Well, if you haven’t heard already, I am just over 48 hours into my third Kickstarter project. I’m ready to publish my Pandum-Opus, Pandamorphosis at long last. This is a project I’ve been working on, off and on, for over four years, several of those years quite intensely. At last I think it’s ready, and apparently other people do too.
I decided to take a gamble this time, after listening to webinars, reading articles, and masterminding several other projects for some of the other Whidbey Island creatives, and only run my campaign for 16 days. (Cutting out the deadly second/third week lull.)
Here’s some of what I learned from all these experiences, especially regarding the “crowd” from whom you are trying to get funding:
1. Be prepared. And by that I mean, don’t just start trying to make new friends in the week before your project launches. (This probably doesn’t apply if you have designed a seriously cool gizmo that everyone is going to want or are an experienced game designer. Your audience will find you and throw large bags of money in your path.)
2. Thank everyone…the same day that they pledged, if you are awake in your time zone. No matter how tiny their pledge is. Someone who doesn’t know you personally, and pledges just $1, is saying that your project is so cool, that they just wanted their name attached to it. And if you do know them and they pledge that same $1, maybe that came out of their grocery money for the week. A pledge is a pledge. Say thank you.
3. Let your friends and supporters know about it, without running them down with your cart in the supermarket. (OK, sorry, Diane…it was a blind corner, hope your foot is okay.) Ask your good friends for their opinion on your project before it launches.
4. Blog and tweet about it without being a jerk. Give them something fun, informative or entertaining in the post as well.
5. While I think it’s fair to contact other project creators if you have supported their past projects, to ask for a shout out, you should only do that if you had some back and forth conversations with them and they have some chance of remembering who you are, OR some affinity for the type of project you are doing. Don’t expect it though. And don’t be this person who sent me a message through the Kickstarter message system:
“Because you have been funded, I was wondering if you could help me fund my project on kickstarter. By sending the url to your funders.”
( I removed any identifying information about their project. really, I should report him to Kickstarter for spamming me and probably other successful projects, but he has enough trouble already. His project description was full of typos and grammatical errors.)
6. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. If your video is just you talking, no matter how cool your idea is, the video should be 2 minutes max, unless you’re George Clooney.