Tag Archives | Kickstarter

PW: Kickstarter comic projects have success rate above 50 percent

Publisher’s Weekly has a new article looking at the success rate of crowdfunding publishing projects. It’s a worthwhile read for anyone who might be taking into consideration the use of a platform like Kickstarter to jumpstart their book. According to the article Kickstarter has a success rate of a little more than 50 percent when it comes to funding comics. However, don’t let that go to your head too much as there’s much more that goes into a successful crowdfunding campaign than simply wanting to do a crowdfunding campaign. Check out the article, but don’t forget to weigh all of the different crowdfunding platforms before taking the plunge.

Bay Area Crowdfunding: The New Parkway Facade

newparkwayNot comic book related, but a very worthy mention for one of the coolest indie movie theaters in the United States. Oakland’s New Parkway is raising money to put a new façade on the space. Not only will this help bring attention to the theater, but also make a glum section of 24th & Telegraph a little brighter. The Kickstarter has less than 39 hours left and they’re more than $20,000 away from their goal, so the chances they’ll get what they need this round isn’t likely. This is less of plea for readers of The Shared Universe to pledge, but more of a hope that The New Parkway will try again.

It should be noted that I only found out about this campaign this morning thanks to a sponsored post on Facebook. It’s tragic really, because I spent eight hours in The New Parkway lobby for CAAMFest on Sunday and if there was anything alerting patrons to the Kickstarter it certainly didn’t catch my eye. If they relaunch the campaign I have a handful of suggestions for making a more successful campaign:

1. Have they sought a façade improvement grant through the city of Oakland? The city has limited funds earmarked for helping businesses make better first impressions. There’s no guarantee that The New Parkway would qualify, but I’d like to know the theater at the least made the effort.

2. What materials will go into the façade? How much labor? One of the many things I love about The New Parkway is the entire venue is very DIY. I imagine this will continue when creating the new façade and as a backer I’d like to know how much of the funding is going toward materials and how much is going toward manual labor.

3. How will they promote the campaign? What’s the plan for getting the word out? Any in-house events planned?

4. Lower backer levels. Statistically projects with reward levels of $20 or less are more likely to succeed. Kickstarter isn’t shy about sharing data, so it’s known that Kickstarters without a reward level under $20 only succeed 28 percent of the time while those with a reward level below $20 succeed 45 percent of the time.  Also, the most popular backer level is $25.

5. More updates. I have no statistics on updates, but I do know when I back a campaign I feel more connected if I receive four or five updates during the life of the campaign. In addition to feeling valued it keeps the campaign in my mind and I push it out to friends. For the first Kickstarter the New Parkway made eight updates during the life of the campaign, but this time they only made their first three days ago.

The New Parkway is an amazing space and it deserves to have a top notch street facing showcase.  If you haven’t been it’s worth checking out.

Bay Area Comic Crowdfunding: The Rattler

The Rattler prismatic

The Rattler prismatic

Why did I invest in the Kickstarter for Jason McNamara and Greg Hinkle’s horror graphic novel The Rattler? Because if I’m going to trust anyone to put out a solid horror comic it’s going to be the guy who says he writes graphic novels because he wants “every child in America to believe Two-Face wants to chop them into little pieces.”  Bonus: It includes an artist who went on an epic San Francisco bender with James Robinson in an effort to come up with an original concept for a new Airboy series.

According to Kickstarter The Rattler is a 96-page “atmospheric thriller that delivers strong characterization, a dark sense of humor and moments of abject terror.”

The last two years have seen a healthy  increase in horror comics, but it’s still rare to find a title that can instill genuine terror. Many of the early reviews of The Rattler seem to suggest this book succeeds in bringing terror and tension. The graphic novel came to my attention thanks to an enthusiastic write-up on Nerdlocker who says “I was terrified of what was waiting to jump out at me in the next panel.” Greg Burgas, writing for ComicBookResources, backs this up adding “Reading the book is a fairly white-knuckle experience, and it’s partly because McNamara knows how to manipulate the reader well.”

The Kickstarter launched today and is shooting for a modest $4,600.  There are some great backer rewards including a rad prismatic sticker you can use to decorate your Trapper Keeper.


Dead Universes: Kickstart the “compiler”

Well, this is certainly a timely Kickstarter for my current Dead Universe habit.

One of the most difficult parts of collecting a Dead Universe is all of the floppies. Most Universes meet their demise before they have the opportunity to publish in trade formats and so few of us are skilled in bookbinding. Alex Rodriquez is providing the perfect solution in the form of the the “compiler comic binder” (hat tip, Comics Alliance).

Unlike library binding, this is non-permanent, non-destructive and reversible. Take comics in and out at will. Comics are held in place by a wire that snaps at the top and is attached at the bottom of the post (no small pieces to lose). The cover is a translucent flexible cover so that you can see the contents. In addition, the spine includes a spot for a label so that you and others can see the contents at a glance.

Rodriquez has completed the prototype for the “compiler” and the Kickstarter will allow him to produce the first batch of compilers. More details at the Kickstarter page.

DIY Comics: Conversion rates of crowdfunding

Independent comic creators turning to crowdfunding to get projects off the ground has become common. Results tend to be mixed with some striking their goal and flat-lining, some barely getting out the gate and failing, and the rare few that go viral and raise mountains of cash above and beyond the goal.  As a regular contributor to crowdfunded projects I’ve developed a fairly good sense for what will fail and what will be successful. Knowing the trends is important, because even if a project does receive all of the requested funding that doesn’t mean it’ll be successful.

In addition to supporting projects I’ve been on the other side by successfully launching a project using a lesser known crowdfunding platform called StartSomeGood. Making the decision to choose SSG wasn’t easy. At the time it was very new to the crowdfunding game, so it didn’t have the reach of Kickstarter or IndieGoGo. We knew that if we chose SSG the success would be completely contingent on our ability to get the word out. Our final decision to choose SGG was due to two reasons. First of all, their mission was specifically targeted at nonprofits and we were raising these funds as a nonprofit. It was a good fit in that sense. The clincher was the “tipping point” model. In order to build the foundation for what we wanted to do we knew we needed to raise at the least $3500. If we raised a dime less than that the funding would have been pointless. We also knew that in order to completely fund the project and go above and beyond we’d need $10,000 and we wanted people to know that. SSG makes the tipping point and ideal funding goal posts very visible.

We were able to raise $1501 beyond our tipping point goal which was more than we needed to get started. I have nothing but good things to say about my experience with SSG. The team behind the site constantly provided input on how to make the campaign most successful and we’re quick to respond to queries. One of the founders even contributed to our campaign, which meant a great deal to me.

Knowing I’ll likely be doing a new crowdfunded project in the future I keep an eye on the trends, especially when it comes to determining which site will be the best to use. If I’m raising money for freelance journalists again I’d likely return to SSG. However, if I’m doing something more personal, like trying to fund a comic, I’d probably go with either Kickstarter or IndieGoGo.

This morning Compete released a study comparing the conversion rates of Kickstarter and IndieGoGo. The study shows that Kickstarter, being the current market leader with the highest traffic rate, is also the best when it comes to visitors completing the pledge process. IndieGoGo, with half the traffic of Kickstarter, has been closing in on the more popular sites conversion rate. IndieGoGo could be doing much better and the studies author deduces “if I were Indiegogo, this would be the most concerning. Although a 58% abandonment rate is on track with ecommerce averages, it is nowhere near the 35% abandonment rate their direct competitor is seeing.”

Why is IndieGoGo’s abandonment rate so high?
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