RadioandMusic
| 05 Apr 2020
Wishberry hopes to double its numbers in the music sector by end of the year

Crowdfunding platform, Wishberry, has had some successful stories in terms of raising funds for musicians. Some of the recent projects include the Vinyl Records raising funds for their music video 'Whims', Kanishk Seth's crowdfunded animated music video, Mame Khan's debut album, Vasuda Sharma's 'Stay Attuned', Parvaaz's debut album 'Baran' and Sandunes' music video.

Wishberry has a community of 9,000 plus funders across more than 50 countries and a campaign success rate of 75 per cent. Creative projects account for 70 per cent of funds raised on Wishberry so far, of which, music and film alone account for 50 per cent.

In an interaction with Radioandmusic.com, Wishberry's COO and co-founder Anshulika Dubey shares her plans for Wishberry.

Wishberry is gaining more popularity amongst musicians, how much has it helped Wishberry to grow?

What is interesting is that we have never paid a penny for PR because crowdfunding sells itself. When someone is crowdfunding using a platform, they automatically drives traffic to their campaign page and in turn, it gets the platform some attention. And, that is what happened--our first two successful music projects - Vasuda Sharma and Aazin Printer's music albums - reached the music fraternity and they went all out marketing their campaign. That gave us a lot of visibility. After that, we have done almost 100 music projects.

How much have musicians raised in the last two years through your platform?

So far, we have had about 25 music projects (albums, singles, and videos), and have raised close to 27 lakhs.

If any project is not able to reach its target, how do you help?

We have a very strong consulting team that coaches musicians on how to market their campaigns, unlike other platforms that are more ‘do it yourself’ in approach. Each musician goes through 15-30 days of preparation before the campaign launches where he or she is prepared with the marketing plan. Because of this heavy handholding, we have a success rate of 75 per cent. If someone still does not meet their target, well, nothing much can be done. Mostly the reasons for not meeting targets have been a musician's reputation and low level of engagement with fans. You cannot be mute for a whole year and then suddenly start asking fans to fund you. Ideally, crowdfunding preparation should start even before a musician lands on Wishberry. And, preparation is nothing but one simple funda - "Keep your fans engaged and keep in touch!"

What are the challenges faced by Wishberry?

Mostly it is technical stuff - bank payment gateways have slow connections that bounce back contributions, or sometimes just the internet connectivity in the country. But, a lot has improved since we first started, two years ago.

Is there a growing competition in the crowd-funding industry?

Yes, absolutely. When we started in 2012, we were the first ones to bring crowdfunding to the arts sector in India. There are a few others that focus on many other genres apart from art, such as technology or the social sector. But, we cater exclusively to the arts and culture sector in India. 

How many musicians do you plan to attract this year and what is your business target?

Our target is to get at least 200-300 music projects for this year. In terms of business targets, we hope to double our numbers in the music sector.

Will there be any change in consulting fee or commission per cent anytime soon?

Our consulting fee of Rs 2,500 will remain the same and we do not plan to decrease it, especially because our consulting prepares a campaign for 75 per cent success rate. As for the 10 per cent commission, let me first give you a break-up. Out of this 10 per cent, 7 per cent is Wishberry commission and 3 per cent is the payment gateway fee. As our total funds raised increase, we will definitely see a decrease in both these percentages. As of now, we are offering competitive rates. 

Overall, how much have you grown?

We have doubled our revenues since we started. It has been an encouraging start.

Last year, Wishberry raised Rs 4 crores, do you plan to invite any more investors this financial year?

No, we are not planning to raise any further investment in the near future. 

Are you partnering or promoting your platform along with any other medium?

Yes, we do share our projects with music magazines, and even Pepsi MTV Indies. And, they have helped us cross promote some good projects coming out of Wishberry. 

What are your plans for the coming financial year?

The focus is on hiring a good team and to grow the company to at least fifteen people by the end of this year. We hope to have at least 500-1000 projects this year, as well.