Did you know that 89% of IndieGoGo campaigns that reach their goal will overfund by 30% or more?
Or that 1/3 of IndieGoGo’s donors are international contributors from 70 countries?
These are just a few of the juicy tidbits I picked up listening to Carole Dean’s interview of IndieGoGo’s Marc Hoffstatter, Head of Film (@theoriginalhoff) on The Art of Film Funding on Blogtalkradio.
Partnered with Indiegogo, From The Heart Productions has helped independent filmmakers raise over $1 million for their films
From the Heart has a unique partnership with IndieGoGo. As a 501(c)3 non-profit, From The Heart provides filmmakers with fiscal sponsorship which allows donors to get tax deductions. Filmmakers also get flexible funding. That means they get paid even if they don’t reach their goal. As an Indiegogo partner, From The Heart has helped filmmakers raise over $1 million to date.
I was delighted to pick up these expert insights and master tips, and give you an overview of the road map they shared.
Build Your Film Contact Database: 90% of your crowd funding comes from your list and their friends. During pre-launch, leverage your database to create excitement and get commitments for 20% of your campaign goal from funders. Then have a plan to get your committed funders to donate in the first two days of your campaign. Reaching 20% of your goal in the first 72 hours will get you noticed beyond your list by IndieGoGo fans and create momentum to fund to 100% of your goal ahead of schedule.
Aim Low – Fund High: Marc and Carole recommend being conservative in selecting your
Marc Hofstatter – Head of Film at Indiegogo
goal to fund faster and stronger. Hitting that 20% in the first few days is crucial. It shows you’ve got support and creates momentum which attracts more donors. So, even if you want to fund your entire feature at once, it’s best to start by funding just part of it. Besides, 89% of the campaigns that hit their goal overfund by 30%.
Plan to Go Beyond Your Goal. Carole pointed out that many filmmakers reach their goal early and are at a loss as to what to do for the rest of the campaign. Marc suggested creating pre-planning stretch goals to keep the momentum going. For example, imagine telling your fans how stoked you are that you’ve reached 100% of your goal early and now you can do what you had only dreamed of…shoot that scene in 3D with another $2,000 (or whatever your first stretch goal is.) That early success is the juice keeping your fans engaged and your campaign exciting.
Don’t Forget The Pictures: Marc recommends that you make your Indiegogo campaign page a strong visual representation of who you are, what you are doing and your unique style and talent. It should not be a page filled with words. Potential donors must be visually drawn in by your campaign page. They want to see your style and get a taste of what your filmmaking will achieve with their help!
No Time for Trailers. Carole and Marc agree that at the start of a campaign a Pitch Video is more important than a trailer. You need to show donors why you are making the project and why it needs to get made. Don’t forget to have an “ask” and a call to action to ask them to donate. But even your pitch video MUST represent your filmmaking vision and style AND give them a reason to click ‘Donate NOW.’ Chances are, they aren’t coming back, so close them NOW.
My own two cents? Consider this – Make a pitch video with two endings: One for pre-launch promotion and the second for the campaign ask and close. Another key element on your campaign page is your team: who is on board with you and what are their roles? Your team inspires confidence in your ability to get the job done with their money, so let your funders know you have quality business and creative talent on board to finish the project.
Pre-planning is Critical: Marc suggests to plan what you are going to do to maintain momentum and excitement at 5, 10, 17, even 22 days into your campaign. Work out predefined benchmarks for stretch goals, pre-written social media content for both during and beyond your campaign, and new and exciting perks that stimulate new funders.
Out With the Old Perks. Plan to introduce exciting new perks during your campaign that stimulate funding. Some funders may prefer a credit over a premiere ticket so changing up the perks will attract new funders. Choosing smart perks like digital downloads and experiences are easier to fulfill and have less impact on your budget than a perk you have to pay for and ship.
Your Crew is Your Team. Mark recommends having a team on your campaign of at least four. 1- outreach to those organizations and individuals aligned with your project to get their support; 2- provide regular updates, responses and new perks on your campaign page; 3- email campaign management and response; and 4- social media content and interaction. Carole and Mark emphasize that you are marketing your film already at this early stage–building a fan base, and hopefully attracting the attention of sales agents, distributors and advocates so treat it that way.
Other key points covered:
Campaign sophistication will jump in the near future with the entry of major players into the crowdfunding arena as seen in the recent campaigns for Sharknado and Rooster Teeth—this is great for getting your project noticed now by serious film fans and funders.
Crowdfunding blogs and thought leaders are interested in your campaign and your project—so add PR outreach to your planning.
Your success at funding your campaign is directly proportionate to retaining creative control of your project. Crowdfunding averages 10% to 35% of a film’s total budget funding, with the balance from grants, equity financing, foreign sales agreements.
Crowdfunding is still relatively unknown and is poised for tremendous growth as market awareness explodes and the impact of recent Title II and Title III rulings make room for crowdfunding equity financing with both accredited and unaccredited investors.
The bottom line is that crowdfunding is far from maturity and is the best tool available for filmmakers to simultaneously get exposure for their talents while marketing and funding their projects.
From the Heart’s unique partnership with IndieGoGo gives you a powerful advantage: a flexible and continuous funding platform combined with decades of experience mentoring filmmakers. Take advantage of this priceless access to this winning combination now.
Here are some cool links I found researching this article that I’d like to share with you:
His information is fascinating. He shares how he learned to send visions of his thoughts to his teacher. From this, he went on to manifest a successful career as an artist as well as writing an important, well received book.
Does your film need funding? You need to see what you want. Ken says this is the first step in manifesting. Then, “move it from your head to your heart.” We communicate through our heart chakra.
Find this heart place to send your vision to the universe. Remember how special you feel when someone says something that makes your hand touch your heart? Tell me a great story, touch my heart, and I will open my pocketbook!
I think you should send your visions with emotions. I like my requests to have“urgency”. So I send them up with joy, happiness and gratitude. Emotions heighten manifestation.
Ken talks about children who manifest what they want. They see it, they say it, or point to it. and they become relentless in their request. They get what they want through focus, focus, focus. And so can you.
Once you start focusing on a vision things happen. In our Intentional Filmmaking Class, we focus on what we want by listing it and envisioning it as completed. We list what we want and send our intentions/visions as if they have happened. That seems to be essential. You have to believe you have it. You are living in it. It is. Once you step into the reality that “it is” you can “feel” it and “see it.” This clear vision is a key to manifesting.
Ken mentions list making. That’s what we do in our class. We make a list of what we want. Short and concise so that we can read it daily and these things become reality. Ken says that a friend of his who is an out of body person could see his list of things start to manifest on the other side. Then it comes into our reality. I don’t know about this. I just know that the “how” is not important. I know the vision and imaging that you have it is the key to manifesting.
Did you know that Rhonda Burns and her crew manifested their top selling film The Secret? by using The Secret? concepts? They manifested what they wanted. They saw this film opening all over the world at once.
At that time, there was no way to download a full film. That’s how much faith they had. They envisioned the outcome they wanted. While they were making the film it became possible to download a full feature and they achieved their vision.
Ken Elliott says that your biggest enemy is fear. You can overcome it by converting your worries to action items. Put them on your calendar. I find he is right. I keep a pen and paper and when thoughts come to me that could be a fear, I write an action note to solve the problem. For some reason the brain stops worrying. Then the next day, if it is still a worry you focus on it or you let it go.
Ken says to create a movie for the future first it in your mind. Close your eyes and imagine you are in your future. See the future and live it. Be on your couch in a lovely home sitting at the end of the day and seeing your film completed.
Use the heart now by sending feelings of love and gratitude while you see the completed film and discuss your success. He says you use one of the most powerful things in the universe: gratefulness. Be grateful that you have the finished film. Charge it with gratitude and love. See this movie once a day.
This manifesting is available to all of us. Thought is real, it can create we know this from quantum physics. Why not believe you can improve your life, create more joy, make a film and fulfill your heart’s desire? Even if for only 90 days, why not use your vision, lists, focus, lack of fear and most importantly faith to create your film?
Guest blog post by my brilliant friend, By Adrienne Gould
With the onset of instant communication, we live in interesting times. The wealth of information exposes more ways for people to expand their knowledge; people are willing today, more than ever before, to accept the role “thoughts” have in realizing a better future.
Many books published in recent years give credence to the power that positive thoughts, via the use of affirmations, are directly related to your lives circumstances.
Today, there is a new way of thinking, and with Carole Dean’s class on Intentions quickly approaching, I’d like to explain the differences between affirmations and declarations.
The difference between an affirmation and a declaration is slight, but in my mind, powerful. The definition of an affirmation is “a positive statement asserting that a goal you wish to achieve is already happening. I‘m not crazy about this because what it does is bring an automatic response to your mind that says, “This isn’t true.”
The definition of a declaration is “to state an official intention out loud that takes on a particular course of action“.
A declaration is not saying some-thing is true, it’s stating that we have an intention of doing or being something.
A declaration, by definition, is also official. It is a formal statement of energy into the universe and throughout your body.
Declare your intention aloud each morning and each evening. Additionally, if you do so while looking into a mirror, it will accelerate the process even more.
Now, I have to admit that when I first heard of this, I said, “No way, too hokey for me.” But, because I was broke at the time, I decided, “What the heck, I’ll do the hokey thing, I‘d rather be really hokey and really successful than really cool and really broke.”
After achieving the goals I’ve declared, it’s no surprise that I believe in declaring intentions.
* * * * *
Here are two ‘people habits’: Doing habits and Not-Doing habits. The way to change Not-Doing habits into Doing habits is to DO them. Reading will assist you, but it is a completely different world when you go from reading to doing.
Dr. Deepak Chopra says that “If you talk to people who work in aquariums, they will tell you that when fish are separated from each other in glass tanks with a transparent partition between, preventing the fish from moving to the other tank, and then you remove that partition, the fish still will not beable to go into the other tank. They have made a commitment in their body-mind and believe that’s as far as they can go.”
He says our sensory apparatus, like those fish in the aquarium, develops as a result of our initial sensory experiences and how we are taught to interpret them. We function with a nervous system that reinforces and interprets what happened to us. It’s called a premature cognitive commitment.
Then, we commit ourselves to cognitive realities which are a result of conceptual boundaries that we have structured in our own consciousness. And our nervous system reinforces these boundaries.
I run into this daily in consultations with filmmakers. When they need to raise money, I often suggest ideas that I know to be successful. Many will say, No, I had a horrible time with crowdfunding or I had a party and we barely covered the cost of the food. Once they tried something, their body-mind has made a premature cognitive commitment.
To change this is impossible in one phone call.
A New Kind of Class
So years ago, I created The Trailblazers Class. I asked filmmakers to drive an hour to Oxnard once a month for 6 months to spend from10AM to 4PM with me in my home with lunch served. We started with the foundation of the film, pitch, proposal and trailer and we spent a month on each of these before we moved into funding ideas.
We created a vision board together cutting pictures from magazines, listened to Chopra and his Way of the Wizard audio. We listened to Bruce Lipton tell us how to change our thinking, how we are creating our future with thoughts. We began to think of things as completed and realized we must send positive images and feelings when we thought about our firms and our future. So we created completed visions of the films in our minds and saw them as successful.
Was it successful? Upon research, one woman who was just starting to make a documentary now has a brilliant, completed film and is starting another one. One of the young men in the class has won many grants and is now teaching at NYFA. Another woman artist did a stupendous job with her documentary and wrote a second book with her photos and it is published.
That’s why I’ve now created the Intentional Filmmakers Class. It’s a nine month online course (no trips to Oxnard necessary) to help filmmakers remove blocks. It will have only a small group of filmmakers who will work together to discover these body- mind commitments and remove them. I want to help filmmakers accept and embrace new concepts for funding their films.
This is a business where the only constant is change. We must be able to adapt to new concepts and let go of old ones at the drop of a hat. We can do this through new information from scientists, doctors and investigators such as Deepak Chopra, Lynn McTaggart, Brian Green, Stuart Wilde and Michael Beckwith.
Miracles happen every day. I believe that we are all connected. I believe that we care for each other and we are here to support each other. We can create our future. Impossible? I don’t think so.
Movies do not get made without great intent. Especially the ones nominated for Academy Awards. 2013 best director Oscar nominee Behh Zietlin shot “Beasts of the Southern Wild” on a shoestring budget, with untrained child actors, in a dirty swamp. You aren’t able to do that without the will to get it done.
Intention is the greatest power we have as humans. It’s our will power; we can will things into being. How? We do this by our relentless belief in the outcome of our desire.
Haven’t you heard people say, “He willed it so” when talking about someone who achieved an incredible feat? We use this word without realizing its full potential. Each of us has this power. The question is how to use it to create our art.
Say it Out Loud
Once you find something that you are willing to achieve and know that you will have to put 1000% of your faith and full intention on the completion, say it out loud.
Then, ask yourself how you feel. Are you sick at your stomach? It’s too much? Lower your expectations. Do you feel confident? Then, go for it. Deepak Chopra says each cell is a living thinking organism. Believe me, your body will tell you if you can or can’t do that, stay away from the mind, listen to the body.
Once you have set an intention for what you believe you can achieve, then put it everywhere you spend time, on your computer, the visor of the car, inside your wallet, you want to see this and repeat it 3 times a day. This is a one line statement of your intention as if it is completed. Example, “My brilliant film is completed.” Now, what’s on your “to do” list for the day? Focus on it and expect the universe to help you.
Pay attention because the universe now believes that your film is finished and they have to catch up with you. You may be introduced to a D.P., pitch the film, perhaps they will come on board and work with you to get the funding or lend their name.
Fred Alan Wolf says that when you are daydreaming about the future, that there is a “handshake across time” that occurs and this vision may become a reality in the future. So expect things to happen to move your film forward.
Accept all invitations and go as if you film is funded. I want you to have that air of confidence about you. Let them know you are doing something really cool, if they want to get involved, please join me because I am doing this with or without you.
Something that’s Never Been Tried Before
I read treatments and review proposals for over 500 documentaries and films each year. Some apply for the Roy W. Dean Film Grant. Some apply for fiscal sponsorship through From The Heart Productions for indiegogo.com.
Many are fantastic, can’t miss stories that have you anticipating standing in line for a ticket. But, many of those do not get made due to doubts and fears the filmmaker has about the project getting produced and their ability to produce it.
Can filmmakers be taught to create intent? Well, I believe they can and I have intended it to be. I just created a class called Intentional Filmmaking. It combines mentoring in filmmaking along with teaching how to manifest to leverage your intent. A class like this has never been tried. But, I know, and my intent is, that it will work.
Filmmakers need to know that our intentions (thoughts) can create things on this physical plane. They need to intend goals that are possible. Not to get $1 million in 30 days. They need goals that they can honestly reach and set a timeline for achievement. When they have the will to attain that goal, they can’t be stopped.
About year ago Helen Hall applied for our Dean grant in NYC with her brilliant film, Pictures ofInfinity about the incredible inventor, Nikola Tesla.
She was a finalist in the grant and when she didn’t win I asked her if she would like to work with From the Heart as her fiscal sponsor and let us help her raise money. She agreed and we set to work on creating the trailer and improving the proposal. Helen was open to all suggestions and made changes and followed through after each consultation.
We gave her names of grants that I thought would fund her film and she applied to all of them. She had a matching grant for $30, 000 that was about to expire and we were both reviewing all grants available to get that money.
After months of hard work and only 5 days until her matching grant was expiring, the mail arrived on Dec 26 and there was a check from one of the places FTH suggested. A little known granting organization had sent her a check for $30,000.00. Can you imagine my excitement knowing that with her matching grant this meant $60,000.00 to her?
Here was her funding for the interviews with physicists, an even better trailer and much more! What a wonderful holiday gift for Helen.
See, it’s a test of faith, please never give up. Never stop believing. Just know it will come from wherever it is now.
Focus on doing the work and let the universe do their part. They will not let you down.
Many filmmakers might consider it a miracle if their film got nominated for an Oscar or Golden Globe or a Spirit Award. They might consider it a miracle if their film got made! Miracles can happen. But, creating miracles like this don’t just begin with a good story or a great director. Creating miracles starts with understanding the universal law of manifesting.
The age of miracles has not passed. We all have an immense power that allows us create. Creating miracles is identifying with the universal laws to create your future. This power is not outside you, it is inside. You are in charge.
You are eternal and infinite. The universal law for manifesting is impartial. It has no way of knowing what you want. It is pure energy and takes the thoughts you send out and returns them to you unemotionally and in the form you asked for.
I meditated on the films fiscally sponsored through From The Heart Productions and asked for abundance. I asked for hundreds of donations before the holidays. Right after my request, we received over 100 donations in a matter of days. However, they were mostly $10 and $20. So you see, I did not ask for LARGE donations for my filmmakers. It’s a learning process.
This law will give you what you believe in. If you think it won’t work or that you don’t deserve it, you are seriously limiting yourself. So, trust me when I say the beliefs you express as your thoughts and feelings are what you are sending to the universe. You need to think like you did when you were a kid, i.e., that you can do anything, your powers are limitless. Go back to your thinking before people began to say, “You can’t do that!”
We are not our bodies; we are spirit living in a body. We came to this earth as spirit. Remembering that is part of creating miracles. You came in with a goal and that goal is part of you. It may be as simple as learning to love you.
To manifest you need to be sending thoughts and feelings of the highest caliber about yourself. Always know that “you are the greatest.” Muhammad Ali tapped into this miracle manifestation on a daily basis. We can learn from him as we daily say to ourselves how great we are.
The power of the universal law is always with you. It will fulfill your thoughts and feelings.
The next step is look at the nature of your beliefs. You may have established belief about what can and cannot be done. You may believe that people can lift a certain weight and no more, run at a certain speed and no faster.
It is a matter of perception and belief. Your ability to work miracles is predicated on how easily and quickly you can move away from world belief patterns and step above them. You need to mentally leave where you are now and step into the unknown.
Imagine the universal law as a shipping clerk in a factory.
It gets your order and he sends out what you ask for, a request for a size 12 gets a size 12. This energy is there to send you what you ask for. Be aware that your thoughts and feelings are sending requests daily to the universal mind and it responds by delivering the same. You need to be sure of what you want and make a strong “ask” with your intentions clearly defined. The power is within you. Use it to manifest miracles daily.
A brilliant Australian author, Brendan Murphy, has cleverly compiled information for us about language. He says based on research that “human language seems to have emerged from the grammatical and syntactical structures within our very own DNA”
We know as artists that words are the most important part of our films, our written materials, and especially our “pitches.” Finding the right words to touch hearts, engage people to donate, and support our projects is paramount to their success.
What’s so important to me about this information is that it supports what we
“think” we know and assures us that we are correct in taking care to choose the right words to reach our audiences. If we are all coded with words then our job is to resonate with each other through these words. Words that create visions, feelings, and emotions bring our art to life in another human.
This means phrases like, “I hope to” or “I would like to” should be dropped for “I am making” and “I am creating…” Watching your words can improve your health and your finances.
Brendan goes on to say that “Because the structures of DNA base pairs and of language are so similar, we can alter our own genetics by simply using words and sentences as has been experimentally proven.” That means that by repeating each day sayings such as “I am truly blessed” can benefit you.
He continues with “This finally and scientifically explains why affirmations, autogenous training, hypnosis and the like can have such strong effects on humans and their bodies.”
Inspirational author Louise Hay recorded what she said when she was diagnosed with cancer. She found upon playback that she sounded very negative and changed her words and changed her health and she is still with us years later running Hay House. There are many such stories available on this subject. It’s up to us to experiment with this concept to improve our lives and create our art.
Consider saying dozens of times a day, “My art is funded,” “I am truly blessed.”
Keep your words full of love and respect for you and all you encounter. Remember that words are energy and if you send out good energy it will return to you tenfold.
Have you seen the video on indiegogo.com about Karen, the bus monitor that was being bullied? If you want money for your art I suggest you look at that video and take note of the emotions you feel while you are watching it. http://bit.ly/LSlE0X
I felt ashamed that people would treat other people like this.
I felt her hurt and I wanted to reach out to her.
I understood why they wanted to document this event and ask for money for Karen and I wanted to help. This is the first law of film funding, wanting to be part of it.
There was something in it for me. That’s the key issue here. “What’s in it for me?” This is always paramount in the contributor’s mind. To me, donating was a way to say I am sorry you were hurt and I want to help you.
This video came at the perfect time for all of us to see how much we care for each other. Karen raised over $680,000.00 and they wanted $5000.00.
That tells us there is an immense amount of money available. So, please keep this uppermost in your mind. There is abundance.
What’s different about Karen’s campaign than others? It had publicity.
It went viral. That video was everywhere at once. It is the true definition of “do it with others” which is the motto of crowd funding.
They sent that video to the right places or it found the right places and it has the elements needed to attract money.
The question is, “What can you do with your trailer to evoke emotion and need?”
And, how do you get it to go viral? Answer those and your film is funded.
“The individual, having free will, must consciously with full determination, make the demand, and it cannot fail to come forth into expression, no matter what it is so long as the individual holds an unwavering determinate consciousness.” — The “I AM” discourses by Saint Germain
I have seen this happen many times in the film world. People making films, that I would bet you could never be financed, not only get them funded but got them distributed and did a fantastic job of self-distribution. How is this possible?
That question is what prompted me to write the book, The Art of Manifesting. I was watching these filmmakers wondering what the secret is. I could see filmmakers with equal education, equal talent, all having lots of passion for their project wondering what makes one finish a successful film and the other go back to dental school?
It’s their belief. Their constant belief that the film is made because they know it and they believe it. Perhaps it is on another level and they just have to bring it into this dimension. They can see it from beginning to end, they know they have the right crew, that the music will be perfect, edit is superb and they know this when they are writing the proposal! This “constantly making the demand of the universe” works; I have seen it in many cases.
You can use this for various stages of production. Use it for crowd funding. I have seen two separate filmmakers call me with only a few days left on their deadlines and both needing about $5,000.00 more. Neither of them knew anyone that could donate so much money. I told them to see themselves hitting the goal. Let go and give it to the universe.
Both of them hit their goals with donations at the last minute! Don’t tell me this doesn’t work. Belief is your most important asset.
Talented people have many ideas for projects. Take the time to feel into them one by one to know which one the universe wants you to make at this time. I have seen films delayed for years only to find the right time and zoom to completion like they were on the Indianapolis speedway. So, is this the time for the project? Ask yourself, which one can I make now?
Take a walk without your cell phone so you can get into the universal consciousness. Ask which film to make now, focus and listen to answers. Once you know the film then begin to visualize it from beginning to end. You must know what you want. You need to send up a completed film as a bundle to get heaven to move things around and bring you what you need.
From this day on, your belief becomes your most important asset. Never doubt. Someone else has trouble getting funding, that’s not your world. You are set to fund and finish your film. Please keep believing your film is finished. Know in your heart it is funded by the universe.
Belief in your ability and belief in your film is your ace in the hole. Make your demand on heaven with “full determination and it cannot fail to come forth into expression.”
For followers of my blog, email me for a free download of the CD of The Art of Manifesting with an effective manifesting meditation for you.