The End Of Politicians

By Brett Hennig

It's time for a real democracy

Wednesday, 4 May 2016

The End of Politicians is funded! (And the statistics of a crowdfunding campaign)

The End of Politicians is now fully funded! There's champagne chilling in my fridge, and tomorrow I'll continue double-checking all my references and tweaking a few last paragraphs of the manuscript.

Then it will be time to hand over the manuscript to the Unbound editorial and design team. I wonder what cover they will come up with? I wonder what changes the editor will recommend? I wonder when the publication date will be and what it'll feel like to be a published author of what I hope is a fantastic and inspiring book.

Which will only exist because of your support. So thanks again to you.

The rest of this post gives you a sneak peak behind the scenes at my campaign. Because I must admit, as someone with a background in mathematics and a broad streak of geek in me, that I have stared long and hard and repeatedly at the author "dashboard" for The End of Politicians. What does it all mean? Is there a pattern? For those of you interested in such matters I thought I'd share with you some graphs and statistics and my thoughts about them.

This is what the main graph on the dashboard looks like today:

It shows the percentage funded (red line) and the number of pledges every day (green boxes), of which my best day was 10 pledges near the start. The grey line is how many people visited the main page (my best day was 88 visits, also near the start). From this I can see that:

  • it took me half a week to get to 20%,
  • it took me another week to get to 40%,
  • and another two weeks to get to 60%,
  • and three more weeks to get to 80%,
  • but only one final week to get to 100%.

So things started off with a bang, then slowed down, then finished impressively. Perhaps the reasons are obvious: at the start friends and family jumped in and threw pledges at me (thanks!) to help kick the campaign off. As they trailed off my efforts become far more important - emailing lists of colleagues, activist groups, blogging on various websites. If I eased up for a few days everything slowed down (obviously!). The trip with friends to Wales that I took around April 7-10 was punctuated only by one of my three biggest pledges - that was a welcome surprise that I enjoyed celebrating.

What else? I started looking at the country and gender of the people I knew (or could guess) and came up with a graph showing how many men and women pledged from which countries:

There is one very important caveat to this chart: it is only for the people I know. So it is obviously biased towards where I have friends and family, which is biased around where I have lived in my life (Australian born, married to an Italian, and have lived in Italy, the UK, the Netherlands and Hungary). But even so - GO AUSSIE WOMEN!!

The last chart was me trying to work out if any day was the best day to email and hassle (plead with?) people:

Saturday is obviously a bad day to ask for a pledge. And perhaps Tuesday and Sunday. Although perhaps this just shows my preference for promotion - I spend my weekends with my kids and try not to open my emails. Monday and Tuesday I'm catching up and Wednesday onwards I'm busy promoting.

The last fact is something that appears again and again in nearly all networks: there is much "influence" concentrated in the few and a "long tail" of many others. In this campaign it manifested itself in the fact that 20 large pledges covered almost exactly 50% of the funding with 120 smaller pledges covering the other 50%. Those 20 are obviously very important - but without everyone else I still wouldn't be where I am at today: fully funded! So again, thank you to all and everyone who pledged.

I hope this has been interesting. It’s certainly been quite a journey for me.

And of course I have to finish with a final plug - people can still pledge and pre-order the book. Don't stop telling people about it if you get the chance. Once it is published there will be another big publicity push from me.




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