Q1. Tell us about your campaign…. your inspiration, goals, why it’s important to you!
I wanted to create a temporary exhibit showcasing art jewelry in NYC. It is a small but thriving community and it is under-represented in the city. I was searching for this place and eventually I realized I should try to create it. Since the community is so small I thought the perfect way to expand the audience would be to create a pop-up exhibit Salon. I was lucky enough to have a solid base of jewelry artists that were interested in participating and had faith that it would all come together successfully.
My goal was to create a professional and polished temporary gallery space, appropriate to showcase the art-jewelry pieces. I think partially it was a test to see if this was something I am interested in doing more of down the line, but also just to step out of my comfort zone. I am equally a part of a commercial jewelry world and the art jewelry world and I think these two do not need to be mutually exclusive. I wanted to bring them closer together and also try and connect with a larger audience. People who buy accessories and art jewelry love to connect with the designers/artists. Also the majority of people don't view jewelry as an art form so seeing it represented in that light created a new dialogue. It was equally an educational event as much as it was a promotional event.
We created a Facebook page. Each artist was responsible to blast and talk about the exhibit, thus the network grew from 7 different people belonging to 7 completely different circles. I also got sponsored from some of my previous employers and got donations based on some the connections within the art circle. Equally as much as the social media has an immediate impact on these types of events (fundraising, advertising etc) for me the essential part in my success (personally and in business) has been through face-to-face time. Connecting in 3D has made it possible to sustain and further build my relationships through the social media.
What worked was having a legitimate platform to raise the money. If I had just asked for people to give I don’t think it would have worked, but putting together a press packet and using IndieGoGo made it look more legitimate, professional and more thought through.
I honestly didn’t think that I would raise the money through the campaign. I have to say I knew the project would get done but I didn’t think crowdfunding would actually be a big part of it. I just wanted to exhaust all of my options so I know that I tried. Seeing first bits of money trickle in motivated me further and I was really humbled and grateful that people outside the immediately involved cared about what I was trying to do.
Clarify your idea! Immediately, identify people that would care to know about your project and reach out! Don’t put all your financial eggs into one basket. I worked an extra job, fundraised, asked for sponsorship and traded in order to see this come to life. Trading your expertise (product, whatever it may be) was 60% of the success with my project. The idea that I had something of value that I could trade to get information/things to see the Salon through was very empowering. Thank you IndieGoGo!