Artist Corner: Hello, The Future!
Hiya, readers! For this installment of Artist Corner, we at GeekGirlCon connected with Nicole Dieker of Hello, The Future! She has been reaping the successes of her recent Kickstarter and took the time out to answer a few questions from us in between shows.
1: For folks not familiar with your music, how would you describe your sound?
“Nerd folk” is probably the most accurate statement. I say “geekrock” a lot too. Sometimes I tell people I sound like “girl Jonathan Coulton,” which I really don’t, but there’s a lot of overlap between people who like JoCo and people who like my songs.
2: You have recently completed a successful Kickstarter! What was the most rewarding part of the whole process?
Learning that I have a fan base willing to support an unfinished project.
By this point, I was nearly three years into performing as Hello, The Future! and I looked at the Kickstarter as a bit of a milestone marker; if I couldn’t get support for this project, I should step back from the full-time independent musicianry.
Then we not only funded the project, but also funded two stretch goals. It was an amazing feeling, knowing I had a team ready to support and back my work.
3: What are some obstacles you have faced as you were promoting The Geek Girl EP?
Boosting the signal is always the biggest obstacle. There are so many musicians and so many Kickstarters and so many tweets and videos and Facebook posts.
In my case, I started telling the story of the Kickstarter long before I actually announced the Kickstarter. I involved my audience in the process from the very beginning, showing them drafts of songs and drafts of rewards, letting them know how invested I was in this project and how much I wanted to give them the best work I could.
This helped because when we were ready to launch the Kickstarter, the audience was already ready to back. I didn’t have to spend the first week of the Kickstarter explaining it to people.
The other smart thing I did was get on as many podcasts and websites as I could. I would watch the stats, and every time I did an interview (even for a small podcast) the signal would boost and more people would back the project.
4: What is the most valuable advice you can offer for someone thinking of starting their own Kickstarter?
I have two pieces of advice.
1: Test your project and rewards with your fans before you launch the Kickstarter. I put an early draft of my Kickstarter online and asked my audience to tear it apart, which they willingly did (the internet seems to enjoy that kind of thing). They gave me a lot of useful information, including which rewards they liked (and which rewards they didn’t like at all) and helped me shape the final draft of the project.
2: Do the math, for both the money and the time. Make a budget. Create an estimate of how much it will cost to produce the main project, and then add on how much it will cost to produce and ship all of the rewards. Remember that Kickstarter and Amazon each take their cut, and that there’ll likely be taxes you’ll need to pay as well. Then figure out in which order you’re going to fulfill and ship the rewards, and how much time you’ll need to produce each of them (while you’re simultaneously working on the main project). That’ll help you create a realistic plan of action for the Kickstarter.
5: What are you geeky about right now?
I am coming late to the Song of Ice and Fire series, having discovered it through the Game of Thrones HBO show. Nearly finished with A Feast For Crows at this point. Because I am a redhead, I’m making a Hipster Melisandre costume for Halloween which includes a t-shirt that reads “I served R’hllor before it was cool.”
Thanks again for taking some time out of your hustle for GeekGirlCon, Nicole! Congratulations again on not only a great EP, but a successful Kickstarter!
To follow the adventuers of Hello, The Future!, please visit the following:
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