Ngosa Chungu and Chosa Mweemba, are two Zambian media magnates, who have worked on Projects in Social Media, Video and Film. This time around they caught my attention for a little used method of funding projects called Kickstarter. What makes this even more interesting is that the crowd-funding service is not new just that we have never heard of a Zambian Kickstarter project. Maybe there are more out there but that this one is combining the owners’ knowledge of social media, blogging, and their own social networks to get the word out there on what they want to achieve.
Ngosa is not new to media, we last saw her at a National Arts Council event tweeting away. But through her work, they, for the first time, were able to get social media buzzing on the Ngoma Awards. This they did as Purple Tembo Media, a local media production outfit. Ngosa also runs Digital Cascade, a multimedia creative collaboration, as well as media consultant for events and/or conferences. Nowadays, they sponsor Startup Junction at Lusaka’s Smuggler’s Inn.
It was at Startup Junction that they met Joe and Julia Brown, whose idea to use crowdfunding, and Ngosa’s know-how in presenting and production, led to the idea to produce documentaries.
With Chosa Mweemba, the freelance videographer and Director of Photography, the two have teamed up to produce the documentary series.
The work started with a promo video, which can be seen here, and so far the project has had 6 backers (sponsors), and a total of GBP415 (around K2, 200) has been raised out of GBP1, 950. The project could use much needed support if you do one or both of the following:
- Share this project with your network. The more people hear about this, the more likely we are to hit the target.
- Back the project, by donating anything, no matter how small, or how big! Everything helps towards achieving this goal. Thus, if you always wanted better production, and that feel-good kick that you helped, lend a hand and spread the word or donate any amount.
We like this project on a whole different level, as we can use it to teach people how Kickstarter works. Forget the begging for sponsorship letters you have written to numerous corporate bodies or NGOs, Kickstarter can actually help you if you are a startup or an existing business find capital to fund your project. The best part about Kickstarter is it is targeted at creatives. The mission of Kickstarter is to help creative people — artists, musicians, filmmakers, designers and the like — fund their own creative projects.
Kickstarter is based on a simple principle – crowdfunding. Crowdfunding is a different approach to crowdsourcing, in which an organization uses the talents and time of hundreds, thousands or millions of people to create or improve a product or service. Wikipedia is a prime example of crowdsourcing. Instead of hiring professional writers to research and write each encyclopedia entry, Wikipedia taps the collective knowledge of millions of users to create and edit the articles for free.
In the same way, when too many hands get involved in a creative project, Kickstarter can help them pool resources: talent, equipment, and knowledge, by helping them secure funding within a limited amount of time (all projects have end dates J) and for a specific sum of money (US$ mostly).
Similarly, Kickstarter uses crowdfunding to pay for creative projects by soliciting small donations from the “crowd,” which are the anonymous patrons that visit the site. Kickstarter didn’t invent crowdfunding: Different Web sites, blogs and charitable organizations have been perfecting the idea of so-called micropatronage since the mid-1990s. President Barack Obama funded 88 percent of his 2008 presidential campaign through individual donations, many of them small ($250 or less) and collected via the Internet. But part of the reason Kickstarter has been so successful has to do with the subtle twists and restrictions it has imposed on the crowdfunding model. The Kickstarter model has produced over $75 million in arts funding in two short years.
Before you get excited to rush off and craft your own idea for Kickstarter, start by joining the site, building your own network, and sharing your own ideas with others. When the time comes for you to pitch a new idea, your project is more likely to hit its milestones, and be overfunded in no time. And it starts with you also giving this project a little of your own money right here from as little as GBP 1.