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What do you think of $1 rewards?

Good idea or bad idea? If you think they're a good idea, why do you like them and what do you think are some good / fun / creative uses for them? Is there a bad way to use them?
Kickstarter Asked on
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John Wrot!
8-time creator
409
Last edited on

The $1 level is not about collecting money.  It's about collecting backers.

For every 10 backers you have you hopefully have at least one backer that shares your project.  But your mom isn't interested in your lightning-proof-beer-koozie, nor are most of your friends.  Sorry, they're not pledging $64 to get one. But you can pretty easily talk them into pledging $1 "to support you" and maybe just maybe they'll share it with their friends.

Also if you allow post-campaign upgrades via a pledge manager or the like... give them a way to get in for $1.

Anything Digital is a good use for the $1 Tier:

  • A Black & White Print & Play
  • A digital print of your art
  • A digital print of your book cover, or event program
  • 1 free entry to your cover charged place or event (restaurant/etc.)
  • Electronic thank you - Video, email, personalized e card, named on your website etc.

Just be sure to offer the $1 trinket to all higher level backers too, either for free, or as a $1 add on.

Thanks for reading.  Heart if it was helpful.

More tips on crowdfunding here.

John Wrot!

9 comments

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Ashley Cooper
2-time creator
132
Answered on

Since every dollar counts in an all-or-nothing model (as Kickstarter is), I think dollar reward levels can be great. Sometimes it can be easier to convince 50 people to give you $1 each than for one person to give you $50. 

It's a great spot to insert some small, but cool digital rewards. Mostly, I think people give $1 because they don't have a lot of disposable income in the moment, but still want to support/be a part of the campaign. It's a good way to keep them involved via project updates, as well as hopefully to convince them to upgrade to a $5 or $10 tier throughout the campaign by promoting any cool progress on the project/concept while the campaign is live. At the end of campaigns, it's not uncommon to do a push to your existing backers asking people to back the next tier up. Only a small percentage usually do, but anything that gets you closer to the goal is worth the effort.

I would say, like any reward tier, you want to try to make the $1 reward something cool that people would actually use/like. Maybe it's a mobile/desktop wallpaper with your main character on it, or a digital copy of the script for your film. These things are easy to give away, and cost you nothing, so they make great entry level rewards.

2 comments

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Lisa Vollrath
7-time creator
77
Answered on

I've done four Kickstarter campaigns, and I always include a $1 reward that gives access to the backer updates. There are always people who just want to throw a dollar in to watch the project and get the updates. All those dollars add up, and while those backers are getting updates, they might see something that prompts them to increase their pledges.

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A K Nicholas
18-time creator
74
Answered on

I can only speak from my niche, perhaps a $1 reward has benefits for certain campaigns, especially if backer count is more important than funds raised. I've never used a $1 reward. It's a lot easier to get 2 people to pledge $100 each than 200 people at $1. I did offer a $5 reward on my current campaign and it has generated 0.089% of the revenue so far. I also think saying "every dollar helps" not only sounds desperate but is also inaccurate. I think you definitely need at least one reward at $25 or below, but you should also hit the $100, $250, and $500 levels. 

Even if you don't have a $1 reward, people can still pledge $1 for no reward to any campaign and be able to comment and get updates.

(just my two cents.)

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Artem Starostenko
4-time creator
11
Answered on

I think it`s good idea, backer will see your updates, also followers of this backer will see your project.

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Paul Roman Martinez
12-time creator
14
Answered on

I think $1 rewards are a wasted opportunity. It is very hard to drive traffic to your project and get people engaged. If you manage to get someone to your page and they like it enough to support you and enter in their card number but only put out one dollar then you just missed out on the chance for them to get a higher reward level. Now they may feel like they are a backer and when other people see that you have more than one dollar level backer they may think that's an acceptable way of supporting your project. I say, don't even give them that option. If they want to be reminded of the project they can star it and it will send them a reminder email toward the end. Then they may come back and pledge more than a dollar. But I would hate for anyone to see my project and think $1 is going to get me anywhere. 

1 comment

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Joanna Rodahl
Creator
11
Answered on

From a buyers perspective, sometimes i'll like a project but won't want anything.  The dollar reward allows me to say "I like you."

1 comment

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Renee Launer
6-time creator
90
Last edited on

I think they are essential.

Kickstarter provides no way for backers to talk to other backers other than through a project that they've ALREADY committed themselves to supporting.   I think that's actually a good thing because it practically eliminates spam.   Many backers (myself included) back the project, join in the conversations, ask questions, etc - then either bump their pledge up to a 'real' level or reverse their pledge in the last few days if they decide not to do it.

If your lowest pledge level is (say) $30 - and a lot of people do that - then your project total can take a nose-dive in the last few days.   Better to offer a $1 level and have a more realistic idea of how well your project is doing.

Also, all of your project updates go to all of your backers via email - even after the project is finished so if you ever run another kickstarter, and announce it on your first - those $1 backers will all get to hear about it.

2 comments

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Alex Eames - RasPi.TV
7-time creator
331
Answered on

It appears that I'm going to be the lone dissenter here. While I agree that it's important to have a 'low-level' pledge, I don't think it has to be $1/£1. I just ran a fairly successful campaign where the minimum pledge was £4 (~$6).

It seems to me that most people choose the lowest level pledge just for the right to be able to see any private updates and to be able to comment on the KS page. I actually prefer to reduce the admin overhead and not take those people with me. Not all commenters are welcome. Some are positively unwelcome and you can't moderate or edit their comments (you can't even correct your own errors on your own comments - which I think you ought to be able to do).

Although it has to be said, you can pledge $1/£1 for no reward and still leave comments, but most people don't know that.

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John Rap
34-time creator
83
Answered on
Both of my project so far have offered the digital version of the work for one dollar. I don't want to miss a connection with someone who likes the work over price. There will be other projects, or maybe even the same project. On my last project about 10% of the backers ended up at a higher reward level, after originally buying in at $1.
2 comments

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Lizzy Miles
3-time creator
22
Answered on

I think $1 or $5 rewards are a good idea because sometimes there are people in your network who want to support YOU but have no interest in your product. Allowing $1 donation is a win-win because they feel good and you feel good from the support. I agree with other posters that it is nice to have something beyond "you'll be appreciated."

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Bernat Moreno
3-time creator
30
Last edited on

1$ REWARD? BETTER FREE

I think if the main purpose of having a 1$ reward is to collect backers to send them updates, it´s better to drive these users to your newsletter offering something free. You will collect more backers than just offering a 1$ reward. In my experience in other crowdfunding campaigns 1$ rewards it does not help (nothing) to achieve your goals. Having a huge email list helps much more.

PROS

Much more emails than just asking for 1$
- You can send updates to your subscribers and ask them to back for a reward (or share your campaign)
- You don´t need to care about preparing the 1$ rewards (you can make an automatic response to your subscribers with your digital free rewards)
- You can re-engage users who forgot to back your project but subscribed to your newsletter (it´s much easier to subscribe to a newsletter than back a project). People are lazy (me too, of course).

CONS

- You need a newsletter plugin for your website (or similar tools)
- You may get 20$ less than if you have used the 1$

I´ll try that way in my next project.

UPDATE: Finally I tryied a combination of both (giving something free and offering the 2€ reward) on my current project.

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Ariel Krakowski
4-time creator
6
Answered on

I think you might as well include a simple $1 reward tier. You can't earn anything significant from $1, but it boosts your backer numbers and lets people follow your project. 

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Mark Chavez
Creator
6
Answered on

I think the value of the 1 USD reward is it's 1 dollar or MORE.  It gives people the opportunity to give something to the project, and they can decide how much more than 1 dollar.  Its a small amount but something is better than nothing.  

I added a dollar reward during the campaign because that's what some backers wanted.  

Next project will start with a dollar reward.

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Antoinette Rogers
Creator
6
Answered on

Every dollar counts in raising money for anything. I think every backer should receive something regardless of the amount they donate. A great idea could be a letter of appreciation. It really is the thought that counts!

1 comment

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Adam Clark
8
Answered on

If you plan to use any sort of post-campaign pledge management tool and plan to let folks potentially upgrade, $1 pledge levels can provide an easy way to allow folks who may want to actually participate at a later time an easy avenue to do so.

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Kobold Press
12-time creator
5
Answered on

They've been sort of mixed. I tend to want to offer something for those backers, but the reality is that anything other than a minor digital reward or thank-you is a poor use of time.

Currently I think of them largely as a way for more skeptical backers to remember about a project, hear how it goes, and (if I'm lucky) buy the resulting work at retail when it is released.

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Sarah Lamb
4-time creator
11
Answered on

I think this is a good way for people who support your project, but may not be able to support it so much financially to also help contribute. Especially friends and family who may already have access to your 'rewards' for free in normal life. I also think it's a good way for people to feel involved without breaking the bank.

2 comments

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Ryan Dunlap
2-time creator
92
Answered on

I think it really depends on what the $1 gets the backer. If it's just a tip jar, then I think the few dollars it brings in might not justify the potential choice paralysis that some backers can face when they see too many tiers.

I believe most backers have a max dollar amount in mind as a budget that can be influenced by what is offered in the tiers. If there's something really cool at $1, or it's a "pay as little as $1 for the main reward" type of campaign, then I get using that, but I'd rather people see what the fairest, market valued tier is and try to focus them on that. A $1 backer isn't usually someone who is committed to supporting you in anything more than a casual way (unless they just happen to want to check updates and then decide later, but nothing keeps them from not picking a category and just backing for $1 anyway...).

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Trevor Lehmann
2-time creator
47
Answered on

$1 are great. A simply thank you on a webpage is a great gesture without incurring a huge cost. The second you start offering physical rewards or offering to alter the project however (such as writing a thank you in a small/compact manual, you are asking for trouble.

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Kai Herbertz
3-time creator
5
Answered on

I used to dislike the $1 reward, but after people overpaid the rewards they picked on my first campaign, I realized that the general perception of the $1 reward is not "rip off," but rather a way for people to show their general interest in and support for a project. Kickstarter backers are typically very generous people, who support a project to see it happen, instead of being focused on "value for money."
For that reason, I added the $1 (or rather €1) reward to my latest project and will continue to do so in the future.

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Ice, Myark, Casper and Denis Stewart
8-time creator
5
Answered on

My last project had about 2 $1 backers out of over 1000 pledges because I did not pay the backers club their $300 and why the $1 amounts stopped which I find in some way deceiving such as statistics for backer club involvement also they said it makes your project look like it has lots of backers which I find dishonest, also when some one cancels a pledge and replaces with $1 it feels, what did I do wrong to upset that backer as $1 in this day and age is worthless unless you are a homeless beggar, as far as paying a $1 to make comments or to see updates its really simple which is to make your project open to all and that they do not have to be ransomed and pay $1 to have a say or ask a question or to see the updates.

You will also notice when a creator shows a $1 for a reward it’s almost none are interested so the $1 in my experienced view can be used as a scam or a way to have a dig at the creator 

To be honest $1 should not be encouraged

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Audrey-Anne Boucher (deleted)
Creator
6
Answered on

I like the idea... some may say that people giving only 1$ are cheap but I think that is shows the person's interrest in your project. 1$ may not be that much but it a way for people without a lot of money to contribute to something and to have feedbacks on projects that they like. Not everyone can afford to spend 100$ on someone else's project.

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Alersteam
Creator
6
Last edited on

It doesn't look like people use it a lot. But every dollar counts!

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Yellow Sheed
4
Answered on
  • Every dollar can help !

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Doug Monahan
Creator
52
Answered on

I think the $1 rewards aren't about the money - not even close. You can't even buy a Big Mac for a dollar and the junk you can buy at the $1 Store is just that junk. But - I wouldn't dismiss the dollar rewards as not important - in fact - the dollar rewards might possibly be the most important pledges you receive. The investment bankers watch Kickstarter very closely, the angel investors watch it very closely as well. Other entrepreneurs watch campaigns very closely. Each of these individuals want to see how professional you run a campaign - they want to be able to see how you act, how you deliver and a dollar pledge offers them an opportunity to receive your updates, thoroughly evaluate your idea and keep track of who they think it is important. Then there are others who simply don't have much money. Money is a very scarce commodity - and the $1 pledges are more of a vote of confidence - don't dismiss them - for that $1 pledge could be coming from the next Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Dr. Dre - you never know.

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Sean Tilley
64
Last edited on

I think that they're a great means for getting people involved in the campaign. There are plenty of backers who love an idea, but cannot commit a huge amount right away for a number of reasons. A low barrier of entry gives anybody the ability to contribute something, and can feel a bit more inviting instead of a campaign with "no reward selected" as a perk. Sometimes the $1 pledge can be taken to great effect by including a personal thank you or access to digital content.

This can also be handy for campaigns that intend to offer add-on items in addition to traditional pledges, as backers may change their mind at a later date and decide that they want to contribute more to your campaign. Many of these backers may also contribute to future campaigns that you decide to run.

Full disclosure - this commentator works at BackerKit, a post-campaign platform for project creators.

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Stevepunk
4
Last edited on

A $1 backer receives updates, can participate in the comments sections and can be upsold to a higher tier.
It is much easier to upsell an existing customer who has already scaled the paywall, already has an account, has already entered all of their details, etc.

Compared to a $0 backer which can do none of these things.  

I like to think of $1 backers as potential fans. You need to engage with them to bring them over the line and they can be some of your biggest supporters in the end. And even if they can't afford to pledge higher they can still share your project around to their friends. Support isn't always monetary.

Every backer, every fan, every supporter is valuable!

A $1 reward is basically a "Like and Subscribe" button.

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Ben Smith , Ross Calvert
3
Answered on

I am just in the middle of creating my first Kick starter and we have included a £1 reward of 1 X pre workout mix

because of what makes us different in the pre workout market I strongly believe that we need to provide to those that want to sample our product before committing to paying for a month for example as this is quite a bit more expensive

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the qlib
2-time creator
2
Answered on

We didn't want to have a meaningless 1$ reward. So while our project is about kids furniture, we made it into a charity pledge where 50% goes into kids furniture for children hospices in Germany. People like the option so far, so I think it was a good choice.

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Nishea Martinez
Creator
1
Answered on

I didn't think of this, but this is great with an email thank you!!  I'm going to add this to my project.  Thank you guys for this!

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Dave & Calvin Laituri
13-time creator
80
Answered on

We've run 10 campaigns - our philosophy is that if it isn't a product at the center of the campaign, it shouldn't be there. People will always give $1 to pump up their backed projects stats, no need to create a pledge level for them - it makes your pledge levels harder to read.

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Janet Salmond aka Holly Salmond
1
Answered on

I do think they are a great way to have people who feel they have no money can still be apart in donating.

Limitless an Event I go to... There is maybe a 2-30 hour time period that they make their tickets for $1.00 For those that donate that one dollar I would suggest they use that one dollar for the ticket during that hour just as much as if they were to put a dollar here in donating for kickstarter.com It definitely is a good starter for those that love to support people when things are tight.

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David A. Barak
1
Answered on

I've seen film campaigns where $1 contributors get nothing other than thanks in the credits. It seems to me that anyone that contributes money, labor, or other support (donated meals, free equipment loans, etc.) should get free access to an online version of the film. They're all members of the production team in some sense, and providing them with password-protected links before anyone else has access seems like the right thing to do.

In fact, because these people are part of the team and the video is restricted, most festivals won't consider this a public exhibition, which would otherwise disqualify the film. I'm putting together a Kickstarter campaign, and all contributing levels will get a password-protected link once the film is finished. I did, however, specify that the link would expire after a set amount of time (I think it was two weeks). Although not really needed, it's one extra level of protection for festivals that require that they be the host of a film's public premiere.

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Maxime Benoit
1
Answered on

It's not to much

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george yap
3
Answered on

1 pound or 1 dollar rewards ,it is still a considerate thought.  With the economic downturn and inflation,  it is very hard for all of us to have a budget and balance account feasible in this DNA today!  If my clothing line or laundry line is in my favour of the reward and have a majority interest,just imagine how much the accumulate of the total account where everyone number in thousand, which is $1000.00, that's the power of 1.  Well, what about in 10,000.?

Even if i get half of the investment (2500/2 = $1250), with this interest of the 1000 reward, I am already on my way to fulfil my project because I can contribute from mine of this half the money.And this 1000 reward will benefit from me in the Kickstart 

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kirk dean
0
Answered on

Only my opinion but for me I've never given a dollar. I'm either in for product or not.  But i might be convenienced to buy a key chain or t shirt to be a backer

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Joe Clothier
Creator
0
Answered on

I think the $1 reward is a way of the backer saying thanks for sharing your project and taking a risk and having a go. Backers are on Kickstarter to share the experience of this journey with you as the creator just as much as you so eagerly want them to be a part of your project funding! I think there's nothing wrong with it - its almost like a way of saying congratulations for stepping out!

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Gabriele Galassi
Creator
0
Answered on

But i think 1 dollar is ok if someone like the project but is not helpful for him , or he can't use for some reason or simply he like the project .

Is not good for all acampaign but can help someone who have not a big goal to find a way to find backers 

Gabriele

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Techspirit Australia
Creator
0
Answered on

Ok guys, I appreciate the emotional side of this however we all need to understand that WE ALL ARE HERE TO DELIVER!!!

We all wants to make our dream come true but how about making our backers share our passion by allowing them to have a peek in our dreams too. This will be done by attracting more backers with tangible returns, I hope I am clear. NOT JUST THANKS, NOT JUST GREAT JOB, this is a part of hard earned money by someone to support your cause. BE MORE RESPECTFUL AND SUPER HONEST by giving them a surprise which they did not expect while being in your financial limits. Backers are most important.

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Eneida Chavez
0
Answered on

Lo del 1$ me parece fenomenal no quiero empezar mi proyecto con el amonto total del projecto solo empezar con las donaciones desde 1 penny hasta lo que el donante pueda 

Gracias si  puedo lo realizo si no por lo menos lo intente solo para ayudar con mi educacion a extenderla por todo el mundo

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Graeme Edgerton
0
Answered on

It is   a big thing get people interested 

I need someone to back me I have a good idea but no money to make it work so simple 

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