Posted tagged ‘getting funding’

Where Has All The Funding Gone?

October 20, 2010

Funding is fading! At least that’s what it feels like.

Funding for the arts has always paled in comparison to funding for other things; but I’ve noticed even more of a decline in the last year. I especially can’t believe how many “sorry our budget is much smaller this year” conversations I’ve had in the last few months.  I’m finding that I have to be more creative and sometimes less creative (read on, you’ll see what I mean) to get paid gigs.

BE DIRECT
Here’s one of those less creative options.  Sometimes we get not because we ask not. I’ve found that when I’m asked to do a pro-bono weekend gig, it’s not always possible. Just like for a waiter or waitress, Fridays and Saturdays are the best gig times – more customers (audience), more tips (sales).  This post was pretty popular when we put it up over a year ago. Check it out:  Money: Ask and You Shall Recieve…Sometimes.

HAVE AT LEAST TWO ITEMS ON YOUR MERCHANDISE TABLE
It’s weird how this works, but the more options you have, the more money you make.  Having more options guarantees that there’s an alternative for the hard-to-please customer and that you can always do bundle discounts for folks who choose to buy both albums (a perk that really does work). More often than not they’ll by both if its a good deal.

TAKE THOSE HOUSE SHOW SERIOUSLY
House shows will make you solid fans and they will also give you an intimate venue where you don’t have to split the cover with a doorman. Read this post for more details: What Are Your Thoughts on House Shows?

BE A LITTLE MORE GRASSROOTSY
Brainstorm some unconventional ways to do what you do.  Chances are, if everyone is doing it, there’s less money in it. Think of your ideas like inventions. If you create something that’s completely unique, you can patent it, put it on the market and make 100% of the profits.


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5 Things I Learned from my Kickstarter Campaign

March 31, 2010

Joy Ike

I first discoverd Kickstarter when I came across independent artist Allison Weiss last summer. KS caught my eye as an innovative idea – a recycled concept made fresh by techy art lovers using social media to help artists succeed. And they’re doing just that!

With the struggling economy, I began to reconsider whether or not I’d run a campaign for the Spring Release of my new Album, “Rumors”. Iended up launching the 10-week $3,500-goal campaign, which ends on April 2. To-date I’ve raised $4,015 (113% of my goal) and have learned a number of things that I thought I should pass on. The below is not self-glorification, just some facts that might be worth knowing. Here goes…

1. People will support you financially if they really love what you’re doing.

2. “If you spend more time thinking about the $$$ than the people, you won’t get either”
It’s a thought that popped into my head halfway through the campaign. I thought about how much this campaign would have tanked if I’d simply spent the last 5 years of my music career asking people for their money instead of asking people for their community. My personal opinion is that if you’re going into a gig for the paycheck instead of the passion, it won’t be fun. You can make money doing anything, really.

3. That email list is SO important
I’ve written several lengthy posts on the importance of having a newsletter sign-up sheet at each of your shows (and on your website). A newsletter is made up of people who have willingly signed up to be aware of what you’re up to.  Don’t take that for granted. My newsletter, was the single most important part of letting people know about the campaign. Here’s a really informative post: Getting People to Sign Up For Your Newsletter.

4. Your Kickstarter won’t raise money by itself
Don’t think that just because you set up a Kickstarter page, you’re automatically going to attract the funds. Nope! There is alot of groundwork that goes into have people committed and trusting enough to give you money. See Grassrootsy’s original Kickstarter Review for more on this.

5. Update, Update, Update
Second to my newsletter were Facebook and Twitter posts. In fact, I’m sure they all worked off of each other. Each time a donation came in, I would post a tweet or status update to let people know. This not only served as an update, but a reminder to others to consider donating. It also helped to prove that people are excited about the new album.

If you’ve used Kickstarter and have some ideas for readers, please post below in the comments section.

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