Kickstarter Helped Raise Nearly $100 Million In 2011... But There Are No New Business Models?

from the just-saying... dept

For years, we've been hearing how the new business models we talk about aren't really "big enough" or that they're just "exceptions" to the rule. Yet, every year we see more and more success stories involving those kinds of business models. Kickstarter, for example, has been quite successful building a platform that empowers exactly the kinds of business models we've described for nearly a decade -- and it has found tremendous success doing so. It just posted some stats for 2011, showing that just under $100 million was pledged into projects this year (with approximately $84 million going into projects that were actually funded).

Perhaps most interesting of all? The two areas of the entertainment industry where we repeatedly hear the loudest cries of "there are no new business models!" -- movies and music -- were the two largest areas on Kickstarter. An impressive $32,473,790.40 was pledged for films and video -- leading to 3,284 successful projects, involving 308,541 backers. For music, it was $19,801,685.21 pledged for 3,653 successful projects, involving 260,178 backers. The 2011 numbers roughly tripled the 2010 numbers, so this kind of thing is clearly growing quickly. And, remember, Kickstarter is just one company in this space, which has multiple other companies -- such as IndieGogo and PledgeMusic -- offering similar platforms.

And yet, we're told that there's no way to make money and that fans just want stuff for free? Perhaps it's time to rethink some of those assumptions...

But the really key thing here is exactly what we've said all along: new business models develop. They always do. And part of allowing those new business models to develop is letting new startups, services, platforms and tools develop to meet the needs of the market. Kickstarter clearly meets a need. Things like SOPA and PIPA make it more difficult to start such a company or build such a platform these days (which is why both Kickstarter and IndieGogo have come out strongly against these bills). Let these new services live, and watch new business models succeed (and with them, all sorts of artists and creators).

Filed Under: crowdfunding, economics, independent artists, new business models, opportunity
Companies: indiegogo, kickstarter


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  1. identicon
    John Doe, 12 Jan 2012 @ 9:53am

    I wish I had something to kickstart

    I love kickstarter. I have never pledged to it and haven't even looked at it much, but I love that people are funding people.

    I do wonder if some of it is a fool and his money though. For example, there are some guys who far, far exceeded their funding request to create parachute fabric hammocks. There are already lots of hammock makers and most of them sell for half the price these guys are selling for. They even imitate the color patterns of the existing manufacturers. If there was some new innovation here, I could see why they were so successful, but there isn't except maybe their tie to charity. But as long as you get what you pay for and you are happy with the price and the product then to each their own.

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