It’s not every day you get an offer in your email to buy some stock. Maybe there’ll be some vague and/or shady promotions, though I don’t remember ever getting a single one from a company I could feel comfortable with.
Until last week, that is. Two equity crowdfunding campaigns popped into my email feed on the same day.
To be on the safe side, I checked to see if I had missed any like these before. Nope.
Both of these efforts are from retailers. So, I wanted to see how they go about persuading customers to become owners.
This email’s subject line: “Want to own a piece of Xero Shoes? A special opportunity for you…”
Thanks to changes in SEC rules, the company can now offer stock to a broader range of investors.
A letter from Xero’s folksy founders (who are pictured) appears in the body of the email. It invites customers to “become part of our future.” And it provides a link that goes to a special page on their website.
There, a video explains a lot more about the company and the available investment.
But unlike the Xero Shoes offer, it takes a little longer to get to the point.
First, it runs a few pictures of women in swimsuits to remind the customer of why they’re a customer in the first place.
Then there’s some copy that starts with a quote by Warren Buffett: “Invest in what you know.”
It talks about how the customer knows how good their swimwear is. It says that women make better investors in start-ups. Nothing wrong with some flattery and girl power and … that’s about it.
It uses a link and a call to action button to get the investor to the company’s page on the StartEngine website. And that’s where there’s so much more, like a video, a heavy focus on the product, the company’s accolades, and individual team members.
Both sites require a deeper dive. Of course, there are many factors that affect how a potential investor may respond to offers like these. Thanks to the StartEngine platform, Mi Ola’s is flashier, maybe a little more impressive.
But there’s a lot to be said for Xero’s effort as well. I like the pioneering embrace of this new funding method, and how it can be used for building community around a company.
I’ll keep an eye on both retailers, and maybe invest some money of my own.