To recreate the crowdfunding profiles I gathered all the research I’d collected so far and divided it up in to profiles, videos, rewards and communication. I also gathered three case studies from Indiegogo, Kickstarter and Seed&Spark.
- ‘Who will write our History’ by Robert Grossman: Successful- https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/who-will-write-our-history-production#/
- ‘No Greater Love’ by Justin Roberts: Flexible Funding (Unsuccessful) – https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/no-greater-love–29#/
- ‘NO ALTERNATIVE: Feature Film’ by William Dickerson: Flexible funding (unsuccessful) https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/no-alternative-a-feature-film-rap#/
- ‘Tightly Wound’ by Shelby Hadden: Successful – https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1198198214/tightly-wound
- ‘In a Heartbeat’ Animated short film by Beth + Esteban: Successful – https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/688971352/in-a-heartbeat-animated-short-film
- ‘Magpie’ by Paul Cook: Successful – https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/paulcook/magpie
- ‘Ordinary Women’ by Anita Sarkeesian: Successful – https://www.seedandspark.com/fund/ordinary-women#story
- ‘The Big Heist’ by Health Rosetta Films: Successful – https://www.seedandspark.com/fund/thebigheist#updates
By anyalsing these case studies I was able to draw comparisons and differences that may have added to there success. All three platforms are reward based services therefore the filmmakers offer incentives to funders such as t-shirts, set-access and other perks.
Both Kickstarter and Indiegogo took a more personalised approach to there profiles and didn’t give much detail of the actual production requirements. The content and layouts were very similar. The benefit of Indiegogo is clearly the flexible funding. If a filmmaker is unsure on how much to donate they can put a larger sum than required but still expect some funds if they don’t reach there full amount. This however lowers there stats for successful campaigns as seen above ‘No Greater Love’ and ‘No Alternative’. Kickstarter therefore gives crowdfunders and backers more urgency to complete the project. This was confirmed by James Fair’s reasoning for choosing the platform “all or nothing helps the psychology of funders.” This contributes to the higher success rate for film campaigns.
Seed&Spark takes a more technological and professional approach. These are professorial filmmakers who need money to create there films. The profiles therefore detail more information about the projects and detail exactly where the money will go and how it will be used. The wish list function also allows filmmakers to request specific items or money towards specific areas of the filmmaking process.
All examples included video detailing the project and why the money was needed. On many platforms this has become a must. The videos ranged from 1-3mins and were personalised to these projects. I noted the more professional the video, the higher chance of success for a campaign. The video is the first thing a user sees on all three platforms. Many of the videos detailed a journey of the filmmakers progress and where they need to go next.
To create my video campaign I worked alongside Christopher Taylor and Victoria Charles. To keep it as natural and passionate as possible we conducted it in an interview style manner in front of a green screen so we could add images later with more information. This worked well as we spoke how we really felt about the project rather than it being scripted. I would have like more time to edit the video and possibly design it further. Due to time constraints we were also missing the director so we know this version will not be used for the actual campaign but does allow me to draw further comparisons with my case studies. We focused on what makes the production unique, where the money will go and why it is special to us and needs to be made. We know some re-shoots are in order which will be completed Feb 2017.
Each case study included a rewards based system for donating. These generally ranged from £1 – £3000 depending on the target. Rewards included:
- Copies of the script
- Screening tickets
- DVD copies
- Director meetings/sessions
- After party tickets
- Opportunity to be an extra
- Executive producer roles
- Donations to charities
And the list goes on. Each product also varied in price with no set measurement. On one profile a t-shirt could be £30 while on another it could be £60. Pricing is decided based of a filmmakers needs and position i.e. is shipping include, item cost and time.
Max Silverman CEO of Seed&Spark states “The most successful incentives are visual, sharable and free to make. For example, a historical event with the contributor’s face photoshopped in. The most common contribution level is $25, so this is often the best level to include these.” in an interview 10/11/2016.
Using my case study examples, further research and advice from former crowdfunders I have compiled a list of what ‘Canary’s incentives could look like. To do this I researched the cost of making each item and posting it to the recipient. Some of the rewards are free to make and send, which saves production costs. Where possible the rewards help to promote the project as well such as badges, clothing and posters. Larger rewards include set visits. To improve these more I need to go directly to my target audience and ask them what they would like to receive and how much they are willing to pay as this may affect how successful an amount is.
In a survey to crowdfunders, 100% said they promoted there project on social media.
Without promoting there projects none of the case studies would have received donations. This part is often overlooked and the hardest part of a crowdfunding campaign. It requires a lot of time. Not all posts needed to be linked to the campaign some discussed the subject. James Fair’s 72 Project would release cast, crew and location information when targets were met to keep funders interested and interacting with the project.
Following my case studies’ example I have planned each day of communication during the project in different social media formats. I have tried to make them as engaging as possible with the final couple of days focused solely on the project. At the same time we would be facebook/twitting personal thank yous to those who donate. I have also tried to include mini target accomplishments although it is impossible to tell now what they would be. To futher test this I would go directly to my target audience as ask them where they would want to find this information and what they would like to know (Oakley 2016).
Using the surveys, industry interviews and research I applied the information gained and created two mock-ups. I decided that due to the similarities between Indiegogo and Kickstarter I would only recreate one for the both of them following Kickstarters format. This decisions was made due to the difference between flexible funding and all or nothing.
These mock-ups will now be reviewed and adjusted where applicable. They include as much information as possible about the project so far with further details to find more information. Both recreations include information about:
- The Story
- The Team
- Directors Statement
The recreations are then tailored to the site with Seed&Spark giving further details about the production and the Kickstarter profile taking a more personal approach. When applying this in the future I think I would do a combination of both so that users have as much information as possible and can trust the project will be a success.
In conclusion further testing and reviewing is needed to make the information fit the target audience and therefore gain as many backers as possible. This will be done throughout the Christmas period.
Gerber, E., Hui, J. and Kuo, P.-Y. (2016) Crowdfunding: Why People Are Motivated to Post and Fund Projects on Crowdfunding Platforms. Available at: https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Pei_Yi_patricia_Kuo/publication/261359489_Crowdfunding_Why_People_are_Motivated_to_Post_and_Fund_Projects_on_Crowdfunding_Platforms/links/00463533f6db1c5c01000000.pdf (Accessed: 11/10/2016).
Howkins, J. (2002) The creative economy: How people make money from ideas. London: Penguin Global. Pages 65-67.
Indiegogo (2016) Indiegogo: The largest global Crowdfunding & fundraising site online. Available at: https://www.indiegogo.com/#/picks_for_you (Accessed: 9 November 2016).
James Fair. (2016) James Fair Scrapbook. Available at: http://www.jamesfair.co.uk/scrapbook (Accessed: 28 November 2016).
Kickstarter (2016) Kickstarter homepage. Available at: http://www.kickstarter.com (Accessed: 9 November 2016).
Oakley, P. (2016) Social Media Marketing Tips with Phillip Oakley. Be Inspired Staffordshire University. Stoke-on-Trent, 19/10/2016. (Presentation).
Renninger, B.J. (2013) Kickstarter, Indiegogo, seed & spark? Comparing Crowdfunding platform success rates when it comes to film projects. Available at: http://www.indiewire.com/2013/08/kickstarter-indiegogo-seed-spark-comparing-crowdfunding-platform-success-rates-when-it-comes-to-film-projects-35790/ (Accessed: 2 January 2017).
Seed (2016) Seed&Spark: Fund movies. Watch movies. Empower diverse voices. Available at: https://www.seedandspark.com/ (Accessed: 9 November 2016).
Silverman, M. (2016) Seed&Spark Interview Questions. Simms, E. Email. (10/11/2016).