It’s been a few days since the eleventh-hour successful end of the Dominique Pamplemousse Indiegogo campaign, and I’m just barely starting to recover from it. Don’t get me wrong: I’m thrilled beyond measure that the project got funded (and once again, everyone, THANK YOU!) but still feeling a bit dizzy from getting off the proverbial emotional rollercoaster, if you get what I’m saying. I’m not sure most people realise how much work it is to run a crowdfunding campaign, but suffice to say… it is hard.
I knew this coming in, of course. I’d successfully crowdfunded a project before, but that was back in 2009, when the whole concept was new and I knew I didn’t have much of a chance of raising anything other than a little bit of spare cash to cover a few expenses. This, on the other hand? To call it a step up would be a bit of an understatement.
My friend Corvus refers to crowdfunding as “the most affordable and brutally efficient marketing tool [he's] ever used”, and I agree with him. It’s marketing boot camp. Crowdfunding has become more familiar to the general public in the past year, yet some people persist in having this misconception that all you do is throw up a project page and video and the money just flows right in. That, I tell you, definitely won’t work on its own.  You have to get yourself out there and hustle. Which, I will reiterate, is hard.
It’s hard when your temperament naturally gravitates towards introversion, and you would much, much rather be spending your time doing actual creative work. It’s harder still when you’re dealing with being socialised as female. You know all that stuff they say about how women don’t negotiate pay raises, how assertiveness is seen as a more negative trait than in men? The same thing applies here. Oh yeah, and make sure you don’t get too popular, or else you run the risk of attracting trolling and abuse. See also Anita Sarkeesian. (Thankfully, it didn’t get anywhere near that bad for me.)
In the end, though, the hard work paid off, as I did get funded, but it was still nail-biting uncertainty until the last day. There were so many times I second-guessed myself, telling myself I should’ve set my funding goal lower, should’ve picked flexible funding instead of fixed, should’ve used Kickstarter instead of the less familiar Indiegogo,  etc. But the huge surge came at the very end, and the “crowd” part of crowdfunding stepped up in a big way to push me right to the finish line and then some. It was amazing. I’m still awestruck that it actually happened.
It’s been said before, but I’ll say it again: in crowdfunding, it’s way more about the crowd than it is about the funding. The funding is important because we all need to eat, sure, but finding your people and creating a community… that’s what will get you places. That’s what this is all about. It’s the way of the future. Direct relationships between artists and their audiences. It’s true that not everyone wants to see a stop motion musical videogame, but as I kept repeating to myself throughout, the right people will. And you know what? They do. You do. Again, thank you.
So, it’s now time to get to finishing the game, which I’m super excited about — really, you have no idea. I will definitely be writing more behind-the-scenes updates throughout the course of development, to keep you all posted on my progress, and I hope you enjoy them — and the game, when it’s finally done.