While I do not claim to be wildly successful in my first Kickstarter campaign for a sci-fi short film called Monitor Gray, we did raise $9500 with a goal of $7500, 50% of which was contributed in the first 24 hours.
I conducted a decent amount of research ahead of time, learning a great deal from the success and mistakes of those before me. In summary, there are a few must-dos to make Kickstarter a success:
- Build a pre-launch website which mimics the Kickstarter site, including your video, story, and contribution rewards. Spend a month asking your friends, family, and co-workers for their honest feedback and adjust accordingly.
- Build momentum BEFORE you launch, getting people jazzed for 3, 4, even 6 weeks ahead of time using Facebook, Twitter, and email (my preferred medium).
- Have at least 50% of your funds aligned before you go live. If you do not have this, you run the risk of failure. Of course, this is more possible for campaigns striving for smaller amounts (<=$50,000) than for those trying to raise hundreds of thousands of dollars which will build upon the viral effect in multiple social media avenues.
- Post updates frequently. Make them about the project with a personal flair.
- Thank each contributor, and build personal relationships with those who have contributed larger sums with hope that they know others who are also affluent for your campaign.
The basis for my summary is as follows …
Kickstarter’s own Kickstarter School gives a detailed, proven means of diving in.
What NOT to do at Kickstarter (in addition to many, many success stories, updated regularly)
- Target too many niches
- Launch in a hurry
- Not make a video perfect
- Not have the media ready BEFORE launch
- Anticipate how people will perceive the funding amount
- Pick your goal.
- Pick your tiers.
- Pick your timeframe.
- Make a great first impression.
- Plan your campaign before you launch.
- Be responsive to backers.
- Stoke the fire.
- Expect surprise backers & non-backers.
- Try to get on the Kickstarter homepage or weekly email.
- Sprint to the finish.
- Thank your backers.
A story of traffic generation which lead to monetary creation.
And the Wiki HOWTO Be Successful on Kickstarter
Hope this helps!