Indiegogo is an open platform, where all ideas get an equal shot at success. In an industry as competitive and lucrative as the film industry, it’s tough to get noticed as an indie filmmaker unless you have the funds and community to support your idea. More and more independent filmmakers are turning to crowdfunding as an option to help raise money for feature-length and short films, documentaries, TV show pilots, web series and transmedia and VR projects. To help aspiring filmmakers achieve their dreams, we analyzed over 22,000 film campaigns to find best practices and insights. Here are 8 key film crowdfunding stats you need to know.
1. 30 day campaigns works best
Of all the film campaigns that met their goals, 32.71% of them ran their campaigns for 30-39 days, while only 13.87% of successful campaigns ran for 60 days. In contrast, the most popular amount of time for successful tech crowdfunding projects is at least 60 days. When setting your duration, think about how much time and resources you can to allocate to your campaign. Crowdfunding requires a lot of preparation and work before, during and after the campaign itself. Depending on you and your teammates’ capacity, you might consider starting with a 30 day campaign, then extending midway through if you find you need more time.
2. Keep your campaign page updated
On average, successful film campaigns post 5 updates. Updates can include anything from press mentions, milestones, new perks, celebrity endorsements, events, script completion – anything that you think your community would be interested in. After all, your backers are contributing their money to help bring your film to the screen, so naturally they’ll be interested in any updates you provide. Continually updating your campaign page is one of the best ways to keep your community and fans involved in the process.
3. Start strong, finish strong
For all 22,000 of these film campaigns, whether they met their goals or not, we found that 42.83% of all funds raised occurs within the first 3 days and last 3 days of the campaign. This truly demonstrates how important it is to adequately prepare for your campaign beforehand and to have a strong launch, and rallying your community at the end to finish strong. One good tactic to start strong is to have a soft launch of your campaign. A soft launch happens before your official launch date, involving getting only your closest set of supporters (friends, family, extended relatives, past backers) on board as the first contributors to your campaign. A few tactics to help close your campaign with a strong finish include final countdown perks and bundles, perk upgrades and creating a sense of urgency for potential contributors through messaging and marketing.
Similarly, this also demonstrates the importance of developing a mid-campaign strategy to maintain momentum between these two peaks. There are plenty of ways to keep your community engaged mid-campaign, including unveiling new perks, running referral contest and flash sales on perks that haven’t yet sold. Offering new, limited incentives throughout your entire campaign will help keep the momentum going.
4. Adding new perks
One unique aspect of film campaigns is that you have an enormous range of creativity for your perks. From signed movie posters to meet-and-greets to set visits, you have lots of ways to incentivize your backers to help you reach your goal. On average, successful film campaigns add 17 new perks after launch. As your ideas develop and you receive audience feedback, you can create new perks to give to your community more of what they want.
5. Include affordable perks
Sure, offering a few top dollar perks to tour your movie set or meet your celebrity lead will make a bigger impact on your overall goal, but it’s also important to include more affordable perks that give a lot of value at those lower levels. In fact, the most popular perk amount selected by contributors is $10 to $30
6. Work with a team
Film campaigners working with a team rather than individually raise 1.5 times more funds than those who campaign alone. The more people you have working on your crowdfunding campaign, the larger your potential network and reach. Furthermore, you’ll have more people to help divvy up the work so you can divide and conquer. When choosing team members, keep in mind that people who have different skillsets will be able to contribute in different ways and help strengthen your overall team as a whole.
7. Include a pitch video
You are raising money to create visual content of some sort, whether it’s a full-length narrative or documentary feature or a web series. The best way to convey your idea and message it to the crowdfunding world is through a pitch video. Film campaigns that include a video raise 3 times more funds than those without. Not only are videos an incredibly effective way of communicating, they are also highly engaging and give you incredible creative flexibility to showcase why you want to raise money for your idea.
8. Maximize your global reach
Did you know that Indiegogo is a global platform, reaching 224 countries and territories worldwide? This means that your campaign has the potential to reach millions of people worldwide, regardless of your own personal network. Keep that in mind when you are planning your marketing strategy; you never know – people on the other side of the world just might turn out to be the ideal target market for your film. The top 5 most generous countries in terms of contributing to film campaigns are the US, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia and Germany.
Now that you know these 8 crucial film crowdfunding stats, you’re ready to get started. Download our free Film Handbook.
Got an idea for a film you want to get on the big and small screen alike? Download the free Indiegogo Film Handbook to get started.