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Raising Money With Kickstarter: The Musician’s Guide

Kickstarter is a great tool for musicians to use when raising money for your next creative project.  Musicians such as Julia Nunes have found great success using the platform raise money for albums, tours, and music videos.

I decided to start a Kickstarter crowdfunding/fanfunding campaign in an attempt to raise money for our Fall 2010 Emerging Artists Compilation, Hear Here. Kickstarter has been getting a lot of press lately for helping artists fund creative projects by asking fans and the Kickstarter community to pledge money in return for rewards.  Over the next 30 days (the length of the Hear Here Kickstarter campaign), I’ll chronicle the campaign’s progress. Hopefully, the final product will be a guide on how to successfully run a Kickstarter campaign.

Day 1: Launching the Project

One of the first things Kickstarter suggests when launching is producing a video to post on the project’s home page.  I’m not a very enthusiastic person, so I decided to create a movie trailer-style teaser backed by music from one of the compilation’s musicians, J-Royal.  The finished product:

Once I posted the video, I put up a description of the project along with a fund raising goal and pledge rewards (I’ll do  separate posts on determining goals and rewards this week. Preview, edit, and launch…the project went live Monday, October 11, 2010 at 8:34 PM.

Day 2: Our First Update and Backer

Part of  running a successful Kickstarter campaign is getting your active fan base involved. Since Hear Here is made of up 12 musicians with fans, I decided to appeal to them.   We had each participating act produce a promotional video, which we  edit and include in a project update.  Our first promo featured The Love Experiment’s Charles Burchell:

Not long after we posted the first update, we got our first backer. Apparently, it helps if your potential backers can connect with the artists who will be on the compilation.

Next, check out part two. We talk about budgets, pledge amounts, and rewards.

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