how to brew! Unfortunately our location had been cut off from the event, just ending at the corner of Elizabeth Street and Veterans Way, leaving us on the outside of the action and the chance to meet the crowds of new people we were expecting to. But…as it turns out, that was the best thing that could have happened…
Besides being able to meet and talk in depth with a handful of wonderful people wanting to learn about brewing and our pending brewery, this kind hearted guy stopped to quickly chat. In that less than five minutes, we talked about just one SINGLE crowdfunder reward idea that I had, and he was instantly excited about it! Like propagating yeast for brewing, I grew the courage to kick this crowdfunder off with just that five minute conversation!
The next day I got serious about finalizing the campaign plan and began to work my tail off planning every minute detail while kicking up the marketing part of the campaing…yup, you’ve probably all seen it (non-stop) on social media. Isn’t it funny that we turn to social media to spread the word when it too holds the power of rejection in the palm of its hands?! Anyway, the posting started and I was grateful for ANY likes…ANY engagement…ANY sign that maybe our community was ready for this crowdfunder…and many of you responded!! But some responded WAY more than we expected.
When we tell people that we are a “brewery built on community” we mean it! This was never our slogan…it wasn’t our anything before this crowdfunder…not that we didn’t feel community spirit from our incredible networking groups and friends…we just still weren’t sure if others “wanted us” and our brewery here (fear). When you make the mistake of spending time reading negative comments about yourself and your pending business on Facebook, by those who just didn’t want us around, you can’t help but decide that you’re not wanted. No matter how many people tell you otherwise, those “five” people and their mean comments are the best nourishment for the fear monster!
But just as those comments fed our fears, many of you fed our courage and built us up to feel like not only did we belong (like NORM on Cheers), but that you wanted us…you wanted our idea…you agreed with our values and wanted to see us succeed!! You were the reason we EXCEEDED our crowdfunder goal in ONE WEEK! You told your friends, your clients and your family…YOU are how we got here!!
Over our next several blog posts, we are going to tell you all about some of these amazing people and what they have done to PUSH us up and help us succeed at this crowd funding thing beyond our expectations!
If you haven’t guessed this yet, in our NEXT blog you will get to meet the fantastic guy who inadvertently helped push us over the “Paralyzed with Fear” issue that was preventing our crowdfunder from being born. He has become one of our BIGGEST supporters and someone we feel is a true ambassador for community in Okotoks! He lives our values, not just talking the talk but walking or even RUNNING the walk! If you don’t know him, you should…his name is Oliver and trust me, he’s the real deal…he IS Okotoks!
Stay tuned…his story is next!