Crowdfunding your Meadery, Part 5: Golden Coast Mead

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This is a continuation of our Crowdfunding your Meadery series, examining the funding tiers of successful mead Kickstarter projects to identify commonality between funding levels and determine what items are most likely to be purchased by a project’s backers. For a list of articles in this series, see the first article here. In this article, we will examine the Golden Coast Mead Kickstarter project, which can be found here.

GCM_WEBlogoGolden Coast Mead, started by three young entrepreneurs, Frank Golbeck, Joe Colangelo, and Praveen Ramineni, began in 2010 by leasing equipment and borrowing space to create 70 gallon batches one at a time. Their ingredients are locally sourced using orange blossom honey and water from Palomar Mountain Spring in San Diego. In May of 2012, they had realized the demand for their mead was greater than they could meet through their production space, and the three began their Kickstarter project.

Golden Coast sought $19,906 to purchase the necessary meadery equipment to move into their own brewing space. This included one bond for a winemaking license, two 150 gallon fermenting tanks, three 300 gallon flex tanks, one 300 gallon bright tank, eight hoses, one pump, one compressor, and a used forklift. The funding tier options included 11 separate funding tiers, starting at $1 for a mention on twitter to their 6,000-plus followers, up to $5,000 to have a bottled named and label designed in the backers honor.

During the course of the 60 day project, Golden Coast Mead received $20,471 from 172 backers, beating the funding goal by 3%. Details concerning the funding tiers, number of backers who supported the funding tiers, and the total amount of funding per funding tier can be found in the figures below.

Raw data of Golden Coast Mead’s Kickstarter project.
Raw data of Golden Coast Mead’s Kickstarter project.
Analysis of the backers and total funding received per funding tier for Golden Coast Mead’s Kickstarter project.
Analysis of the backers and total funding received per funding tier for Golden Coast Mead’s Kickstarter project.

Three of the Golden Coast funding tiers garnered support from more than 30 backers each (tiers 4 through 6). These funding levels, inclusive of the funding tiers less expensive than them, included a founder sticker and t-shirt for $25, founder pint glass for $50, and a 12 ounce jar of Golden Coast’s honey for $100. However, despite constituting the most popular items, combined these three options only accounted for 33% of the total funding received from the project.

Funding tier 7, priced at $500 for a permanent founder’s plaque, an invitation to the launch party, and a free tour and mead tasting, provided the most funding to the completed project, totaling $6,000 of support from 12 backers. Funding tier 8, including the backer’s name on a cask to be opened at a local gastropub received $4,000 from 4 backers. Funding tier 9, which included the backer’s name and portrait on one of the six production tanks financed through the Kickstarter project, received $2,700 from 2 backers.

Golden Coast Mead’s Kickstarter project provides valuable insight concerning the most popular funding items (stickers, t-shirts, pint glasses and honey), but they still received the largest amount of funding from a smaller number of backers willing to provide a larger sum of money for a more exclusive reward.

Have we identified a trend here? Does a successful project result in large numbers of backers purchasing low priced items, spreading the word about the project to the catch the eye of the high rolling backers who are mostly interested in the exclusive, high priced items? Check back later in the week to find out as we continue our Crowdfunding your Meadery series, examining Leaky Roof Meadery’s Kickstarter project, which can be found here.

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