Leader of the newest group of crowdfunding experts, Brandon Adams is living the millennial dream. He’s the brains behind the Young Entrepreneur Convention, a US-based movement with plans to take over the world.
The idea is only six months old, but already Brandon has a sizable team working to help turn his dream into a reality. “The vision is to create one of the biggest entrepreneurial events this country has seen,” Brandon explains when asked about the motivation behind his campaign. “I want to bring like minded individuals together — specifically millennials — and give them the knowledge and support they need to follow their dreams and start their own businesses.”
It’s not been an easy path. The team had intended to launch through Kickstarter, and had devised their campaign with that in mind, spending two months painstakingly putting together a campaign that the crowdfunding goliath promptly denied. “After all that hard work, we got a simple reply saying our campaign didn’t fit their guidelines.” Brandon sighs ruefully, “We resubmitted, they replied back saying it was denied, and that was it.
We had to switch everything over to Indiegogo.” It could have been a disaster — they’d already recorded four podcasts that were scheduled for the week of launch and told an audience of 1 million people to find them on Kickstarter – but this enterprising team weren’t going to let that put them off.
“There were struggles, but we got through them and moved on. Just like any entrepreneur would.” We can’t help but pry so, besides falling foul of the Kickstarter vs. Indiegogo trap, what other problems did this team overcome?
“The video was a nightmare.” Brandon smiles, “We spent a whole day shooting and the end product was nothing like we intended. In the end, we had to call it a complete loss and hire a new videographer. The second video took another six days to shoot and needed a whole new script but, eventually, we got the video we intended.”
Despite all these hiccups, was the crowdfunding experience still a profitable one for them? “Absolutely,” Brandon is keen to emphasize. “Crowdfunding is the best way to raise money and national media attention. I personally have been funding Young Entrepreneur Convention, I needed to until the company could fund itself, but I knew that launching a crowdfunding campaign would raise the necessary funds we needed for our event in Des Moines in 2016, and it also helped to spread awareness of our campaign. We already have people from 15 states and multiple countries that are attending the event.”
If you’re channeling the entrepreneurial vibe and fancy a trip to Iowa next year, then you’ve still got a couple of weeks left to pledge your support and bag a ticket (or four) for the next YEC event. And it certainly sounds like one not to be missed. Help them hit their stretch targets, and the YEC team will add extra bands to the evening line-up (it already sounds like quite the party), boost the prize fund for the elevator pitch competition (which currently has prizes for multiple categories) and add another keynote speaker (there’s three on the list already).
No wonder they’ve already smashed their original target, these crowdfunding experts certainly know what they’re doing!