The Betabrand business model has always intrigued me. Essentially, they crowdsource ideas and designs for clothes (like purple disco pants) and depending on the reception it might get developed into prototype. Crowdfunding kicks off to support the prototype and get it produced at a greater scale for their catalog.
First of all, this creates exclusivity. If 50 purple disco pants are created and 100 people are craving them, 50 people are going to miss out until the next batch.
Secondly, this model is a solution to idea cannibalization (everyone has great ideas but nothing comes to fruition as they eat each other). It’s a bootstrapped solution that ensures a niche buyer market, as niche as it may be.
After witnessing the recent Flappy Bird drama, I wondered how this model might fare in the game dev sphere.
I found GamesBeat covered the two video-game-only crowdfunding articles listed on Wikipedia; Gambitious and GamesPlanet Lab. These features are both from 2012 so I checked each platform to see if their current model has incorporated crowdsourcing design and/or development. Gambitious remains as a crowdfunding platform tailored to game publishers, while GP Lab seems to have adopted crowdsourcing elements, but right now it’s in Beta, with only two games on their Beta page. They’re using Ulule as the crowdfunding platform and while it seems like their Beta Lab page is progressing, the current state should not be live if 90% of the links are redirecting and only two games are in their system. It looks promising – maybe the closest thing to a Betabrand development model yet, but we can’t make any judgments with it’s current state.
Read the full article here: http://bit.ly/VentureBeatBeta
Jesse Aaron is a Community Writer for VentureBeat
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