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Insights we discovered when we scraped and analyzed all of Indiegogo’s campaigns (medium.com)
83 points by ejunprung 1429 days ago | hide | past | web | 35 comments | favorite

It is also worth noting that Indigogo has the option for projects to keep the money raised even if it falls below the goal (for a higher cut of the money IIRC). Not only would that alter revenue numbers, but I think it would also influence how projects set their initial goals. Wouldn't you be a little more conservative on your Kickstarter goal since it is an all or nothing situation?

Not necessarily. IndieGoGo offers two types of funding: flexible and fixed. Fixed is exactly like KS where you only get the money when you reach your goal. With flexible, you get whatever you raise but are charged different percentages based on whether you reached your goal or not. If you did, you're charged 4% but if you did not, you're charged 9%. Thus you're incentivized to be more conservative on IGG as well.

You basically rephrased exactly what OP said. He's arguing that the % spread isn't as strong an incentive to be conservative in the funding amount.

Hmm. I must have missed the part where he mentioned the higher cut when I first read his comment (or it has been edited since). I assumed he wasn't aware of the higher percentage.

Does your data allow comparisons at different points in time? In particular, is the gap widening or narrowing?

(A 6X differential isn't too surprising when there's a clear first-mover or early-mindshare-leader... but it also isn't insurmountable as long as the market is growing and fluid.)

Unfortunately, we didn't scrape any time information. Surprisingly enough, Indiegogo is actually the older crowdfunding platform, though I agree with you Kickstarter was certainly the early-mindshare-leader.

Judging from the live dollar amounts that we saw over time, Kickstarter is continuing to widen it's lead.

We put together some fun histograms from the raw data in Statwing. You can play around a bit more yourself.


Thanks OP for making the raw data available.

(Edit: Disclosure, I work at Statwing)


Tangentially on topic: I am surprised that Kickstarter doesn't have a way for members to sign-up for updates of various kinds. I am almost exclusively interested in technology projects. I would love to get daily emails featuring new tech projects. No such thing exists. I don't visit Kickstarter every day. What's ends-up happening is that I sometimes miss out on really interesting projects because I don't know they existed. Some of the most interesting ones I've discovered through HN and other sources but not KS.

I imagine they are missing out on a pile of revenue by not establishing a good connection with members.

The powers that be at KS seem more interested in pushing projects they personally like (artsy projects) instead of tailoring their recommendations to each user. As such I find their newsletter useless as I imagine a lot of people do.

Arts and Culture are part of their founding DNA and you can see how hard they are trying to retain the spirit of Kickstarter to fund projects that may not have clear commercial value by giving more face time to these projects.

When Kickstarter put in place restrictions on pre-sales and other types of projects (http://www.kickstarter.com/blog/kickstarter-is-not-a-store), they were primarily addressing the hardware/tech category that changed the core nature of what Kickstarter was meant for.

Usually with a platform you want to go with the flow. If the users use it in an unexpected manner - you learn from that and optimize for it. Instead they're fighting their users. It's admirable that they're sticking with their mission but it definitely leaves the door open for someone to leapfrog them.

They could even automatically figure out projects you'd be interested in based on data collected from other backers "people who backed this project also backed" as well as simply using categories you have backed in the past. This is something where I think they'd get quite a few people signed up to a daily or weekly email about new campaigns.

Just the other day I was complaining about this. As someone who tends to back tech and film projects, and lives in Seattle, a film project about the Seattle tech scene went totally under my radar until I had read about the tech company I work for being one of the main backers of it --just hours after the funding period had ended.

Kickstarter really is terrible for actually finding projects to fund. I've only ever found interesting projects through completely external media sources as well. This could be a major competitive advantage for IndieGogo if they were to tackle this problem. I'd be willing to get a targeted newsletter of interesting projects from them.

Indiegogo also charges the investors up front rather that only if the funding succeeds - I know this has prevented me from giving money in the past. It's annoying to deal with the fund/refund issue.

Nothing you have to do. Its all automatic

The reason I only back kickstarter projects is that I don't like that you pay inmidiatly with igg. Don't know if there is any data on funded projects that delivered or failed to deliver but my guess igg will do worse in this respect as well

I think it's important to realise that Indiegogo allows "raise money to send X to college/hospital” and other such campaigns. For hardware projects, Kickstarter also insists on a working prototype, which Indiegogo does not.

Is there any reason that the ultimate price for these services won't approach $0? They're not actually providing promotion, right? That seems like the only real value they could really provide.

They do promote. Many people browse the site, receive emails, etc. Kickstarter makes a point to put in the creator's dashboard a pie chart that shows how much their promotion has brought in vs. other means. In my experience their slice is between 25-50% (skewing smaller as projects are more popular).

I find out about 90% of these things from the kickstarter website or emails saying my friends invested. So I would say for the projects I funded, I would have never given them money if they weren't on kickstarter.

Well, then maybe it can work. Maybe they'll just lower their cut.

Hard to really evaluate the info without the time factor. KickStarter is massively popular, but I wonder how much of total haul is attributable to activity before IndieGoGo came along (I believe KS started first). It would have also been interesting to compare historical figures to activity in the past calendar year, overall trends (eg timeline to when KS got to 6X IGG) vs per categories, etc.

I think Kickstarter technically started first, but IndieGoGo actually saw it's first hit of popularity first. It was close enough that the two weren't really influencing each other.

As most inventions, it was separate individuals recognizing the semi-obvious.

Indiegogo started in 2008 and Kickstarter was launched in 2009. Also, we saw from the live dollar amounts that Kickstarter was quickly expanding it's lead.

Wow, interesting to learn that Indiegogo actually launched first. Kickstarter's bigger brand stamp made it seem otherwise.

Doesn't KickStarter screen all their campaigns? Does IndieGoGo do the same? If not that explains why IG has so much more failures.

Yes, Kickstarter does curate it's submissions and IGG does not. We weren't shocked by the success % but rather the large gap in money raised considering IGG has 4 times the amount of campaigns Kickstarter has

Very true. However, Indiegogo has far more launched projects. We found that most revenue is generated from the top 10% of funded projects. Kickstarter owns this space.

Two uses of "over X" in the first 2 "insights" raises my marketing-speak/bias alarm. I'd prefer to see exact numbers. Or just leave out the adjective.

"Cumulatively, Kickstarter (KS) has over 110,000 campaigns..."

"KS ($612M) has successfully raised over 6 times more dollars than IGG ($98M)."

Why did Ubuntu choose Indiegogo over Kickstarter?

Kickstarter does not allow product design campaigns that don't have any physical products and also no rewards in mass quantities. Indiegogo is less strict.

From: http://www.kickstarter.com/help/guidelines

>>> Projects cannot offer rewards in bulk quantities (more than 10). <<<

>>> No product simulations or photorealistic renderings

Technical drawings, CAD designs, sketches, and other parts of the design process are awesome and encouraged. Photorealistic renderings and simulations that could be mistaken for finished products or real events, however, are not allowed. <<<

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