As you may or may have known, I recently launched an IndieGoGo campaign in late July. 10 days before the campaign ended, I reached and exceeded my goal! How did I make this happen? I was rather astonished myself, but after closer review, I broke it down for you.
1. Supportive friends & family: This is by far an away the most important and amazing thing about the whole process. I got to see so many people who support me step up and really do it. I was amazed at the response from people who have no real reason to give me their 5, 10, 25, 50 dollars. I think they see my hard work, they see my passion and how much I have put in specifically over the last two year push to get this recording done and play EVERY SINGLE weekend! More then just being my friends and family, I think that they have seen my drive, they want to support me because I want to support me. If you are not doing anything with your music career, its not a great idea to get into the crowd funding campaigns and start asking people for money, while you provide no content or services for them.
2. Set an Attainable Goal: This is massively important. The whole time the campaign was going on, I was wondering..."should I have made my goal less?" Then as soon as I reached my goal I thought to myself..."should I have made my goal higher?" Im sure there is a fine line you will walk when selecting your monetary goal, but be realistic. Think about your supporters, fans, and followers, are you really going to get 10,000 dollars out of them for your new music video? Probably not! Unless you are working ridiculously hard, have a huge following and playing big shows, that would be a silly goal to reach for. Its also good to set an attainable time frame. Generally 25-35 days long is the best length for success. I would generally set the campaign around a month of dates you have booked at big venues or large crowds. This way you will be exposing your website, social networks, AND your current indiegogo campaign.
3. Provide Services as perks: My perks were not physical items that would cost me additional overhead. I am not in a position to offer prizes and iPads and crazy things. All I could offer was the music I was raising money for, and services I could provide if you were a fan of mine. My firsts perk was asking for a $2 donation, and for $5 you could get my upcoming release early. For $50 dollars (which I think is a little low, now looking back but any higher was probably unaffordable for my demographic) I would learn and record a live off the floor version of your favourite song. I had a number of people buy into this one and it was a great challenge for me to learn new songs and try to fit them to the listeners personal tastes. My last perk was a private concert or event. This was $400 and I would come to your location and perform for 4 hours. I had one taker on this one and they booked me for a new years party at their private location. This was the big perk that closed out my goal and helped me exceed the $700 goal.
4. Sell it at Your Shows: Its great to do the Facebook and twitter shares and all that fun stuff. But I was able to bring a small poster (with a barcode that could be scanned) to my shows where I would talk about the options for a free custom song recording or a private house concert. I believe this was one of the biggest keys to my success. I was able to get fans at shows to purchase perks and help me get my new music out. I find that making that personal connection at a show is so powerful that they will purchase your merch and support you however they can, if you can reach out and touch their soul! Make it happen, and sell yourself with every performance.
5. Proper Online Marketing: I made it very clear where the donations and money would be going, and I was open about the situation. I needed to finish the mix and mastering, and then get some download cards and CD's done up. I mentioned I had already spent a significant chunk of my budget on the recording and engineering. AS with most large projects like a car restoration or home renovation. its very easy to break the budget after you get into things. So this campaign was to help me finish my new music, I wasn't leaving the entire project up to my fans to pay for. I have done most of the work and payments already, just need to finish the job and so I thought I would crowd fund once my well was tapped out.
Next time, I will hopefully have some improvements to my campaign and approach, but I will never leave the entire project up to crowd funding. ITs best to show your fans the initiative to get the project rolling or at least half done on your own.
Thanks for checkin in,