The Power of Crowdfunding – Manny Fernandez
Author: Gloria Mopotu
Silicon Valley angel investor Manny Fernandez speaks in SLUSH Singapore about ways to find funding for your business digitally and the benefits that self-investment can benefits can have a massive impact on your business.
Asia has become one of the leading regions in the world when it comes to the startup ecosystem. With the boom of the startup community in places like Hong Kong, Indonesia and Singapore, startups in these parts of South-East Asia are re-defining the way business should move in the future. In Singapore, the city has been ranked as number one in The World Banks Ease of Doing Business and this has put Singapore at the forefront of startup community.
Known as an investor on CNBC’s Make Me A Millionaire Inventor and CEO of DreamFunded, Manny Fernandez is a serial entrepreneur who has sold a company and created a 32 member group called South Francisco Angels Group. In he’s recent trip to Singapore to attend the Singapore Week of Innovation & Technology (SWITCH), Fernandez was invited as a speaker and delivered a special message to encourage startups create their own way to fund their campaigns.
What’s In It For Me (WIMF)?
To kickstart the talk, Manny highlighted the significance of social media as a tool to help you invest in your business. Social media platforms such as LinkedIn and Twitter are important to promote your business as it tells people what your business is about and what it’s it for the investor you want to attract.
“When you write your offering, think about the other person all the time. The moment you write about what’s in it for other person, then they won’t have a problem to fundraise you.”
The most important aspect of online marketing is informing the investor what’s in it for them and how they will benefit from investing in you. Fernandez also emphasized that a determined and focused leader should be able to establish a marketable online presentation that will get followers engaged and start spreading the message on their behalf. The purpose of this specific task is to create an online “viral campaign” which will grab the attention of a third party which could potentially back your business.
Fernandez also stressed that one should never underestimate the little followers they may have on their social media accounts because by sharing your campaign with your followers, it will enable them to share it with their friends weekly until it becomes something that people are talking about and falls in the eyes of the right people. Once (WIMF) is clear on your campaign, people will take notice and want to come on board.
“It’s always about the other person.”
Initial Coin Offering (ICO)
As an entrepreneur on the come up, looking for capital to help fund your business can be an excruciating and rigorous process. Some people may turn our lucky and get capital from the banks or through investors while others are not so lucky and must find other means to fund their campaign. This is why Initial Coin Offering (ICO) is a good concept and another form of successful crowdfunding according to Manny.
“1.6 billion Us dollars was raised alone this year because of the ICO. ICO is the way to go.”
ICO is mainly used by startups through the process of building an online networking community like slack and Facebook to raise money for their business. Fernandez calls this “a digital way of crowdfunding” because when people invest in ICOs they believe that they can sell it on exchange like Bitcoin or Ethereum.
Entrepreneurs have created alternative ways for other entrepreneurs to fund their businesses and attract the right investors. But as simple this may sound, it involves a lot of hard work and commitment from the entrepreneur. With perseverance and diligence, anything is possible.
“The destiny is in your hands. Just have belief in it and take action.”