There are many stories out there waiting to be told, and some require resources up front to make them happen. Perhaps you need funds for transportation, want to pay people you interview for their time, or need to have a marketing budget up front. Crowdfunding campaigns can be an excellent way to produce high quality tours for a variety of purposes, as well as gauge market interest prior to production. The residents of Madrid, New Mexico, supported Storyteller Andrew Wice’s crowdfunding campaign because the tour promised to celebrate their own history. You can see his successful Voicemap Kickstarter Campaign here.
● Kickstarter, which is an all-or-nothing fundraiser, is ideal for singular projects which can offer future prizes like copies of the tour in exchange for money today. If you don’t reach your specified funding goals, the money will not be distributed. Kickstarter has the broadest audience, allowing you to access a pool of people you don’t personally know, but personally recruiting your patrons such as community members and friends is still highly recommended to ensure funding goals are reached. You’ll need to promise rewards of your choice to the people that back your cause, for instance immediate access to your tour in the app, t-shirts, signed copies of the script, or audio outtakes.
● GoFundMe is typically for causes, and the money raised is considered a donation, without any deadlines or goal limits. Personal causes, memoriam efforts, and community dedications are themes that resonate strongly on GoFundMe.
● IndieGogo has the most freedom to specify how you want to raise your funds, which can be all-or-nothing or incremental, and also promises rewards to project backers. Like GoFundMe, it is a smaller platform, so it is likely that donors will only be your friends, family, and personal network.
Crowdfunded tours can be produced as a purchasable tour that generates storyteller royalties, or alternatively crowdfunding campaigns can be done to pay sponsorship fees to keep the tour free for all users. Crowdfunding is great way to discover which tour ideas have a large fanbase, and can be an especially good option for engaging with the likes of communities, professional associations, schools, tourism centers, and artist guilds. VoiceMap will provide any needed support to your crowdfunding campaigns, as well as promote it through our social media channels.
Whichever crowdfunding you pursue, consider that campaign the first step in marketing your tour. If you can make those first contributors feel valuable and special, they will feel a connection and responsibility for the final tour, and will continue to spread the word even after the fundraising is done. This can be an excellent way to build a wide network of support for your tour.