kickstarter en-US How to Create a Successful Kickstarter Campaign <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-create-a-successful-kickstarter-campaign" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="" alt="crowd" title="crowd" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="168" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Crowdfunding has rapidly become a popular way to raise money for a project. The concept is simple: you write up what you want to do, maybe make a short video about it, and post it to a site like <a href="">Kickstarter</a>. Then, hopefully, people will contribute money, and you&rsquo;ll wind up with enough to actually complete your project.</p> <p>But the reality isn&rsquo;t quite that simple. For every Kickstarter project that brings in over a million dollars, there are thousands that fail entirely. Creating a successful campaign that raises at least enough to cover your costs requires some serious work &mdash; almost as much as launching your own business. (See also: <a href="">Start a Business for Next to Nothing</a>)</p> <h2>There Is No Formula</h2> <p>There are Kickstarter campaigns that have raised over $10 million (specifically, <a href="&rdquo;">the Pebble Watch</a>) and campaigns that haven&rsquo;t managed to pull in more than $50. There is no formula you can follow to tell if a particular project is going to be successful. There are a few generalizations, though, that you should know about.</p> <p><strong>Preselling</strong></p> <p>Most successful Kickstarter programs offer incentives that backers would buy outright, given the opportunity. While a lot of backers enjoy giving money to support cool ideas, most still want to get something for their money. <a href="">Just another t-shirt</a> &mdash; unless that shirt is epically cool &mdash; isn&rsquo;t going to cut it. You have to think in terms of products that would be a direct result of your project. That&rsquo;s why hardware and movies tend to do so well.</p> <p><strong>Low Raise Points</strong></p> <p>It&rsquo;s tempting to ask for every cent you need to pull off your project, but you can actually often raise more money by asking for less. Most campaigns don&rsquo;t raise even half of what they need &mdash; but if you can get your campaign to the halfway point, your odds of getting fully funded go way up. And if you&rsquo;re already fully funded and you have some impressive incentives, don&rsquo;t be surprised if you wind up getting a lot more than what you asked for.</p> <p><strong>Marketing Offsite</strong></p> <p>If you&rsquo;re able to tap into your own networks outside of Kickstarter and get them excited, it&rsquo;s a lot easier to get the money you need. If you&rsquo;re starting from scratch, though, you need a strong marketing plan that will get people you don&rsquo;t know interested in what you&rsquo;re working on.</p> <p>Take the time to read everything about running a campaign on the Kickstarter website. There are lots of little nuts-and-bolts details, like setting up your account to properly receive payment. There are also a lot of ways you can accidentally violate Kickstarter&rsquo;s terms of service, especially if you&rsquo;re working with a non-profit.</p> <h2>Plan Your Kickstarter Campaign</h2> <p>If you&rsquo;re thinking about launching a project on Kickstarter, you&rsquo;ve probably already got an idea in mind. Tempting as it may be, you shouldn&rsquo;t just throw together a campaign and make it live. Start by writing out what your idea is:</p> <ul> <li>Why are people going to be excited about it?</li> <li>What &mdash; as specifically as you can describe &mdash; is it going to take to pull off this idea?</li> <li>Who is going to be interested enough to pay money towards this campaign?</li> <li>What incentives can you offer with this project? What products are the end result?</li> <li>What personal networks do you have that you can get involved?</li> </ul> <p>It&rsquo;s only when you know your idea inside and out that you&rsquo;ll be able to figure out how much it will cost and, therefore, how much you need to earn on Kickstarter. When setting that figure, don&rsquo;t forget that Kickstarter takes its share and that you&rsquo;ll owe taxes on what you&rsquo;ll bring in to boot.</p> <p>You&rsquo;ll also want to write out a specific marketing plan. Unless you have a website that gets a million visitors a month, plan on reaching out to as many places as you can. Go beyond just your own social networks &mdash; frankly, some groups of Facebook friends are starting to get annoyed by another one of their circle requesting money for a creative project each week. Think bigger, like sending out press releases to relevant news sites, guest posting on blogs, and even talking to people in person. Create a step-by-step plan, and then follow it.</p> <h2>Choose Your Incentives</h2> <p>Without the right perks, it&rsquo;s hard to get even the best-intentioned campaign off the ground. You have to make sure that you&rsquo;re offering incentives that people want and will actually spend money for. If you aren&rsquo;t sure if what you want to give to backers is a viable option, go ask a few people if they would want to buy your products. That&rsquo;s the most basic level of market research, and it will stand you in good stead with a Kickstarter project.</p> <p>On most campaigns, you&rsquo;ll see at least one very low level &mdash; an option to back a project for just a dollar or two. It&rsquo;s rare that such a level will represent a large percentage of your backing, but for the occasional small backer (or friend who wants to contribute but doesn&rsquo;t want to spend too much), it&rsquo;s a good idea to include such a low-level option. Don&rsquo;t be afraid to offer much more expensive: on popular campaigns, it&rsquo;s not unusual to see contributions of more than $1,000. The limit Kickstarter allows for incentive pricing is $10,000.</p> <p>Take a look at these successful Kickstarter campaigns to see what sort of options have been popular:</p> <ul> <li>Seth Godin&rsquo;s <a href="&rdquo;">The Icarus Deception</a></li> <li><a href="&rdquo;">Meet Miss Subways</a></li> <li><a href="&rdquo;">An Evening With Neil Gaiman and Amanda Palmer</a></li> </ul> <h2>Writing Your Campaign Page</h2> <p>It may seem like the campaign page itself is the easy part; you just have to describe your idea and knock together a video. But while there have been some successful projects with very basic campaign pages on Kickstarter, investing time into creating a persuasive page is crucial &mdash; and can help you page get through the Kickstarter moderation system that much faster.</p> <p>A good campaign page needs to lay out why it&rsquo;s worthwhile for your project to succeed. It needs to persuade visitors that they want what you&rsquo;re offering &mdash; preferably at a higher funding level than just a dollar or two. You can&rsquo;t always be there when someone new pulls up your campaign for the first time, so your page needs to stand on its own.</p> <p>There are several small video production companies these days that have made a specialty out of producing videos for Kickstarter projects. If you feel like you need some help, it may be worth deciding if a video is within your budget before you launch your campaign.</p> <p>Once you&rsquo;ve got all your ducks in a row, you&rsquo;ll be able to submit your campaign to Kickstarter. It may be a fair amount of work to create a successful project, but it&rsquo;s worth it if you&rsquo;re <a href="">passionate about what you&rsquo;re doing</a>.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="">Thursday Bram</a> of <a href="">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="">5 Best Cash Back Credit Cards</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="">22 Websites That Will Pay You to Write for Them</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="">8 Terrible Work-From-Home &quot;Jobs&quot; You Should Avoid</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="">12 Side Jobs for Stay-at-Home Moms and Dads</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="">8 Ways to Earn Extra Income While Christmas Shopping</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Extra Income discovering passions fundraising kickstarter Thu, 02 Aug 2012 09:48:42 +0000 Thursday Bram 947046 at