Startup UpViral raised $600K through ‘alternative’ crowdfunding

UpViral, a startup for building contests and giveaways, has raised $600,000 during a 7-day crowdfunding campaign. The funding will enable UpViral to scale out sales and marketing and more rapidly develop the company’s marketing platform.

UpViral is an online platform to build plug-and-play “Dropbox-style” referral campaigns that have the ability to quickly go viral. These campaigns leverages social media by incentivizing people to share the campaign with others in order to unlock rewards or increase their chance of winning a contest. “One of our beta-testers collected well over 100,000 new email subscribers within the first 30 days of testing UpViral”, said Wilco de Kreij, the Company’s CEO.

The startup was inspired by the success of Dropbox’s customer referral program. It allowed them to grow from 100,000 registered users to 4 million registered users in just 15 months, a dazzling 3900% growth. During that time 35% of daily signups came directly from their referral program.

Instead of raising external capital and thereby watering down their ownership, they took a different and more unique approach. They initially bootstrapped an early version of the platform out of their own pockets, where after they offered to become a “founding member” during a 7-day event. During those 7 days customers were able to get access at a special low price. “It’s win-win”, said Wilco. “Early action-takers get access at a special rate, while we raise funding to fuel further development without watering down”.

The 7-day campaign made a huge impact. More than 3,000 people became a founding member of UpViral, raising a total of $600,000 in just 7 days.

The international team plans to use it’s funding to fuel further development and expend into new markets. “We only just got started – and this campaign helps us to achieve our goals”, said Wilco de Kreij. The team currently exists of 9 people but aims to scale up quickly.

​About UpViral

UpViral is an online marketing company that specializes in referral marketing. It provides a plug-and-play platform that makes it easy to create incentivized referral marketing campaigns such as giveaways and sweepstakes, which have the ability to quickly go viral.

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