Page updated 3/1/2016
Band Crowdfunding | Musician Crowdfunding Ideas
How to raise funds from fans for a music release or project? The rise of music sharing and music piracy has really shrunk profits for many musicians on the product side of the business. While bands can still make most of their money on touring and merchandise at gigs, the profits from music releases is just not as lucrative as it used to be. This being the case many musicians still want to make music and be creative and have a music release to sell at gigs. Many bands and musicians need to resort to other avenues to raise money for upcoming music project releases.
One way to do this is through crowdfunding or fan funding of a CD, DVD, album, or music project. There are a number of ways to do this using some cool websites on the internet which we will list below. Even more established bands like Slash, Sevendust, 311, Presidents of the USA, and Cold have used crowdfunding techniques to fund new projects. Slash recently used pledgemusic to help fund a recent horror movie soundtrack for 'Nothing Left to Fear".
Most of these sites charge fees for processing and may take a percentage off the top. Please check with the company for pricing details. Typically a band would need to sign up with a crowdfunding platform and get approved. Sign up information may include crowdfunding dollar amount, contact information, what your releasing (i.e. CD, DVD, Video, MP3), and fan base information (i.e. newsletter info, Facebook 'Likes', Twitter 'Followers'). Once the project is approved, the band may offer products or services to fans upon completion of the musical venture. Prior to completion of the music project, fans have an opportunity to contribute to the project for whatever products and services you designate. Some of these sites may also offer ways for you to share donations with charities as well.
Listed above are just some basic crowdfunding ideas. If you already have a great fan base, be creative and think of items and services that your fans would really appreciate. Your fans that are willing to donate their hard earned money really need to feel like their a part of the project. It's a great idea to offer realistic quantities and prices on signed items, as you don't want to overburden the band with to many signings. Bands should post a tentative release date for the material so fans have a time table for delivery of their music product. You may be surprised how many of your fans may donate money to your music venture. The more established the band, the more donations they may receive. Promote the project often on social media, band newsletters, and band websites.
One word of caution, some fans may get upset that you are asking for donations for a project. It's best to just be honest with them and let them know this is being done for the fans and that you appreciate the help. It may be a good idea to promote the projects at live shows as well. Have one of your band members keep track of live show donations from fans. Try a crowdfunding tip bucket at gigs and promote the music project on stage in between sets. Fans will appreciate the opportunity to help a band with a new CD or DVD project.