by Helena Kaufman
How Rewards Keep Your Funding Coming In
In our introduction to Kickstarter, the innovative platform for seeking capital to make creative projects happen, we agreed that Step 1 naturally starts with the idea. The concept is closely followed by its being fleshed out.
Would you be surprised if I told you your next step with Kickstarter should be how to reward your supporters?
Engage Early and Satisfy
Indeed, Step 2 in Kickstarter’s suggested process is developing the ‘rewards’. Since supporters cannot buy into a project for a percentage in return for capital, incentives are required.
You create a ladder of rewards, with different elements offered for different levels of support; you are doing something far more brilliant than attracting a flow of money. Your rewards are offering patrons:
- The experience of participating in your art and progress in your process of fulfilling it
- Engagement in the elements that make your work valuable
- An advance sample of your talent that you are testing and that your patrons will be talking about
What are the rewards doing for you?
Thinking about the rewards to offer, early, helps an artist see what essential experiences delight or privileged peeks a supporter might value. For some, it may help structure the work and motivate concrete results through a kind of accountability to a ‘waiting’ audience who have chosen to support you. The creation of awards and their enjoyment is a bonding experience that elevates everyone involved in a Kickstarter project – creators and supporters alike.
See Through Your Audience’s Eyes
Gain new perspectives about your work when you allow yourself to see and feel the excitement and interest your work stirs in someone else. The process of pleasing your supporters, without compromising your principles or direction, but rather delighting new initiates, might boost your own estimation of your work, its value and impact. All the better to increase your connection with your audience and enhance your creative energies.
Kickstarter reward suggestions include fun experiences – like visits to a studio or set, inclusion in the credits, attendance at an event hosted by the artist or tangible mementos such as copies of the finished album, CD, limited editions. Or, you can include your patron in the story, song, art or credits as thanks for their contribution to the flow of both cash and creativity.
Be in touch,
Helena Kaufman is a writer and communications trainer. In 1982, success at promoting, marketing and writing about 200 artisans launched Helena as an event publicist. The designers who sold at the Annual Manitoba Christmas Craft Sale exhibited original functional and decorative pieces in fibre, pottery, metal, oil, paper, wood, distinctive wearable art and more. Helena worked to raise their profile, bring media attention and increase their sales. She now shares some of that savvy in the Artisan Ally series. Helena’s writing and communications site can be found here.