The art and science of creating technology is very different from the art of marketing. Though one may think that great technology markets and "sells itself", the truth is quite contrary. There are numerous examples in past and recent history where the best or even greatest invention never made it anywhere because the forces bringing it to market were weak or insufficient.
I peruse a lot of crowdfunding campaigns in the course of a single day. Some of them catch my attention immediately. Not only that, but they hold onto it and occasionally make me reach into my pocket, pull out my debit card, and tap in the 16 digits it takes to become a proud contributor.
We all did our part. I, like many others, was in New York during Hurricane Sandy. Wow! I've been in New York for many years. I saw the blackout, the winter of 2010, the blizzard of '96. None of those came close to what Sandy brought to this city. Luckily everyone I know was safe (though some displaced), and though Lucky Ant offices did not have power for a week and our servers went down, we can't help but count our blessings.
It's a $133 Million dollar industry - and I'll prove it. This is quite a bit different from the reports you may see that claim it's $1.5 Billion. In March of this year I contacted the top 20 crowdfunding companies. I collected the total amount of money each platform raised & compiled it into a crowdfunding market report. The total raised reported directly from the founders of these companies: $133 Million.
Last month, I held a seminar at the 2nd Annual Golden Door International Film Festival of Jersey City on my three Ps for a successful indie film campaign, that of a solid pitch, some cool perks, and plenty of promotion. As I got into that last section, I asked how many people in the audience have a Facebook and Twitter account?" A few people raised their hands. Then I asked how many of them are active on those networks, posting content relevant to indie film at least once a day. Some hands went down.
Unless you've avoided newspapers like the plague over the last year or so, you know that some people in the United States aren't exactly happy with their healthcare. Insurance companies bog down the system, potentially fruitful developments get underfunded and lost in red tape, and the average citizen has very little say in terms of changing the care he or she receives, meaning that the concerns of niche communities can fall to the wayside.
Like most people on the East Coast, the folks behind crowdfunding platform Lucky Ant have been huddled up watching the news.
When I was in college I took a very interesting course on the wisdom (or lack thereof) of crowds. We studied crowd mentality both in psychology and politics. We looked at how crowds formed and what happened when they did.
When you're hit with the news that one of your daughters has leukemia, would you go through the typical stages of grief as laid out by Kübler-Ross, or setup a crowdfunding campaign to cover your medical bills? American folk singer-songwriter, Alastair Moock, went an unusual path and setup a GoFundMe page to raise $15,000 - to record an album.
Last week I was discussing the similarity crowdfunding projects have to the original Facebook games, with the Daily Crowdsource staff. Remember when your pre-timeline facebook page was filled with requests to join your fellow friends tackling angry mobsters & crop farming? The success of Facebook games took off through the tactic of encouraging participants to invite their friends. A brilliant move to grow the game company's audience, but a poor tactic for keeping friends.