View Full Version : Focus on $1 donations - Good idea?

06-18-2013, 10:35 AM
Hi everyone.

I just launched the crowdfunding page of my upcoming indie short film YELENA: http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/yelena-a-suspence-short-film/x/3616951

Convincing people to contribute is not easy. I don't want to beg people to make a contribution. If people read the info on my Indiegogo page, they should be able to choose whether or not they find the project interesting enough to make a donation. However, you need to promote your page, otherwise you won't make money.

Isn't it a good idea then to focus on $1 donations while promoting? One dollar is nothing these days, so I figure that more people are willing to donate a dollar, then lets say 15, 50 or 100 dollars. If they read your crowdfunding page and they like it, then they might give more then $1. But a simple dollar might attract more people, no? Please tell me if you think I'm wrong.

Scorp Lake
06-29-2013, 07:35 PM
I think a platform that accepts 25 cent donations would be good for the Indian and Asian markets. Mass micro is the way forward.

If you want any feedback on the vid: I thought the colors and shooting in your film were good, but the editing was a little stuttered, and the shots didn't flow with the music.

Some shots were very atmospheric, but others didn't have much impact. I'd cut that 2 mins down to 60 seconds.

We all have long careers ahead, so good luck.

Salvador Briggman
07-02-2013, 11:13 AM
It's definitely an interesting idea. I guess it depends how you are using the campaign- a market test for the product, to get supporters who might not want the product, but like you or your cause, etc.

08-04-2014, 02:40 AM
Do you know of any campaign that made success with this concept? It kinda seems as a good idea?

08-05-2014, 10:32 PM
I'm OK with the $1 pledges, but I usually would rather get a reward of some sort. I've only done one $1 pledge, because I wanted to follow a web series but wasn't sure I wanted to commit anything to do it yet. I think it's a good idea to have $1 pledges, through, because they can add up among people who don't have much money but want to support your ideas.

However, I don't like when there's a $1 level and then a big jump to $30 or something. I think it's important to have $5, $10, $15, not just to raise money but to be affordable to people who want to back multiple people but don't have a lot of disposable income and don't need big rewards.

08-07-2014, 04:12 PM
Make it $2 and you'll probably double the amount made. If people are really willing to donate $1 to support you, chances are they do $2. Give it a try.

08-07-2014, 05:11 PM
I included a $1 pledge in my pledge levels, but without much of a reward beyond a thank you. That said, I owe one person a thank you. :)

Ed Blaze
08-07-2014, 06:39 PM
Crowdfunding platform like kickstarter and indiegogo - they don't help you promote anything unless you have a mass traffic to your campaign then they might consider - so I think cross promotion is a great idea, to bring traffic to your campaign - the people who are running their own campaign too

Just Krystal
08-09-2014, 12:13 AM
I like that idea


08-09-2014, 09:16 PM
$1 pledges is the focus of my Youtube series!

Check it out: http://www.dollarpledgeclub.com

08-10-2014, 06:49 AM
So do you think ''thank you'' would be enough as a reward for $1?

08-11-2014, 07:08 PM
Based on my very limited experience, I'd tend to say yes and no. Looking at successful campaigns, they have a lot of $1 funders, but they also have several "high rollers". The great thing about low-level perks, in my mind, is that anyone who buys in is obviously invested in the idea and likely to share.

Even though $1 is a small amount, if those are the only contributions you get you're going to have to sell thousands on your idea.

08-12-2014, 11:04 AM
A $1 donation is good. People don't expect a return for $1. I've had people ask what the get back for investing $25. When you tell them it's a donation they can turn up their nose thinking you were going to give them 20 percent of your profits.

08-12-2014, 12:37 PM
A $1 donation is good. People don't expect a return for $1. I've had people ask what the get back for investing $25. When you tell them it's a donation they can turn up their nose thinking you were going to give them 20 percent of your profits.

This is a good point. When you don't have a lot of different perks, it might make sense to focus on smaller donations.

Kiss Péter
08-15-2014, 05:18 PM
6 of the almost 600 backers of our campaign chipped in $2 for a thank you. Not much, but we are grateful for that.

08-15-2014, 09:14 PM
Based on my very limited experience, I'd tend to say yes and no. Looking at successful campaigns, they have a lot of $1 funders, but they also have several "high rollers". The great thing about low-level perks, in my mind, is that anyone who buys in is obviously invested in the idea and likely to share.

Even though $1 is a small amount, if those are the only contributions you get you're going to have to sell thousands on your idea.

I agree with you. For such a campaign to work, you really need to have a lot of contacts and networks. Once the 1$ donations get rolling, more people will be tempted to donate larger sums. But if you need a lot of money in a short amount of time, unless you have a solid cause, it will be a troublesome task.

08-16-2014, 08:13 AM
Yes, $1 donation is a very good idea as many people will think that let us donate this is not a big amount and this could add up some dollars easily.

08-16-2014, 05:18 PM
I think people like to get something, you know the perks, that why the 1$ pledges arent that attractive. IF you really like a project you are also likely to donate more. Therefore i think you should forcus on rewards.

08-16-2014, 06:31 PM
I'm presently working on my first crow funding project and I initially thought that trying to get as many $1 donations as I could was the way to go. However, after asking my donors what they thought, I was told by most that the reason they donated $5 or more was because the rewards they would receive with the larger donation. Unless you're planning on offering a reward for every $1 donation (and more than a "thank you") I personally would focus on donations of larger amounts. Not many people want to give something (money in this case) without receiving something that is of equal or greater value to them in return.

08-17-2014, 06:06 PM
Has anyone else had experiences with $1 pledges?

08-18-2014, 03:29 PM
It seems that one dollar donations would work if you have already built up a substantial following. For example, if you had a couple hundred or thousand people already following your project on twitter, you might be able to make the one or two dollar donation the focus of your campaign. With less initial followers it seems that the one dollar donations wouldn't work as well.

08-20-2014, 12:37 AM
Yes, going after the long tail as a first resort might be risky.

Strange Biology
08-20-2014, 11:18 PM
I don't know, I have that option but I wouldn't count on it to get me anywhere. Think about how hard it is to get someone to contribute at all. Most people don't want to give any money, but once they've got their wallet open, why not $15? That's just like the price of a Pina Colada. I think it's 100 times harder to get 15 people to contribute anything than it is to get one person to give $15.

Dremico Evans
08-21-2014, 04:37 AM
I guess you really do need a following before doing these things. I just thought if people liked your stuff that they might donate to you. I still kind of think that's true. People get lucky all of the time though.;)

08-21-2014, 12:33 PM
For $1 chances are the people aren't getting anything in return and really, are you? You have to have a lot of $1 pledges to add up to anything substantial and often times it comes off looking greedy.

Dremico Evans
08-21-2014, 07:53 PM
Carl You made some good points. In some cases it's not about if you want to donate or not it's if you can donate.

If I had $1000 total, in all of my money accounts then I could afford to donate at least ten dollars. $100- $1 etc... However let's say someone had $8 in their account even donating $1 is a big deal. I believe people would donate more, to many different causes, if they had the money to do so. In the USA right now finances aren't the best. Lucky donations can come from around the world. This is just my opinion.

08-25-2014, 10:50 PM
I agree. I'd donate $2 and not expect anything in return.

Sana Musa Farooqi
08-26-2014, 03:38 PM
This idea doesn't work...its better to target more potential funders or backers as well

08-27-2014, 11:04 AM
I hope you are successful with your campaign. It is hard to get people to help your campaign you just have to know how to promote/advertise.

Pace Abbott
08-27-2014, 09:13 PM
I think giving multiple options for $1 is great but i would also make sure to include bigger and better ones as well. People who like it a lot arent afraid to donate more money however if its kind of a hey thats cool i could donate a buck ... but then its not worth the effort to pay for it.

08-31-2014, 05:46 PM
I think $1 is a great way to move forward, though you have to maximize traffic to your campaign otherwise those micro donations won't mean much.

Taili Irysa
09-02-2014, 09:27 PM
Mass micro transactions add up faster sometimes!

09-03-2014, 02:08 AM
$1 or 25 cent donation doesn't matter. People just don't help other people.

Nimish Kasundra
09-11-2014, 06:07 AM
I think $1 can help you if your funding goal is not more than $5000.

09-11-2014, 03:08 PM
It's a big thing and popular on Reddit, so I've seen. I do have a $1 level on my campaign but perhaps I haven't focused on it enough; a high volume of smaller donations would do better for me than a few big ones, if you think about economies of scale. But my most popular level has been in the range between $20 and $50. Amazingly, people have shrugged off the $5 ebook in favour of a $20 paperback, or a $50 package including an autographed print and event admission. The nature of the campaign may have a great deal to do with whether $1 will work best. Again, I never really made that level my focus.

Space Boat Studios
09-11-2014, 03:37 PM
We resigned from one euro perk due to paypal costs of each transaction and account costs that depend on number of transactions...

John Sedawie
09-11-2014, 04:53 PM
Interesting concept. Any updates on how it's going? Depending on how much you're looking to raise, you would need quite a large audience.

Damien White
09-12-2014, 07:58 PM
From my research it seems that $1 tiers aren't very effective. Start with $5. Plus who wants to climb one buck at a time?

Smookiekins Rab
09-15-2014, 05:59 AM
i love the idea.

09-26-2014, 11:52 AM
If nothing else, it lets people who are mildly interested but don't want to fully commit back your project and see the private updates. Every backer is a chance to turn them into a larger backer! :)

09-26-2014, 08:22 PM
Well it is certainly worth a try..might take a while to reach your goal but slow and steady wins the race....best of luck...

09-30-2014, 10:23 AM
We actually sell game for $1, and it works, but on one condition: You need to have MASSIVE traffic on your website, and it must probably count in hundreds thousands - then it works. We sold it once in package through Humble store, and people could buy package with 10 games for as little as $1, and believe me, I didn't earned more in my life than in this week... but there was MASSIVE traffic on their site, plus ofer was really outrageous. Regularly it's on iTunes.

In campaign I'd try to cover all - from $1 perks to $1000 perks. That's how you should have 100% coverage. But I know it from theory, I'm not that successful for myself. But, high price items also do the job - you have to sell less, but it looks like selling high price item isn't harder that selling low price item.

Try to google about marketing funnel, maybe you'll find it helpful.

10-24-2014, 01:17 AM
I think $1 or $2 is a great idea but it will work for a specific project. If it's Art or a project that, for example, makes a world a better place - then i'd be ready to chip in a little amount without wanting anything in return. If it's more like a biz idea - then normally people want a return on their bucks.
One more perspective, someone wouldn't want to deal with a whole payment procedure just becoz of one or two bucks that they wanted to donate. But for a bigger amount donation I'd go thru a payment process pain.

11-08-2014, 10:45 PM
I think $1 pledges will do a great job of getting the backer count up and spreading the word. I agree - it's a great concept for getting attention.

I still think it's good to have some more expensive options that hopefully have decent profit margins. In short, a good mix is what I feel works well.

11-15-2014, 03:05 PM
Good for you...many people underestimate the $1 donation. Here in London, the government are considering putting collection containers in the Underground stations; people can drop in pennies etc...they estimate that they could collect fifteen million Pounds in a year

11-27-2014, 11:26 AM
Depends what your campaing is about but in most cases the 1$ reward tiers aren't that helpful and makes you campaign look cheap.

12-06-2014, 03:56 PM
Interesting discussion.

01-02-2015, 11:53 AM
It's OK to have $1 pledge, but don't expect too much.

Amy Thompson
01-02-2015, 01:45 PM
I think it's a great idea. Some money is better then no money.

01-10-2015, 08:10 AM
giving something for $1, starting from there is a fine idea I guess. I mean more than a "thank you". Instead of "hey thanks", giving your backer something like I don`t know if you make a music album a song of your choice free? or if you make a movie, put his/her name in end credits? why not? maybe you will have 10k of backers and you can tell me that you cannot put all of those names. No, you can. Just prepare a text document about it and put those names there. It could mean a lot to a backer (like me).

just something. then go with 2-3 USD (or EUR).. and then present them (to me, hey I would be your backer, too, why not) some other big options. some other perks. like for 10 USD this. then for 20 that.

it`s to me like "shopping".. you know if you shop already in the supermarket after you buy the milk you could buy that chocolate, which was not your aim when you enter into that supermarket. and maybe those gums when you come to the cashier to pay.

the important thing is making the backer decide to get his wallet from his pocket. once it`s out you may want a bit more. and give me (them) some choices like large potato chips are 5,5 USD but XL is 6,5 and mega size is 7,5.. which would you like to buy?

all of these are common sense and not rocket science for sure but I just would like to share my ideas about 1 USD pledges. yes they are almost a must to me but a dry thank you doesn`t make me reach my fat geld purse (purse? why not)

01-10-2015, 12:47 PM
I'm trying to go with the $2 as well. I'll see how it goes.

01-12-2015, 02:55 PM
interesting idea. I campaign has a base pledge of $5, but we may think about lowering it after reading this.