4 Reasons Musicians Should Embrace Crowdfunding!
January 12, 2015
As an independent artist, you've probably considered crowdfunding, known another artist who has done it, or at least heard about it. But how do you make it work?
Shu Shu Zheng from leading crowdfunding platform Pozible gives you her inside tips on why you should set up and run a successful crowdfunding campaign.
1. Own 100% of your music
You’ve put blood, sweat and tears into your music and you deserve to own it completely and distribute it however you see fit. All projects crowdfunded on Pozible are 100% owned by the project creator so you don’t need answer to any higher power.
We’ve seen musicians use this opportunity to collaborate with their fans. Jen Cloher crowdsourced the title of her album “In Blood Memory”. Sam Buckingham gave fans singing and clapping parts on her album “I’m a Bird”. Tom Dickins heavily consulted with his supporters during the making of “A Brief Case of Madness”.
Whatever you choose to do, know that this is a great opportunity to make the record you and your fans want.
2. Don’t enter the rabbit hole of debt
You don’t need to sell your car and eat two minute noodles for six months to fund your new record or tour. Pre-selling music or tickets via crowdfunding is an excellent way to get your project off the ground without going into debt. It gives you time and space to create music you and your fans will be super proud of.
Many arguments against crowdfunding say it’s begging fans for money but if fans are going to buy the album anyway, preselling it provides a win-win situation for both musician and supporter: the musician gets early funding for their project, the supporter gets first dibs on new music.
3. Get intimate with your fans
From a fan’s perspective, it’s pretty amazing when you get to connect with a musician you admire on a personal basis. I supported Georgia Fields’ crowdfunding campaign to help her make a new album. As a reward, Georgia organised a lovely picnic with cupcakes and taught me how to play the ukulele. It was a great experience and has made me a lifelong supporter of her music.
Crowdfunding is an opportunity to get to know your fans and thank them for their support. Offering merchandise and CDs are great, but you can get really creative with your rewards by offering supporters exciting money-can’t-buy experiences. We’ve seen musicians offer everything from singing parts on their albums to a year’s worth of gigs to composing a brand new song for a fan.
4. New opportunities for you and your music
Sure, crowdfunding is a great way to fund your project, but it opens more opportunities than you realise. Folk duo The April Maze were part of the first Pozible crowdfunding residency and were introduced to Hannah Acfield from The Acfields for a mentoring session. They got on so well they ended up touring together, forming new friendships and exposing each other’s music to a new audience.
Crowdfunding is great for musos who want to channel the momentum from their campaigns to open more opportunities. We’ve seen projects receive additional funding from grant bodies and councils after their campaigns were successful because they used it as proof of an audience for their project. Others like Tim Charles from Ne Obliviscaris, have spoken on panels at major music conferences to talk about crowdfunding in relation to their music.
When it comes to crowdfunding, the sky’s the limit so make it work for you. If you need more inspiration, check out the successful projects at Pozible in their music category. And don’t be afraid to reach out to a Pozible team member if you need advice.
About The Guest Author:
Shu Shu Zheng is the project advisor and community manager at Pozible. She has advised hundreds of Pozible crowdfunding campaigns and is passionate about community engagement.
Pozible is a leading global crowdfunding platform designed to help people raise funds, realise their aspirations, and make great things possible. More than 7,700 creative projects and ideas from all around the world have launched with great success.
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