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Crowdfunding Rockstars: The Versalette [r]evolution
© Image: http://www.revolutionapparel.me/the-versalette/#ways
editorial

Crowdfunding Rockstars: The Versalette [r]evolution

Editor's Note: This interview with the founders of [r]evolution apparel is the latest in a series of conversations with the people behind the most successful crowdfunding campaigns. For more insights, read our previous interviews, with the teams that created Revolights and Freaker USA.

What happens when two fashion-conscious travelers see a need for change in the way the world perceives clothing? A new brand, [r]evolution apparel, which centers on the philosophy that “you can do more with less.” The brand’s first product, the Versalette, raised over $60,000, making it the most-funded fashion product in Kickstarter history. The Versalette was designed to allow minimalists and travelers (like founders Shannon Whitehead and Kristin Glenn) to live with less while supporting locally-made and 100 percent recycled fabrics.

The Versalette can be worn over 15 different ways, proving that “we can have more options with less clothes in our wardrobe,” according to Shannon and Kristin, who say they have a vision to “create clothes that are good for the world, on every level.” I asked them what they learned from their campaign that they could pass on:

Crowdsourcing.org: What was your strategy for getting the word out about your campaign?

Shannon and Kristin: Our campaign was unique because we did most of the behind-the-scenes work throughout the year and half leading up to it. We started a blog that documented the process of two young people starting a business, and we started to build a small following through that. We expanded that network by building relationships on Twitter with other bloggers and entrepreneurs. By the time we launched our campaign, we had a small tribe of people who had followed us from the idea inception and were there to help us spread the word. Throughout the campaign, we did all we could do write guest posts for other blogs, participate in interviews for print and online radio and spread the word about our mission more so than the fact that we were raising money. We sent out some press releases, but we saw the most response from people we already knew and who already believed in us.

What were your biggest challenges during the campaign?

Keeping up with the interview requests and emails. We had a short lull when there were a few days that funding slowed down, but for the most part, we didn’t have to worry about how we were going to get funded with only days to go.

What advice do you have for potential crowdfunders?

Make a great video. Having a compelling message that people can relate to. Set your rewards fairly. Start making connections before launch. Reach out to your network, no matter how small.

Here's their campaign statistics:

{r}evolution apparel: The Versalette

Goal - $20,000
Amount Raised - $64,246
Number of Supporters - 796
Quantity product pre-sold - 698

Email: info@revolutionapparel.me
www.facebook.com/revolutionapparel
Twitter: @AllofUsRev

- Diana Tsai is a crowdfunding consultant in the US, and is starting a crowdfunding platform in Shanghai focused on product design. Her company focuses on utilizing crowdfunding as a force to drive innovation and creativity in China. She is headed to Shanghai to launch as soon as she has finished her International Political Economy and Business Diplomacy degree at Georgetown University. All ideas are welcome--please contact her at paediax@gmail.com.

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