Clearbanc wants to help entrepreneurs leave a lasting impression on Facebook by fuelling access to the platform’s immense advertising reach.
The Toronto-based fintech company partnered with the social media giant to launch Chrged, a new program that provides North American e-commerce businesses with up to $500,000 in Clearbanc capital to tap into Facebook’s marketing solutions.
“Right now, e-commerce companies use Facebook as their primary growth channel. I saw that with Dragons’ Den companies firsthand,” said Michele Romanow, co-founder of Clearbanc and the youngest Dragon on Dragons’ Den.
There are currently over 70 million active business pages on Facebook and an additional eight million business profiles on Facebook-owned Instagram.
“Facebook allows you to test your product on a low budget… You can run an ad for $20 and you can see what is resonating with customers,” she said.
Romanow used the example of Tapplock—a company she backed on Dragon’s Den—which raised $200,000 on Kickstarter for its fingerprint-based padlock, but at the same time had zero online sales.
“Within their second month of buying Facebook ads, they could see it was costing them a very reasonable amount to advertise. Now we can give them $100,000 to quadruple the size of their business through the platform,” she said.
Romanow explained that through Chrged, Clearbanc will give businesses in both Canada and the U.S. up to half a million in capital and access to additional support to grow their business on Facebook, including cross-border resources and e-learning tools. That’s something Romanow said banks can’t offer entrepreneurs.
“Typically when you are looking for capital as a small or medium-sized business, you go to any bank and they ask you for a business plan and a personal guarantee. Whereas Clearbanc offers non-dilutive financing—a capped royalty structure.”
Chrged uses a company’s business data to determine if they’re eligible for the program. Romanow said they’ll be looking at companies with an online business that have had returns on adspend. Businesses simply connect their Facebook Ad Account and payment processor to be considered for Clearbanc’s revenue-based financing.
The Chrged Program is part of Facebook’s Master Series: a resource platform for e-commerce entrepreneurs designed to provide curated information, business tools and guidance.
Facebook bills the new platform as an accurate and cost-effective way to reach customers in the “new mobile world,” stating there’s more than five million active advertisers on Facebook—many that are small and medium-sized businesses.
Clearbanc provides financial services tailored for entrepreneurs, freelancers and the gig workforce, namely Airbnb hosts. Launched nearly two years ago, the Toronto fintech company currently has 25,000 clients.