Making it Count
GU is a 13 year old webcomic, born of MMO guild chat, that grew into an industry wide love letter. And where viewer numbers are still pretty high, ad revenue is terrible. I'd like to be able to do the comics without focussing on that aspect of the "business".
Needs and Wants
I've drilled it down to ask for as little as possible. $13,500 minus the fees and such won't be enough to completely meet the need, it will ease the situation a bit and let me scrap the tower ad from the site. Meeting stretch goals will allow us to peel other ads off the site as well. We'll talk about that later though.
Though the total ad value on my site is worth far more than $12,000 per position for an entire year, that's all I need to get buy. And if I can get away from dependence on Ad revenue I can focus more on the comic, commissions, and playing games which is what the site is all about.
So, if we hit the first $13,500, we'll pull the 160x600 tower add off of the site. At the first stretch goal we'll take down the 728x90 leaderboard ad. At the second we'll tear down the last vesitages of the Ad State and proclaim our freedom from it's regime for a full year.
No Cash? No Problem!
If you don't have any cash on hand, don't worry. Trust me; I understand. But please feel free to tell other people about the project. Facebook, Twitter, IndieGoGo's share tools, emails to freinds, family and guild mates, forums posts, whatever you feel comfortable with.
As I mentioned above if we hit the $13,500 goal we'll take the primary ad position (160x600) off of the GU site entirely. But there's more work that can be done.
$27,000 - Remove the Leaderboard Ad
If I'm honest, I'd like to see this 728x90 ad unit go first. But from the standpoint of redesigning the website (which I'm currently in the process of doing) it's easier to have this location be the second size to come down.
$40,500 - Remove the Ad Block
The 300x250 Ad Block is the most innocuous of the bunch. It's a natural fit for removal last because it's so easy to move and code around.
$45,000 - No Commission Come-Ons
I know there will be readers that will want commissions no matter what. But I also know that there are some readers who don't like seeing the Artist For Sale! and GU Commissions banners. So if we hit this stretch, I will make every effort to avoid hawking my artistic wares. The only exception would be in the case of an unforseen emergency.
$60,000 - Bonus Comics!
If by some miracle we manage to hit $60,000 I will produce -AT LEAST- 2 bonus, non-GU comics per month, for a year, based on my group's table top gaming experiences. These comics will also be provided ad free.
$75K - ???
I'll tell you about this exciting stretch goal if we hit $40,500 and strip all ads off the site.
I've got more questions, where can I send them? firstname.lastname@example.org
What is the Fancast? The Fancast is a part of the GU Forums where I post artwork that's not readily available elsewhere on the site. I'm hoping that I willl get to ad even more Fancast Content if the Project funds and I don't have to worry about dealing with ad revenue.
About the Random Panel Reward Perk? The random selection will be made from the available panels ($25 and up), after the Pick-A-Panel funders make their choices. You can see what's currently available here: http://www.gucomics.com/archives/pricelist.php
Quick-Sketch Perk: can I pick the subject matter? Requests are welcomed, but please keep it to just a few words. Otherwise the quick sketch is not so quick. Please also note: These will not be digitally produced. There aren't many my tangible sketches floating around.
Can fans buy a Corporate Sponsorship for a game they like? Yes, if a group of players got together to buy a "corporate sponsor"ship, I would certainly focus on their game of choice for a month. A couple of things to note though: 1) It would still have to be a game that I could personally endorse and play. 2) I would not be able to put that game's ads into my ad inventory without the game developer's permission.
What happens if you don't hit $13,500? Depending on your perk level you will be given access to the Fancast for the listed amount of time. If we manage to bring in $8000 or more I will add a login to the main GU site so that Fancast members still receive an ad free GU.
What if you go over $75K? Yeah this is highly unlikely. Honestly I'd be surprised is we even hit the goal. But, just in case, I have plans for up to $200K. If we get anywhere near $75, I will dream up more stretch goals.
When will the ad free site go live? Immediately. Because we're using Flex Funding, as soon as I get the email from Indiegogo that says we hit our goal, I'll go in and pull the 160x600 ad from the site's code. Same with each of the other ad removal stretch goals.
Why are the delivery dates so many months away? Really it's just giving myself plenty of buffer time JUUUST incase. I expect everything will be finished and out the door much sooner than the "estimated delivery date".
Didn't Penny Arcade already do this? Yup.