Pledge Music rolled out a site redesign this past weekend. The company has always offered musicians more than just crowdfunding, and with this redesign and the plans they have set out for the future, they seem to be continuing in that direction.
Pledge Music has traditionally been lumped together with other crowd funding platforms like Kickstarter and Indiegogo. While it does offer fan funding and pre-sale functionalities, Pledge Music really takes artists from start to finish in a way that’s really focused on music. The platform’s focus has been providing a place for artists to manage artist/fan relationships through that process, and this redesign definitely supports that.
Check out this write-up by Billboard to learn more about the redesign.
The new site instead lets artists offer a “bento box” menu of merchandise, limited edition memorabilia, private concerts, tickets and, of course, music. Artists can still hold crowdfunding campaigns to help finance the production of new albums, but that is now just one of several direct-to-fan options bands can raise money on the PledgeMusic platform.
“I’m a fan of crowdfunding, but it’s not always the correct tool to use for music,” said PledgeMusic President and Founder Benji Rogers. “One of our artists put it best when they said that with crowdfunding, the artists thanked the fans at the end of a campaign. But with other types of direct-to-fan sales, it’s fans thanked them. It changes the way fans think about artists.”
Rogers said crowdfunding also limits the type of things bands can sell, usually to finished albums and some accompanying merchandise. Instead, PledgeMusic has redesigned its platform to let artists capture revenue even as they’re making the album, through update releases or VIP access to studio recording sessions, for example. This gives artists more than one bite at raising funds as they make an album, something that occurs only once a year or two for most bands.
Check out the write up by Clyde Smith of Hypebot about the redesign and the future of Pledge Music:
Benji Rogers says the redesign culminates their best thoughts on what they’re doing at PledgeMusic. For example, they’ve seen a growing willingness for fans to check out acts they’re introduced to on the platform as well as a subgroup of superfans who are pledging across campaigns.
The redesign supports the idea that PledgeMusic could become a destination for browsing, discovery and deeper fan involvement beyond individual campaigns.
Longer term PledgeMusic is interested in finding ways to integrate partners that are now primarily recommendations to artists that need additional services. This would be a big task, depending on what approach is taken, but such an integration is what reveals PledgeMusic’s full potential.