Hey folks. With only a week left, I wanted to give you a quick update on the Bardsworth IndieGoGo campaign (for those of you who haven’t watched the latest update video), and share a few thoughts on it. First of all, as of my writing this, we are at $1,048 contributed by 14 people, which is over 1/3 of the way to the goal. I’ve been thanking the people as I go along, but I wanted to thank everyone once again for their contributions and their help in spreading the word.
Now, here’s the part of the post that is a little difficult for me to write, because I don’t want to come off as ungrateful… so bear with me. There was a partial ulterior motive to me doing this campaign, and that was to see if there was a genuine desire for Bardsworth merchandise. I opened the Bardsworth store months ago after putting in a lot of hard work to get it up and running, and to this date there have been no sales of the merchandise in there. To be fair, there might not be anything in there that anyone wants, and I haven’t actually listed everything I have in stock. So that’s an experiment that’s still ongoing. However, it was still a bit disheartening, so I launched the IndieGoGo campaign with the hope that people would be really excited about a new Bardsworth book after eight years.
That hope hasn’t quite been met. As I said, I’m super grateful for the people who have backed the campaign and for the people who have helped spread the word, and $1,048 is nothing to sneeze at, but that’s a tiny percentage of people who read the comic. And don’t misunderstand; this isn’t about the money. This about seeing how much of a demand there is for merchandise. And it doesn’t seem like there really is.
I’m not trying to shame any of you or guilt any of you into contributing. I’m trying to point out that from my perspective, it doesn’t seem like Bardsworth merchandise is something that the majority of you wants. In the webcomic world, merchandise sales have always been a cornerstone for supporting the business, and books are one of the prime bits of merchandise demanded. But this campaign is telling me that maybe that’s not the case with Bardsworth, and if that is the case, then I want you folks to tell me point blank so I can start putting my efforts into promoting other ways to support the comic, like Patreon.
If you have anything to say on the subject, my ears are open and I’m listening. Drop a line in the comments, send me an email, message me on Facebook, tweet at me, show up at my house with cookies, whatever (okay, maybe not that last one, even though I like cookies). I want to give you guys what you want, but right now I’m not sure what it is you want, other than the comic (and if that’s all you want, then we need to have another discussion down the road).
Thanks for being understanding, dear readers.