These days, crowdfunding platforms like Kickstarter, Indiegogo, and Kiva are becoming more and more important for people wanting to start their own business or bring a product to market. But not all Kickstarter projects succeed. Only 36% of Kickstarter projects get funded, which means that your project will most likely end up falling short if you can’t find the right approach to convince backers to get behind you.

And it turns out the perfect smile could be an essential component to your crowdfunding success.

Happy business woman

Compassion, Competence, and Crowdfunding

This insight comes from a new study conducted by researchers at the University of Kansas. They found that a person’s smile in their profile picture could have a big impact on the success of their crowdfunding project. The secret was to have a smile, but not too big a smile. How big is too big? That depends on the level of risk.

For this study, subjects were asked to rate creators of Kickstarter campaigns on the basis of their profile picture. The results were very clear: a smile tended to improve people’s perception of a creator. This means that a smile is significantly associated with improved success of a crowdfunding campaign. This supports the findings of an earlier study that said smiling was associated with better success on microloan platform Kiva.

But there’s also a problem with smiling. The broader the smile, the more people tended to feel warmly about the project creator, but they also tended to doubt the creator’s competence.

How did this impact the funding of projects? Researchers analyzed the smile of project creators and the success of their projects. They found that people with broad smiles tended to get more social media attention: Facebook shares, tweets, and other similar types of activity. But they didn’t get as much funding. In fact, broad smiling was associated with 50 % less total funding received, and 30% lower funding per backer.

The disparity is explained by the complex relationship between warmth and competence in the backing decision. We are more likely to want to back people if we feel warm toward them, but we are less likely to make a big contribution if we have doubts about their confidence. Thus, while a broad smile might lead to an increase in the number of backers, the total funding was reduced because each backer gave less.

Getting the Perfect Smile for You

Whether you’re smiling broadly or giving just a slight smile, it’s important to feel confident in your smile. This is crucial for conducting business in person or online. If you are unhappy with the appearance of your smile, it can make you less likely to smile.

If you find that a lack of confidence in your smile is blocking your road to success, whether in person or online, cosmetic dentistry can help. Please call (907) 349-0022 today for an appointment with an Anchorage cosmetic dentist at Excellence in Dentistry.