By Caron Lyon from PCM Creative

PERKS are the corner stone of crowdfunding

  • Credits or logos in promotional literature.
  • Entry to your event or a ticket for a performance
  • Special edition promotional literature
  • VIP attention at your event or performance
  • Experience days - A day with the company.
  • Experience - Diner with the company
  • First edition publications to funders
  • Signed first editions…

I hope you get the idea.

A closer look

As an example and to finish I want to introduce you to Alison Weiss a singer, musician and songwriter. Alison has an established fan base that is her 'crowd' and she harnesses the power of that crowd to produce albums using crowd funding platform Kickstarter.

These are her campaigns:

Allison Weiss makes a full-length record! by Allison Weiss

Allison Weiss does it again (with your help) by Allison Weiss

A selection of the Perks from her Dec 2011 campaign to raise the funds for her next album.

  • Pledge $5 or more - THANKS - Access to exclusive updates right here on Kickstarter, plus your name and link listed on my website with a big THANKS!
  • Pledge $10 or more - JUST A TASTE - Get everything above, plus 1 track emailed to you the day of the release. JUST A TASTE, you know?!
  • Pledge $15 or more - DIGITAL PREORDER - Get everything above, plus a digital copy of the record complete with album artwork, liner notes, and a secret thank-you video.
  • Pledge $30 or more - PREORDER + PARTY FAVORS - Get everything above, plus a signed physical copy of the record, a digital goodie bag of extra videos and songs, PLUS I'll put you on the guest list for a real-life listening party to be held in NYC before the record comes out.
  • Pledge $40 or more - PAJAMA PARTY - Get everything above + a ticket to my celebratory internet show where I will play the whole record start to finish while wearing an adult-sized onesie. We'll drink, we'll laugh, we'll sing, we'll never forget. Everyone will wear pajamas including myself. It will be the greatest night of your life and you don't even have to put pants on.
  • Pledge $50 or more - DVD EXTRAS - Get everything above, plus a 'directors commentary' style DVD where producer Chris Kuffner and I talk about each song as they happen. Hear about the making-of, our favorite parts, backstories on specific songs, and how much we love each other!
  • Pledge $75 or more - HANDMADE SONGZINE - Get everything above, plus a limited edition zine-style songbook with chords, lyrics, photos, and stories about every song I've released since 2008, handmade, designed, and signed by yours truly!
  • Pledge $100 or more - REMEMBERED FOREVER - Get everything above, plus I'll list your name in the liner notes however you want it. It could be your real name (i.e. John Smith) or it could be a nickname (i.e. Bones). You could even put someone else's name in there (i.e. Grandma, Jessica Alba, The Pope). I'll also include a special note to you when I sign your copy of the record.

There were 19 Perks in total offering opportunities in exchange for up to $10,000

Allison Weiss

The anatomy of a successful crowdfunding campaign and of course its resulting project.

Mission Statement, your appeal to your crowd.

  • The mission video
  • The perks for support
  • The conversation
  • The target
  • The goal
  • The delivery

As well as accomplishing and smashing her funding targets (see pictures above), Alison now has an engaged audience of 'backers'. The crowdfunding platforms provide engagement tools to personalise the process. The most fundamental statistic illustrated well by Alison is how many projects she herself has contributed to.

So what do you have to offer? Blogging and sharing your journey makes for good content. Getting in to the habit of capturing and evaluating how your creative output can be seen as a perk for your audience is the challenge. Some specialist arts crowd funding platforms (not all) will assist you in compiling your campaign.

I will look at platforms and resources to get you started in post 4.

To do:
Write a list of the PERKs you can offer. Crowdfunding for the arts can work.

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