Seven reasons why content creators and producers should give crowdfunding a try.
1. A raised profile
A successful crowdfunding campaign for a compelling project can help raise a producer’s profile and provide a boost to his reputation.
2. A proven market
Crowdfunding is a great way for creators to develop proof that the concept for their project has a potential audience and market. In the case of an unsuccessful campaign, it provides good market feedback that a certain concept is not viable. Beyond simply reaching the funding goal, which provides one level of proof, analytics regarding the number of backers, contributors or pledges are invaluable in terms of estimating the size of the project’s audience.
3. Audience building
The funding campaign itself and all the promotional efforts around the campaign have the added benefit of promoting the project itself among existing and new audiences. There is also a large opportunity for direct distribution through crowdfunding when using a pre-sale model.
4. Audience engagement
One of the most unique add-on benefits of crowdfunding is its role as a forum where content creators can engage with their audiences and audiences can engage with meaningful content. Audiences are increasingly interested in the creation of the content they consume and producers are increasingly looking for new ways to engage with their audiences more deeply. Through crowdfunding, audiences can both contribute financially to a project they care about, and engage in the production process by following progress through updates from the creators and sharing feedback via comment features on the project’s crowdfunding page.
5. Audience Feedback
One of the follow-on effects of being able to engage with audiences through crowdfunding is that content creators can use crowdfunding websites to gather important creative feedback from their audiences as the project develops. For example, beyond just the proof of concept feedback that comes from completing a successful campaign, project owners can gather more specific creative feedback from contributors or other visitors about specific aspects of the project through a comment feature on their campaign page, which is available on most crowdfunding platforms. In addition, offering pre-release access to content and/or the opportunity to beta-test content as part of a funding incentive package provides creators with instant access to good market testing feedback on the project.
6. International support for Canadian projects
Crowdfunding provides a unique opportunity to attract audiences and investors from around the world to support Canadian productions, thereby expanding the market reach of Canadian-produced content.
7. Reaching out to a younger demographic
Crowdfunding can engage a younger demographic in supporting Canadian content. According to a 2016 US-based study:
- 30% of those aged 18-29 donated to a crowdfunding campaign in 2015;
- Only 18% of those aged 50-64 donated to a crowdfunding campaign;
- 87% feel more connected to the projects they support;
- 84% crowdfund to help highlight a cause or business.