Image Courtesy of Rose Wintergreen
Melbourne songstress and Pozible crowd-funding ambassador Rose Wintergreen explains what it’s really like to crowd-fund a new record
Suddenly, there seem to be people everywhere crowd-funding. I’ve just become one of those people. But we’re all still learning about it. I’m half-way through a 30 day crowd-funding campaign for my new record, and even though they’ve helped multitudes of people raise over $10 million in crowd-funding, even the directors of Pozible, an Australian crowd-funding platform, can’t be sure whether my campaign will succeed.
I have every confidence in my project, and I hope that my campaign will succeed, but the reality is that no one knows for sure what it is that makes a crowd-funding campaign work. This is so much more stressful than I could have ever expected.
What was I thinking?
So, why am I doing this instead of raising funds another way? (I’m actually doing a bit of both – with a total project budget of $20,000 to record, release, promote and tour the new record, I’m only trying to crowd-fund $8,000).
I didn’t want to repeat the experience of putting out my last EP (Warm Chocolate Heart, 2010), where I ended up in massive debt and having to work full time in a job I didn’t want to be doing to pay for it.
This time round, I was thinking, “I don’t want to just put out another record. I want to give my fans opportunities to be creative, to have fun and to get to know me better. I want this to be about us, not just me and my songs.”
Crowd-funding was a perfect way to do this. Everything’s in the one place, systems are already set up. If the demand was there and I reached the funding target, the project would be funded. If not, then I’d have to rethink the project and try something else.
What it’s like
It’s not all rainbows and kittens: of course, there’s a lot of effort involved in constant self-promotion. Particularly if, like me, you’re a naturally shy and self-sufficient type.
Asking people to share the project link feels awkward, but people keep surprising me by agreeing and doing it.
Every time I notice someone has pledged their support, it feels like Christmas! I do my best to reply straight away with a personal thank you.
Right now it’s the slowest part of the campaign – halfway through. The people I talked to before launching warned me that this is normal and that there will be a last-minute flurry of support just before the deadline.
What if I don’t make it?
If I don’t manage to meet the crowd-funding target by 27th May, I’ll be pretty disappointed. It will mean I can’t release and tour this new record the way I’d like to. But I’ll be able to find another way, somehow, even if it requires rescoping the project.
Ironically, the money’s not so important to me anymore. I’ve already got so much more out of this than I ever could have hoped. I’ve had over 100 people show me they believe in my music, and tell me they want more – by pledging their monetary support and/or by sharing the link to my crowd-funding campaign with their friends and family. It’s the most beautiful feeling.
Rose Wintergreen is a singer-songwriter (acoustic folk/pop – think Joanna Newsom, Sarah Blasko, Suzanne Vega), and a social media coach to creatives (musicians, writers, artists, photographers etc.). Based out of Melbourne, she believes everyone is born creative, is addicted to coffee and obsessed by dark chocolate.
Support Rose Wintergreen’s Pozible Campaign here: www.pozible.com/rosewintergreen