Upstart is a new kind of funding platform. A cross between a loan and venture capital, it allows accredited investors to invest in true human capital. My alma mater, RISD, participated in the pilot program, and I was the first RISD student chosen to participate. I met with investors regularly, promoted myself online through video and was fully funded because of it.
This is the most recent video I released. For it, I gathered the feedback of several investors and tailored it to their needs. I outlined a trajectory and encouraged investors to invest in it. I also put my work front and center to leverage the visual nature of what I do.
At the time of this first video, my vision was very broad. I realized that a broad vision can be hard to invest in but I had to start the campaign immediately. So, instead of a plan, I shared my experience, beliefs and world view. Through visual motifs, I tried to capture my demeanor as a personality and manipulate the emotions of viewers.
Investment is social, like anything else. To gain investment, I gave several talks, and rubbed elbows with potential investors. I organized money matches and leveraged investor peer pressure to gain thousands more in investment.