Current Crowdfunding Landscape

It’s been about three years since I was last involved with a crowdfunding campaign, and I’m again considering it as a route for launching a product and brand later this year. How has the crowdfunding landscape changed (or possibly not changed) over that time? Overall I feel that I see less coverage especially of wildly successful, multi-million dollar campaigns. That is, I see less widespread enthusiasm for crowdfunding in general (at least when it comes to product design.) I chalk that up to some high-profile development failures of well-funded projects (ahem…looking at you ultimate cooler.) This could, however, just be a wane in personal interest on my part. How would the community describe the general attitude toward and exposure of product design crowdfunding these days?

Pre-seeded marketing (e.g. blog posts, pre-campaign reviews, etc.) was already pretty crucial a few years ago, but I feel like I’m seeing much more paid marketing these days. I’m also seeing more marketing pushes during the middle of campaigns that look and act more or less like regular ads, rather than those at the launch that tend to be more story-based. Have marketing tactics changed? Are any proven to be more or less effective? Is campaign marketing still front loaded or a little more metered out?

So what’s the prevailing wisdom? Is it any different than three years ago? All thoughts, advice, or general topics of debate are more than welcome. Thanks for your insights.

I’m not sure how effective they are, but for a bit there it seemed like there were several crowdfunding consulting firms with a “proven process” to market and promote.

Ya, looked into a few of those. The proven process is pretty simple. Pay a lot of money. Money to the firm, and money in advertising, platform fees, etc… Rough calculations were that you need to spend about $150,000 to raise $300,000. Not including any actual design, development samples, or general admin costs, not to mention video, photography content. Once your include those (varying by product and process) it was something like $250,000 in expenses to raise $300,000.

Not that that is necessarily bad. If crowdfunding is a proof of concept before getting bigger investment, or if you have a small business that doesn’t have a high MOQ or capital needs, it might make sense. But IMHO, the “raised $1M with nothing but a doodle and iPhone video” is a fantasy.


That doesn’t seem like a very good return on investment :slight_smile:

I noticed c77 have been doing these crowdfunding updates: Currently Crowdfunding: An Ergonomic Armrest, a New Halfbike, and More - Core77