Well, the Underwater Sombrero Kickstarter funding drive has come and gone as of 0004 this morning and as you probably know, was not funded. We did however, reach 24 backers and $2852 of the $8000 project goal. We also learned a lot about what Kickstarter is, and what it is not.
You can read my blog post on Underwater Somberor titled Kickstopped! I won’t rehash it except to say that I won’t call the Kickstarter effort wasted because of the learning experience and the show of support, but all that came from within. Kickstarter was nothing but potentially very expensive web hosting.
One of the best things that came out of the effort is that the resolve of the project team has been reinforced not diminished. We’re going to get the photography done and we are going to get the book published. Period.
Moving forward, we’re going to continue to run our own funding drive through the Underwater Sombrero website. We’re already set up to handle payments through Paypal and we’re still offering the same incentives that we set up for the Kickstarter effort. We’ll just run things with our rules, our site, and no deadline. Several Kickstarter backers have already converted their pledge over to a direct contribution through our site, and I expect more as people get around to catching up on their emails.
We’d appreciate it if you’d refer friends and contacts to the funding drive as well:
We also deprecated the kickstarter.underwater…. URL we created, but we’ve redirected it to the new effort, just in case someone uses that old link by mistake. That way someone doesn’t get the idea that the effort is over, just in case.
Feel free to follow along as we navigate the “Underwater” course. It’s already been interesting and I’m sure that isn’t going to change anytime soon.
If you’ve been following along with things on Facebook, I’m sure you’ve seen all the buzz on our Underwater Sombrero project. If you actually missed it, be sure to check out the website and other supporting pages. We’ve got not only an actual domain but also a Facebook page and a Twitter Feed.
I’ve been busting my ass to get the word out about this project, and I have to admit I’m feeling a bit frustrated. We’re not permitted to buy email lists and there are very strict rules about SPAM so I’m pretty much limited to what I can send out to my contacts. This means that I have to count on my contacts to help spread the word too. Unfortunately that isn’t getting me very far either. Several friends and family have stepped up and made a share or two on Facebook and sent some emails, but beyond that, I’m not getting much help. Not that I don’t appreciate the help I’ve gotten so far, but I seem to be having trouble conveying a sense of urgency.
We’re also getting ZERO support from Kickstarter. The project dashboard shows where video views and pledges come from. So far, we’ve gotten nothing from Kickstarter. Despite the fact that they have staff picks, a Facebook page, Twitter and do projects of the day and projects of the week. An email to them asking about getting our project featured was answered with automatic boiler plate which pretty much just said “keep marketing to your contacts. Maybe we’ll notice you”.
Time is running out on the funding. At this moment, we are stalled at 17 backers and 32% of the $8000 goal we need to make this project happen. We have 12 days to go. There have been no new backers since the end of the pledge challenge four days ago. I feel like if we could get the project in front of enough people, we could make it happen, but I’m not sure how to get there from here. We’re offering nice incentives. At least I think we are. I haven’t gotten feedback to the contrary. Pledges can even start at a dollar. I know money is tight for people, but we haven’t gotten any pledges for low amounts and that surprises me too.
So… I’m feeling a bit frustrated. Got some ideas? I’d love to hear about them. Think you might be willing to back the project? Check out kickstarter.underwatersombrero.com. Thanks!