I recently ran across KaVaN’s Kickstarter project.
As I dove into the project, it became apparent that it was truly a presell which was reflected in the numbers.
Then, the band was kind enough to get back to me and one of their comments really cemented this.
Which helped me realize that making the decision, presell versus fundraise, is one decision that can have a HUGE influence on your project’s potential goal and final dollar amount.
KICKSTARTER: PRESELL OR FUNDRAISER?
How you portray your Kickstarter goes a long way towards determining the funding efficacy of your project.
So, how do you decide this important question?
You are probably doing a presell if:
- You have already recorded your project and came up just short so you need help with duplication
- You are super-duper uncomfortable asking for money and feel the need to justify the project
You may be able to do a fundraise if:
- You have a fresh Artistic Vision and Purpose Worth Backing and cannot accomplish the project without others’ participation in funding
- You have confidence in yourself and your project such that you can deliver a good Call To Action asking people very directly to pledge to your project and letting them know how to do it
These are general guidelines. I’m sure there are already exceptions to them out in the Kickstarter universe.
THIS AFFECTS HOW MUCH YOU CAN RAISE
As you can probably guess, a presell is not likely to raise as much as a fundraise.
Ceterus paribus (holding other things constant ~ back to my econ geek roots!), a presell’s average $/backer will be lower than a fundraise.
It doesn’t take much math to understand the implications: a presell will raise less money than a fundraise.
A presell is selling your product, the value of which is determined by the market.
A fundraise is selling YOU ~ your vision, dream, and possibility (make sure your Kickstarter conveys this)!
People will pay a premium for this over and above the simple value of their chosen reward because they identify with your Purpose and Mission. It means something to them to help. They WANT to help!
KaVaN MUSIC KICKSTARTER PROVIDES A SIMPLE CASE STUDY
KaVaN’s Kickstarter project more or less covers the bases. It doesn’t knock anything out of the park but it is complete.
They absolutely portray their project as a presell, both in the video and the project description.
But, though they reached their funding goal, here is what they told me:
The packages for the larger amounts help you reach your goal faster and sell out faster than you’d expect. We wish we’d have put more thought into bigger, more expensive packages. ~ KaVaN
This is really good hindsight! If you are coming up on your Kickstarter, please take this to heart.
KaVaN raised $1662 from 56 backers for an average of almost $30 per backer.
This is what it is and has gotten KaVaN to their goal which is really the desired result.
If you are trying to maximize your project, remember that, while researching for our 100 Music Kickstarter series, we have consistently seen projects portrayed as fundraisers reach higher amounts, usually $60-70+ per backer.
If you do a fundraise, be sure that your project reflects this by:
- accurately communicate your Purpose and Vision in an inspirational manner
- include a strong Call To Action
- create strong mid and upper-level rewards packages that will garner backers in order to help you reach your goal