DickersonBakker Blog

How is a capital campaign like an iPhone?

The rumors have been flying for months. The media has been obsessing about how big it will be, what features it will have, if it will come in gold, and what the glass will be made of. The iPhone 6 hasn’t even been officially acknowledged yet, but there is still a ton of buzz about it in the tech world.
The excitement and anticipation of the announcement (assumed to be September 9) is thick. As an Apple guy, I find myself getting sucked into the speculation as well. I am following the iPhone 6 gossip closely to get a glimpse of what my next phone might be like.

That is exactly the way Apple wants it. They know that the buzz will help their product when they finally unveil it to the world.

So, how is a capital campaign like an iphone?

Capital campaigns, done well, can benefit from a similar building of excitement during the quiet phase. The quiet phase of a campaign is the stage where the agency attempts to raise 60-80% of the campaign goal in a very relational, quiet manner. Like Apple, there are no official announcements to the media or big public events—until the exact right time. The organization waits until everything is ready to announce, and that way they are assured success in the end.

The concept of the quiet phase goes against the common sense of many people. Instead, they want to announce their campaign and project to the whole world right out of the gate. I think this mindset stems from their personal passion. It assumes that everyone who hears about the new campaign/project will instantly embrace the project like they did. Unfortunately, that strategy rarely works.

The true benefit of the quiet phase is that a critical inertia is built up. Rumors spread, excitement is built, and funds come in slowly but surely. Then when the campaign is announced, it will have enough momentum to reach the finish line.

Thus, it is okay to be quiet in the early phases of a campaign. Don’t let your passion and excitement cause you to let the cat out of the bag too soon. Allow the gossip fly in your community about your exciting project. As with the upcoming iPhone, all that chatter will help your campaign when it is finally time to go public.

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