Film & Video Crowdfunding: Which Platform Is Best For Your Project?

 CrowdFunding Beat Sr. Editor CEO 

Crowdfunding has reached just about every conceivable industry and product category. From wearable technology and tailgating coolers, to social-oriented causes and artistic projects, the power of crowdfunding has enabled a host of individuals to tap large crowds in order to fund, market and promote their goals.

And while the reach of crowdfunding is broad, its effects have not been altogether even, and some campaign categories face unique challenges in crowdfunding. Film and Video projects, for instance, face a number of unique challenges.

First, such campaigns often have difficulty coming up with concrete rewards for their supporters. In other words, while a campaign for the “Coolest Cooler” can offer individuals a first chance to obtain the coveted product, a film or video is a much less tangible final product, and it makes for a lower converting reward. This distinction is critical because however much someone likes your cause, crowdfunding supporters don’t want to simply “donate,” they want to receive something valuable in return for their contribution.

Secondly, film and video campaigns are more likely than other categories to benefit from platforms with flexible funding options rather than the “all or nothing” model that crowdfunding platforms like Kickstarter utilize. Film projects, perhaps more than other categories, are able to alter their production budgets to accommodate a slightly tighter budget, and are also more likely to obtain subsequent rounds of funding from other sources after production begins.

As a result, those of you who pursue film and video projects may benefit from focusing on a few specific metrics in the crowdfunding space as well as the distinctive capabilities of certain crowdfunding platforms.

Take for instance the question of which campaign platform to use for film and video projects. In your search for the biggest platform, Krowdster’s platform analytics tool reports that the two biggest platforms in terms of total funds raised are (no surprise) Kickstarter and Indiegogo, with $1.1 Billion and $239 Million respectively in the United States.

However the campaign success rates on each platform present a different picture.

The diagram below, which indicates the overall success statistics for the film and video category on each platform, clearly shows a remarkably low success rate for Indiegogo (just 11%), while Tubestart, Pozible and Kickstarter lead at 70%, 57% and 38% respectively.

As we look at this data, we begin to see a picture of platforms where Indiegogo may not be as attractive due to its high failure rate. And if we dig deeper and eliminate the platforms that use exclusively “all or nothing” funding methods, we are left with a surprising takeaway – Tubestart actually emerges as perhaps the most unique and flexible candidate for film and video projects.

In addition to being the most successful, flex-funding platform for the film and video category, Tubestart offers a host of unique benefits that may specifically appeal to film projects. For instance, Tubestart offers Hands Free Rewards Fulfillment, a service that addresses the unique challenge that film and video project face in providing valuable rewards. Tubestart partnered with Spreadshirt and CafePress to offer campaigners on their site a wide range of custom-taylored “swag” that campaigners can offer to their supporters. Importantly, these providers handle the orders, shipping, and returns on behalf of the campaigner, making it truly a hands free operation.

Another unique feature of the rewards on Tubestart are the biddable rewards. This feature enables a campaigner to let the supporters compete for select rewards by bidding on them, rather than merely assigning a value to rewards at the outset of the campaign. Such rewards not only give the campaigner the chance to obtain more cash for a given reward, it also enables the supporters to engage the campaign on a more active level (they may constantly check the site to see if their bid is still highest).

Tubestart also offers two other unique advantages for film and video campaigners. First, given the importance of the initial phase of fundraising, support sites such as the Thunderclap and Prefundia have emerged to help amplify your message. Tubestart enables you to integrate these pre-funding sites in a way that does not direct you away from the funding site, and therefore provides clarity along with an amplified announcements. Second, Tubestart enables you to embed live feeds into your campaign page, which can be especially useful for projects that have less tangible final products. For instance, you can provide a live feed to a casting call for your film, and allow supporters to get a sense of the actors and characters that will be bringing the film to life—all in real time.

These features position Tubestart as a unique option that appears ideally suited to film and video projects although you have to know that Tubestart is highly curated and only a good fit for high quality projects that are serious about succeeding. Its yet another reason to look beyond superficial data that appears to reveal the “biggest” platform, and instead look at the more targeted data to find out what works best in the film and video category.

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