Start-ups often post updates during equity crowdfunding campaigns. However, little is known about the effects of such updates on crowd participation. We investigate this question by using hand-collected data from 71 funding campaigns and 39,399 investment decisions on two German equity crowdfunding portals. Using a combination of different empirical research techniques, we find that posting an update has a significant positive effect on the number of investments made by the crowd and the investment amount collected by the start-up. This effect does not occur immediately in its entirety; rather, it lags the update by a few days. Furthermore, the effect of updates loses statistical significance with the number of updates posted during a campaign. We also find that an easier language used in updates increases crowd participation, whereas the length of updates has no effects. With respect to the update’s content, we find that the positive effect can be attributed to updates about new developments of the start-up such as campaign developments, new funding, business developments, and cooperation projects. Updates on the start-up team, business model, product developments, and promotional campaigns do not have meaningful effects. Our paper contributes to the literature on the effects of information disclosure on equity crowdfunding participation. Furthermore, our results have practical implications for start-ups and their investor communication during equity crowdfunding campaigns.

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Small Business Economics: an entrepreneurship journal
Department of Applied Economics

Block, J. (Jörn), Hornuf, L. (Lars), & Moritz, A. (Alexandra). (2017). Which updates during an equity crowdfunding campaign increase crowd participation?. Small Business Economics: an entrepreneurship journal, 1–25. doi:10.1007/s11187-017-9876-4