1. nphaskins

    Crowdfunding in the WordPress space is relatively new, and I think that’s played a big role in the fact that most of the open-sourced campaigns for WordPress software so far have not been fully funded. You absolutely have to have all your ducks in a row, because you won’t get a second chance on making that killer first impression.


    • jonedmonton

      I agree. Part of the “problem”, I think, is that WordPress has been so fortunate to have so many great plugins and themes, as well as components of WordPress itself, developed and supported “for free” by skilled people either with the time or with an organization behind them that pays their salary while they do their work as a way to give back to the WordPress Community. For this and a number of other reasons, “Paid” Themes and Plugins have garnered a negative reputation with many people, and Crowdfunding is viewed with suspicion as a result.


  2. Christopher Price

    As someone running a Kickstarter currently (Console OS, shamelessly linked), I can tell you that the crowd funding platform is essential.

    Doing it yourself takes massive resources that you could otherwise spend on getting funds raised. It also provides a gallery, for window shopping. Lots of people impulse buy multiple crowd-funded campaigns.

    Region restrictions are a pain, but this one sounds like it was perfect for Indiegogo.


  3. Robin

    I wish versionpress well. I really do. God knows we really need this solution. I’ve shared it with not only friends and peers but also on social sites.

    At the same time, it is a wonderful case study of how not to launch a plugin or any e-product:

    Don’t use a third party platform that can give you extra visibility, credibility and trustworthiness (when asked give a suspiciously inaccurate answer about geography… indiegogo?)
    Don’t plan ahead a campaign. Instead, just create a website with a facebook and twitter account.
    Don’t explain who you are, what your strengths are, what your past accomplishments are, etc.
    Don’t reach out to any of the 100 or so large, medium and small wordpress blogs and sites to spread the word.
    Don’t create a viral loop by having those who want to support you be able to spread the word by just retweeting, email, etc.
    Don’t plan ahead on the most fundamental question of a wordpress plugin: license – just wing it and change horses midstream, what can go wrong?
    Don’t first approach well established brands (eg envato) to partner with you before doing a public launch – this would create further credibility, who needs that? approach them later or just wing it
    Don’t have a well thought out plan of how you will monetize the plugin or have any sort of longer term plan whatsoever.

    It didn’t help versionpress that Matt Shaw released revisr which is basically the same functionality for free at the wordpress plugin repository just days before their launch. Sure, revisr is not yet fully polished and it doesn’t have documentation but it exists and you can already take it for a spin. And from what I can see, Matt is incredibly responsive and active in the support forum and has been pushing out updates like a rabid wolverine on acid – already at v1.4.


    Anyone out there who want to, can draw some very valuable lessons from all this.


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