How much money are we aiming to crowdfund?

By: Amelia Cook November 29, 20180 Comments
A young girl in a princess dress receives a ring from a young man in prince clothes. They are shadow-puppets, without facial features.

Numbers, in business terms, are all about storytelling.

“We made $800 by our third month on Patreon” isn’t as meaningful or powerful as “By our third month, we could afford to pay contributing writers $50 per feature for two features a week.”

I’ve written three posts setting the scene. Now, it’s finally time to give you hard numbers, and walk you through the story they’ll tell.


Our campaign will launch at midnight on Saturday 1st December – Pacific Standard Time.

Not based in PST? Me neither. Here’s a guide to what time the campaign will launch in timezones most of our readers can use for easy reference:

Saturday 1st December

00:00 North America PST
03:00 North America EST
08:00 United Kingdom GMT (UTC)
09:00 Central Europe CET
16:00 Australia AWST
17:00 Japan JST
19:00 Australia AEDT
21:00 New Zealand NZDT

If you’re planning to make a contribution to our campaign, you can make the biggest impact by doing so as soon as we launch (or when you wake up – no need to set an alarm for 3am, east coasters!).

It’s crucial that we hit 30% of our goal in the first 24 hours. The momentum that gives a campaign increases the chances of reaching 100% – and reaching it quickly.

It’s so important, in fact, that we’re offering an incentive…

Exclusive perk for the first 24 hours only!

I’ve commissioned Teri to create two sets of designs for us, to fit two sizes of merchandise:

  1. A set of simple, cute images we can use for small items
  2. An elaborate illustration big enough to fit on a T-shirt

When we launch, we will have tiers of $10, $30, $50, $75, and $100, with a new perk added at each tier (i.e. the $100 tier gives you a unique perk to that tier plus the perk from every tier below it, the $75 tier contains every perk except the unique perk of the $100 tier, and so on).

We worked long and hard to select the most varied and rewarding combination of perks, and I can tell you now that this is already an attractive bundle.

However, for the first 24 hours ONLY we will be adding one free extra perk to every tier $10 and above: a high quality A4 art print of Teri’s elaborate illustration!

There is no quantity limit on this. Every single person who contributes $10 or above in the first 24 hours will receive this beautiful print alongside their other perks.

You just have to make your contribution of $10 or above within 24 hours of our launch – according to Indiegogo’s clock, not ours.

That means the art print will become unavailable from the following times:

Sunday 2nd December

00:00 North America PST
03:00 North America EST
08:00 United Kingdom GMT (UTC)
09:00 Central Europe CET
16:00 Australia AWST
17:00 Japan JST
19:00 Australia AEDT
21:00 New Zealand NZDT

These prints will not be a part of the campaign after this point, and they will not be available at all outside the campaign. So make sure you give yourself plenty of time to contribute, and don’t risk missing out on this exclusive perk!

Milestone 1: $6,410

I’ve said before that our raise divides roughly into thirds, in the following priority order:

  1. Creating and running the campaign
  2. Our website’s complete overhaul
  3. Transcripts for the first 75 episodes of Chatty AF

When we hit $6,410, we will have officially made enough to break even on external campaign costs!

In other words, we’ll have enough to pay the people who made our campaign videos, are producing our merchandise, and will ship our perks.

At $6,410, we know we have not lost money.

This isn’t a cause for celebration exactly, but it will inspire some welcome sighs of relief.

Milestone 2: $12,660

At $12,660, we’ll be able to pay for our website overhaul! At this point I can send a very eager message to Katy and Chris to say they’re clear to start working on the website redesign.

The sooner we reach this point, the sooner I can send the message, and the sooner we can present you with our new and improved, truly accessible

This is of course fantastic news… but we still can’t celebrate. Not yet.

Milestone 3: $17,910

At $17,910, I can pay the team to start transcriptions for all 75+ Chatty AF episodes!

This is a big project that will take time to work through. Having this money in the bank means I can clear invoices for this work as soon as I receive them, encouraging the team to chip away at it when they can.

At this point, we will have covered the expenses I started this campaign to fund, definitely cause to celebrate!

But there’s one extra step to reach our true goal…

GOAL: $19,900

While I will of course be delighted with the funds we raise up to this point, the AniFem principle is that it’s not a true success until everyone gets paid properly for their work.

I said in my last post that I would not be taking any payment for my work creating and managing this campaign until our other financial goals had been met. So I’ve worked backwards to be transparent about that through our milestones.

$19,900 is our total goal. $2,500 is the amount I calculated would be reasonable to charge, but $1,990 is the 10% commission I believe it would be fairer to take instead. That’s what I’ve deducted from Milestone 1, which will cover all other running costs for the campaign. Fair pay for my work will be the final step to reach our goal.

If our raise stops short at $17,910, our website and transcripts will be paid for – but I will have worked for free this entire time.

Worse still, I will continue to work for free as I handle all shipping and post-campaign queries.

I’ll be honest, that prospect is pretty demoralising. But I’m not worried.

AniFem’s followers have always supported our principles of paying fairly. Crafting and running a campaign like this is time-consuming and skilled work, which I’m doing to a high standard. If the campaign makes it to $17,910 then I’ve earned my 10%, and I remain confident that our community will ensure I’m paid just like anyone else would be.

At $19,900, we will have met all our commitments to improve our infrastructure and pay people fairly.

And that’s where the fun really begins.

What do you do when you reach your goal? You craft well-costed, achievable stretch goals – in AniFem’s case, to meet our community’s three most popular requests…

Stretch Goal 1: $20,500

“I just found your site, and I love it! What series would you recommend?”

This is a message we’ve received a hundred times, with some variations.

We already offer seasonal and annual recommendations for new shows, but people want straightforward, curated lists of anime and manga we vouch for as feminist fans.

When we hit $20,500, we will be able to pay members of the AniFem team to create a recommendations page for each of the following:

  • general feminist-friendly series
  • series with positive LGBTQ+ representation
  • series that are good for children or teenagers

It’s a quick and easy set of one-off tasks – to which I’ve been hesitant to allocate money from our Patreon income, as stretched by our regular and ongoing costs as it is.

Just $600 over our goal and we could have at least one of these new recommendation pages up by the end of the year.

Stretch Goal 2: $22,500

I’m particularly excited about this one, a long-term goal I assumed would be expensive and time-consuming to deliver…

At $22,500, we will be able to offer you a centralised, searchable database of all our reviews!

This database will feature a very simple traffic light system, so you can tell at a glance if we do – or don’t – recommend a series, and can click through to the review to see the full detail.

A big goal of mine is to introduce regular manga reviews in 2019. A database like this will be invaluable.

This is something we’ve been wanting to offer for years, and members of our community have been asking for it as recently as this month! Once the rest of our infrastructure up to scratch and fit for purpose, we can ask our web developer team to prioritise building this highly valued feature.

Stretch Goal 3: $25,000

At $25,000, we can set up an online shop on our website and design our first range of merchandise for sale!

When selecting merchandise for this single crowdfunding campaign, we needed a small number of items we could a) produce quickly, b) ship easily and inexpensively around the world, and c) rely on to be appealing to the most backers possible.

With a shop, we’ll be able to offer a wider range of products and price points. What’s more, we’ll be able to experiment with different types of items and designs to refine our understanding of what you like and want over the long term.

Once we have a good grasp of our customers, we can start sourcing and selling other products we believe you’ll love, making the AniFem shop your first stop for feminist-friendly anime and manga related items. (Think A Mighty Girl for anime and manga fans of all ages.)

Beyond $25,000…

So we’ve met our obligations and fulfilled our most popular community requests. What next?

After $25,000 AniFem can finally grow, in the following directions among others:


Stretch goal: Want to see AniFem on YouTube? We’ll figure out how much time and money that really costs by making a single video essay, for which everyone involved gets paid.

Result: A detailed budget per video, which we can add to our Patreon as a goal so we can start producing them regularly.

Ambition: Weekly videos covering the same kind of analysis and opinion as AniFem does through the written word now.


Stretch goal: We’ve dabbled in con attendance before, but now it’s time to get strategic. In 2019 I want to represent AniFem at two conventions: Anime Expo and Geek Girl Con.

Result: An understanding of how to leverage attendance at both anime conventions and feminist geek events to increase our base, leading to an event strategy for 2020 that goes beyond the west coast (and outside the US!).

Ambition: A regular presence at major events in English speaking countries, eventually hosting our own Anime Feminist events.


Stretch goal: To develop and sell a book of feminist essays and artwork on an iconic series/marginalised creative/feminist theme, etc. – for which everyone who works on it gets paid a fair rate.

Result: A clear understanding of the requirements, processes, and financial implications of publishing such a book, which we could use to fund further books and build a series.

Ambition: An AniFem publishing arm, sustainably developing physical and digital books on Japanese pop culture through a feminist lens, books which can be found in bookshops and libraries as well as conventions.

These examples are just some of the more inspiring, creative projects we could initiate once our website is fit for purpose and every podcast has a transcript.

There are many more ideas we’ve been sitting on, unable to justify working on them until our foundations are in order.

Some of these are less visible projects, such as auditing and overhauling our social media operations, or continuing development of our database.

Some are currently just ideas, vague but potentially transformative concepts that will become higher priority to plan properly should we raise enough money.

The point is that we’re launching this crowdfunding campaign to fix two fundamental obstacles to growth: our flawed website and lack of transcripts. Reaching our campaign goal early gives us a chance to show you how much we can accomplish without those obstacles in the way.

Campaign Success!

Meeting our goal by raising $19,900 before our campaign ends will make this campaign a success.


I always aim for more exciting and less plausible goals than is sensible. (That’s how I started AniFem in the first place!)

I don’t just want to make it to the finish line. I want to break records.

My dream is for AniFem to raise 100% of the goal, all $19,900, in our first 24 hours, then spend the rest of the month overfunding our way through stretch goal after stretch goal.

Not only would this be an enormous relief and cause to celebrate, it would also boost AniFem’s reputation. Suddenly, we’re the niche feminist website that raised $20,000 in a day.

With a label like that, we could send out press releases to major publications, approach like-minded organisations about collaboration potential, leverage the attention to increase our Patreon income.

With a track record like that, we could run other crowdfunding campaigns, for more intriguing projects than infrastructure, and feel even more confident of meeting our goals.

Now, the probability of this all happening is low… but that would just make achieving it all the more spectacular!

And if we end up somewhere between our objective goal for technical success and the improbable goal of my wildest dreams, we’ll still have exceeded the expectations of most.

Countdown to Launch

So, that’s the story of our campaign. In just two days, you can finally become a part of it.

This Saturday you can:

  • read our campaign in full
  • watch our three-minute campaign video
  • see which selections of merchandise we’re offering at each tier
  • follow my launch day blog post, which I’ll publish the minute we go live and update as we meet milestones (not that I’ll be obsessively refreshing the Indiegogo dashboard or anything)

And, don’t forget:

  • receive an exclusive, high quality art print alongside your other perks, for any contribution $10 or above!

I’m expecting a tense day… but a thrilling one. And I hope that by the end of it, you’re able to talk about that one time you helped this niche feminist website raise $20,000 in a day.

If you’re already planning to contribute, help us out by registering your support on our campaign pre-launch page now!

We Need Your Help!

We’re dedicated to paying our contributors and staff members fairly for their work—but we can’t do it alone.

You can become a patron for as little as $1 a month, and every single penny goes to the people and services that keep Anime Feminist running. Please help us pay more people to make great content!

Comments are open! Please read our comments policy before joining the conversation and contact us if you have any problems.

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