Most companies, organizations, or projects, provide value to users (also called customers). I tend to differentiate between users/ customers and clients, by defining that users/customers consume what I provide, and clients pay for it. For example, if you are reading this, you are our user. If you are paying us for our services you are a client. You can benefit as a user without paying for our services. Our sponsors are our clients too.
Customer and clients play a pivotal role in the sustainability of your company, organization, or project. Chances are however, that you need resources waaaay before you approach customers and clients. These resources come from funders and backers, you included.
Finding funders and backers is a burning questions for many people who have great ideas, and have decided that it is time to stop dreaming and start acting.
Where exactly do you find backers and funders? To your surprise it is common to find that your WEAK ties are your best supporters.
Who are weak ties?
Acquaintances, people that know you but who are not afraid to tell you what they think, and who have nothing to lose by telling you what they think. How do you find weak ties? Ask your strong ties, your friends, your relatives, your co-workers.
To find backers and funders you need to know what you want. Remember, I asked you to think in terms of resources, not cash. You need to know:
(1) What do you want to do and,
(2) Why it is important to you. That is your passion.
Yes, you can ask questions on social media, and LinkedIn is perfect for that. Also, ask your banker. There are also a ton of angel associations. I am a member of Sand Hill Angels and we see a lot of deals on a monthly basis. Stay away from asking online for money, people need to know YOU. And don’t send a consultant to represent you. It doesn’t work!