Recently I attended a Kickstarter event at the newly(ish) revamped Site Gallery. It was such a positive use of an evening that I want to share it with you all. The event was free and the subject was intriguing. As was the chance to look in the gallery which I haven’t visited since the renovations, and so I signed myself up upon first discovering the event.
The idea of doing a Kickstarter has been in the back of the front of my mind for some time now. There are several projects that I’d love to explore and think that the Kickstarter format would suit really well. I just haven’t chosen which one. Or when to do it. Or started to out a plan in place. This event seems perfect for the stage of thinking I was at.
Straight away the Kickstarter representative told us that the evening wasn’t a sales pitch. If it wasn’t then I’m not sure what it must have been exactly, either way I didn’t mind. Sell it to me!
And sell it to me they did!
For a start, I didn’t even realise that there was such a strong Kickstarter scene in the UK that it warranted a UK arm of the website. To then learn that Sheffield is one of the UK’s largest hubs of activity with regards to the kickstarter site was a revelation too. I guess I shouldn’t have been suprised. Knowing how much entrepreneurial skills, creativity and digital strengths lie in the city, but nonetheless I was.
Throughout the session we listened to local artists who had used the Kickstarter platform. It was valuable insight and brought the platform to life. It helped that one of the speakers was the ceramicist Meghan Downs whose story seems to resonate with me the most as her practise is so similar to my own. The free wine and food softened me up so I could start to begin dream of my kickstarter funded art.
The main thing I wanted to know was about how much traffic Kickstarter generated. I was pleasantly surprised to hear that 40% of donations come from within the site itself. It’s always hard to tell if you are just promoting each strand of activity to the same loyal supporters or if you are finding new ways to engage new audiences so it was positive to learn that Kickstarter seems to have the latter.
We learnt about average donations and a little insight into the mind of a Kickstarter backer. All good help for designing a campaign too.
What I took away from the session was the belief that Kickstarter could be the right thing for me and all that’s left is for me to pick the right project, plan the right campaign and take the plunge!