Indie Band Uses IgnitionDeck For Crowdfunding Without The Middleman

Screen Shot 2012-08-24 at 12.52.48 AMLike many artists nowadays, Los Angeles-based indie folk
rock band A House For Lions is calling upon the help of their fans to help fund
the production of their new album, only they are not going through Kickstarter,
Pledge Music or RocketHub. Instead, the band has opted for the new WordPress
crowdfunding plugin IgnitionDeck, which allows users to have a hands-on role in
every aspect of their campaign while keeping all of the funds raised
and not having to meet a goal to keep the dollars collected.

IgnitionDeck is a DIY crowdfunding platform for WordPress
that installs as a plugin and allows bands to raise money without the “restrictions”
of other platforms. A common issue that many see with Kickstarter (and others) is
that if your campaign fails to raise, you end up with nothing – despite working
to create a video (if they're smart), designing the campaign, and driving traffic to the crowfunding
site itself. The layout and functionality of the IgnitionDeck plugin is very
much standard crowdfunding and includes all the usual items fans expect to see
including a video, a written description of the campaign, and tiered pledge
rewards. Payments are made through PayPal.

A House For Lions is one of the first groups to launch a
project using the IgnitionDeck plugin and are hoping to utilize it to raise the
$12,000 they need by September 22, which will cover producer and studio fees. The
band pledges to donate 10% of all money raised post-funding to MusiCares, a
charity that provides critical assistance for members of the music community
during times of need.

Check out A House For Lions' IgnitionDeck campaign here.

Hisham Dahud is a Senior Analyst for Hypebot.com. Additionally, he is the head of Business Development for Fame House and an independent musician. Follow him on Twitter: @HishamDahud\

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  1. “common issue that many see with Kickstarter (and others) is that if your campaign fails to raise, you end up with nothing”
    Actually that’s mostly just Kickstarter and PledgeMusic. IndieGoGo gives you a choice of campaigns and most people go with taking what they get whether it meets the pledge or not.
    Sounds like it might be a perception problem given that most people seem to think Kickstarter when they think crowdfunding.

  2. Not sure where you are coming from Clyde, but the article clearly mentions RocketHub who I used because they offered me the ability to keep the funds I raised…you are right, there is a perception problem.

  3. From a consumer perspective, the Kickstarter ‘hit your goal or get nothing’ model offers a greater guarantee that, providing the project has been costed accurately, a product will result at some point after the campaign ends. In the event that the campaign doesn’t raise the right amount to fund the project fully, as a consumer I would much rather a band not receive my pledge money than for me to lose my money to an underfunded project that may never raise the amount necessary to produce the product I was willing to fund; as an artist I would feel uneasy about taking a sum of money from my fans that I know isn’t enough to give them the product I pitched to them and excited them enough to want to support the project. It’s much easier to manage the expectations of fans in the event of a Kickstarter campaign failure than it is to take their money and potentially leave them out of pocket because you weren’t able to secure additional funding from other sources.

  4. Where I’m coming from:
    Just trying to figure out what’s happening with crowdfunding music.
    Hisham postulates that people are interested in this plugin because they don’t want to use an all-or-nothing solution. That’s the part I quote.
    Actually I think people are likely to be interested in this plugin cause they don’t want to give up the hefty percentage that platforms take.
    Perhaps they want ownership of their campaign on their own domain though I think that may sometimes be a mistake especially for newcomers.
    If you mean why didn’t I mention RocketHub, well, there are a bunch of these sites though RocketHub would be the next one in line in terms of awareness. But there are a lot more.
    IndieGoGo is probably the third most used for music so that’s why I mentioned it. Are you really hung up on which ones I mentioned? That seems odd.

  5. The all-or-nothing aspect is an interesting one. I guess it depends on how much you’re asking for and why.
    It also depends on what you’re giving as rewards.
    If you can still do your art on a lower budget and not give people a lesser product, I don’t have a problem with that.
    Also, some people will then find the money elsewhere rather than quit. They’ll make it happen like they would have without crowdfunding.
    It’s an interesting puzzle.

  6. Actually I see what you mean about managing expectations from a failed Kickstarter campaign vs trying to make something happen that you don’t have the funding to accomplish properly.

  7. Why I like this option is that I have more control over the campaign. I also like not paying the near 10% to the platform. In the end my project will probably get lost in the platforms site. Therefore I am going to have to promote it and get people there. I will have to pull from friends,family and fans. If I am doing all the work then why am I paying a percentage to the platform for merely hosting my project. Those who donate at anytime on any platform will have to trust that the project will ever reach fruition. I know of many who have invested in a project who have never received their reward nor did they see the project reach fruition. Therefore this app to me is no different then placing it up on some site and seeing what happens.

  8. I ran a successful Kickstarter campaign:
    I found the all-or-nothing model – high fees notwithstanding – to be a good balance between my need to raise capital and the need of potential donors to, as much as is possible, not get caught with their pants down. By only releasing funds to projects which have met or exceeded their goal, Kickstarter et al are achieving a number of goals:
    1. Ensuring that the project has a baseline level of support
    2. Checking the validity of the project owners’ assumptions
    3. Encouraging donations by eliminating the fear of being the only one to donate
    It also says that the project owner is willing to make the bet that their project is worth X amount. Saying “we’ll take whatever you give us” is less appealing to a potential donor than “we won’t take anything unless we meet our goal.” There is, of course, no guarantee that a finished product of any discernible quality will be delivered, nor that the gifts will be delivered, but that is a problem with any crowdfunding scenario.
    Everyone is right about the perception “problem.” Kickstarter had first-mover advantage and is the most recognizable brand with the best name. It is also where most people will go to first when looking for projects to fund; your own personal website, not so much. So to say a project owner is doing “all the work” and is getting nothing in return for using Kickstarter is disingenuous. They have a stable, well-developed and trusted platform with most of the market share and what is, in my opinion, the most fair funding scheme. None of that is true for a WordPress plugin on your website.
    If you already have a large fan base, on the other hand, then doing it on your own site might make more sense since you’ve already established trust with them and can count on them to at least watch your pitch video. If you’re a small potatoes band looking to avoid the 10% deduction from whatever relatively tiny sum you’re looking to raise, you’re likely to fall flat. It’s why the models pioneered by Radiohead, Trent Reznor and Louis CK don’t work for regular people.

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