I was scanning through projects on Kickstarter and I came across three very different projects all doing some really great things with a week of funding to go and I thought it worth calling them out.
Interesting all of these campaigns have plummed for around the 30-day campaign length – which brings me back to last weeks blog. As 30 days seems to be becoming the norm more and more.
‘I used to be Normal’ – A boyband Fangirl Story – Target $50,000 AUS
I found this campaign really fun, its doing so many things right. For me it has the best video of the three. An engaging video, which is effectively a trailer bookend with a lovely piece to camera from the filmmakers. They get straight to the point saying what the project is about, which I always like and then show really a well produced trailer for the film – which to be honest made me want to see the finished film, which is kind of the point. They then sum it up at the end about why they need the money – very nicely done and at 4:35 in length, its possibly slightly long but it doesn’t feel it.
They have a very clear target audience, which I love! Those that are or once were fangirls of a boyband. Simple. One Direction are clearly huge with 10s of millions of fans, and if you think of all the boyband fans from the 80’s, 90’s and 00’s it must be in the Billions! All those fans are now adults and if some of them are interesting in Kickstarter, they could well back this for nostalgias sake.
I think their artwork; in particular with some of their rewards is particular good. This offers a great opportunity to engage fans by sharing content across social media. Even if fans don’t pledge for a certain reward at least it maybe something for them to desire and share with their friends.
On the rewards side there is a nice structure to them, and it’s a nice touch how they are broken down into certain types of fans. However I’m not sure about the amount of physical rewards they have – this can be very enticing to fans, but very labour intensive from the campaign runners. Not to mention expensive to fulfil.
With 7 days to go of their campaign and at last count 10K (20%) of their funding still to get, its going to be close for these guys but they should be fine. It looks like they had a big influx in the last 24 hours they and having 342 backers, I think they’ll hit their target with no issues thanks to their existing support.
WHEELS, A film by Phil Starkman – Target $50,000
Paul has put together a lovely concise pitch video, it’s to the point and very much in the style of the film they are looking to produce. It’s a gritty, stylised, black and white video. I have a good idea of what sort of film Paul wants to make without hearing his life story. I really like that as it gives me belief he can convert that into a quality feature.
Wisely Paul has the majority of his rewards as digital only, which are easy to produce and cost very little to deliver but can offer a lot to backers. The physical rewards are also very interesting as some of them are one offs that can’t be bought anywhere else and elements like props they need to buy for the shoot anyway so why not offer them as rewards and make some money out of them?
Interestingly the campaign has done very well offering extra roles in the film for $1K, of which they have had 4 pledges. This reward is nicely bundled with other rewards, though traditionally the on screen extra type roles aren’t the things that do that well on crowdfunding. It leads me to believe that there is something in particular about the style of ‘Wheels’ with its urban feel, that fans identify with and want to be a part of.
It’s a shame Wheels has only done a few updates as there is an opportunity missed to engage the audience here. However I do like the fact that they did an open invite launch event and engaged fans outside of the online community. This is something not nearly enough crowdfunding campaigns do – as they don’t realise the network of support it can help build offline. It can also make existing backers even more invested in the project. On the flip side it can be expensive to run these events, so it has to be balanced out.
Funding wise its going to be an interesting few days for the campaign. They have 6 days to go and about $17K (34%) of their funding still to get. It will likely go down to the wire, however I think they should make their target. There are 275 invested backers, and with some engaging updates and further outreach they should be able to galvanize that support to get them over the finish line.
Hammer Horror: The Warner Brothers Years – Target $22,000
Much like ‘I used to be normal’ – they have an in built fan base with the HammerHorror fans which is coming back into fashion thanks to the likes of ‘The Woman in Black’. It’s a very specific fan base that can be targeted through online horror forums.
More importantly they appear to already have an inbuilt fan base thanks to their Diabolique Magazine it appears to already have 24 issues and it has an engaged fan base across social media and covering the horror genre. I would imagine they have a very good email database they could leverage to get the majority of their support off the ground. Email database’s can be like gold dust, and its wise for projects to partner with brands or companies that are in line with their target audience who have large email databases they can reach out to. So the fact they already have an in built target audience that fits perfectly into their target audience is fantastic.
Of the three of these campaigns, the Hammer Horror campaign certainly has done the best when it comes to updates. They have produced twelve updates throughout the campaign, all of which are different and engaging. This allows them to opportunity to be regularly reaching out to their fans with new content that can be shared across social media. I imagine this stems from their pre-existing fan base and the fact they are already writing for a magazine, so are experienced in regular publications. They feature stretch goals and more importantly new rewards that gives fans the opportunity to increase their pledge and share new visuals from the project across their own channels.
The video is a good length, however in my opinion it could do with being more to the point. I wasn’t 100% sure what they were making from the video and the intro could have spelled this out more clearer. I also believe the production value of the video could be better, to give belief in the fact the end product will be delivered to a high standard. That said it is a documentary, using mainly library footage and talking head interviews, so they have some leeway.
Funding wise they are in a great position, having already hit their target with 6 days to go. They are $1K over their $22K target – their ambition now has to be to try and get as high as possible, aiming for $30K and beyond. If they keep producing stretch goals (their current is $26K) and new rewards, though traditionally momentum dies once a film campaign hits its target - if they can keep fans engaged and invested, who knows where they might end up.
They were just a few Kickstarter campaigns out their I identified as being particularly interesting. If you have seen others that are live and worth a look, do get in touch and let me know.
I wish the campaigns good fortune in their last days and hope they all succeed in making their films a reality. If you would like to read more crowdfunding advice, then check out the rest of the articles on my blog.