Bathtub Pledges Pt.1

Hey guys. I’ve just spent about 4 hours reading many many crowdfunding blogs and this has resulted in me becoming a) motivated to write another post b) more informed about crowdfunding and (as a consequence of b) c) pretentious enough to think I can coin my own phrase. Good news for you; you get to hear me talk about it (please don’t stop reading).

SO I’m probably not the first person to use the term “Bathtub Pledges” but I typed it in on Google and couldn’t find it on the first four pages and apparently that’s enough to give me confidence to write a blog post on it so…. here we go.

Did you know that according to Kickstarter statistics 78% of projects that raise more than 20% of their goal were successfully funded? Did you also know that 73% of successful projects receive, on average, 17% of their funding goal on the first day?

Now, I am no detective but 17 and 20 are numbers that are quite close together. What this says is that the first day and potentially, the first few hours of your campaign can decide your campaign’s fate.  To strengthen this theory – Vincent Etter, Matthias Grossglauser and Patrick Thiran from The School of Computer and Communication Sciences in Lausanne, Switzerland have actually managed to devise an algorithm* that can predict the success of a campaign within the first 4 hours with a 76% accuracy! This means you need to, and to quote Etter (and to paraphrase me and the girls during Freshers week), “Launch Hard or Go Home!”.

How do you do this?  YOU EMPTY A BATHTUB OF PLEDGES. (It took me a while to get there but we’re here now and it feels great)

“Launching hard” means launching an email capture page, setting up a Thunderclap**, building up your social media, getting your campaign on the blogs that your target audience love and HUGELY hyping your launch date. I’m talking Seb-Coe-Olympics-2012 style. You want to have a “bathtub” that is absolutely full to the brim of loyal fans ready to become your early adopters and they need to know exactly when you’re going to pull that plug. This is so important because the first form of Kickstarter promotion you get as a new project is on the “Recently Launched” page. Once you’re over a day old, you’re replaced with sparkly new projects that are way younger and hotter than you and, if you haven’t taken that opportunity, you’re unlikely to get Kickstarter’s attention again.

So fill that bathtub until it falls through the ensuite floor – throw in the scented oils and the lush bath bombs and the body glitter because, when it comes to starting a crowdfunding campaign, if you don’t launch hard you might as well ….GO HOME (or go to venture capitalism…) See ya.

P.S. The eagle-eyed among you may have noticed that this says “Part 1” – there will be another post coming soon because this “Bathtub Pledges” thing has so many levels I can’t even…stay tuned folks.

*It’s called “Launch Hard or Go Home!” and it contains a hella load of really complicated maths because by-jove these people know what they’re talking about. Their website “Sidekick”, is an incredible resource for crowdfunding so 100% start following if you ever want to launch.

**Thunderclap, if you aren’t aware, is a social media tool that campaigns can use on the day of their launch. Users sign up allowing Thunderclap to post a status, tweet etc. on their behalf. This means on the day of your launch you can have thousands of people all promoting your campaign at the same time which can result in your project going viral. Find them on


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