So you’ve thought up your product and have some plans drawn up on how to make it, but you don’t know yet where the money is going to come from. Luckily, the way has already been paved for you! Ever since their launch in 2009, Kickstarter campaigns have been adopted by small business owners, entrepreneurs, and visionaries all across the globe. A great way to raise awareness, acquire funding, and generate an audience for your product, Kickstarters are especially helpful because you can test drive the market and hear opinions from donors before your project goes into its final stages of development. Time and time again however, Kickstarter newcomers make the same mistakes that spell the end for campaigns each time. We strive for your project’s success, so we decided to create a list of 4 Kickstarter mistakes you should avoid.
- Poor Project Management
- Poor Handling of Finances
- Addressing Fans and Donors as a Crowd
- Only Asking Once
We want to address this first because just like poor product development, poor project management can affect so many different areas of your crowdfunding project. From poor planning regarding when to launch to outreach with your friends and family beforehand, Kickstarter project management should always be the first thing on your mind each day before, during, and after your campaign if you wish to be successful. Ask yourself these questions each day:
Does your description explain why people should donate and how it will serve the community?
How many social media portals will you have launched beforehand and what are each of their functions?
How and when will each phase of your marketing efforts affect the production of your project?
What is the reason that people should be excited about your project during its initial launch and how will you keep those donors interested in further developments?
Poor Kickstarter project management plans can send a good idea to its shallow grave before it even had the chance to make an impact. Don’t let that project be yours; instead use this as a vehicle to kickstart your project’s success.
Poor handling of your money can be just as bad for your Kickstarter as poor project management. In fact, it can be worse if you make your entire goal solely to raise money and neglect the advantages available to you. Remember, your Kickstarter is not just a fundraising campaign; it is a crowdfunding campaign. Think of it as a vehicle not just for monetary gains, but also for awareness, market testing, and networking possibilities. The worst part is there are so many ways to be led astray by the money in your Kickstarter! You could ask for the wrong amount of money in the beginning, not realizing how much or how little you really need to make it a success. You might focus on raising the money for your Kickstarter too intensely and end up ignoring your chance to connect with your network for stronger and more effective partnerships. Or, you might miss your opportunity to fund other projects that could expand your base of donors exponentially with just a couple dollars. While the goal here is to raise money, do not let the other facets of your Kickstarter campaign fall to the wayside. Be sure to check out our Ebook for more information on raising money for your project.
Yes, it is a crowdfunding campaign, but nobody wants to feel like they are part of a group. If someone recently donated $100 to your campaign, then they want to be treated as such. In addition, if someone donated $1 to your campaign, they still took the time out of their schedule to donate that money towards your campaign, so treat them as an individual. Each one of these people have specific interests that made them donate to your project so tailor an email towards those interests. A personalized email can be the tipping point between a recurring donor when you need the money, and someone who doesn’t care for your project’s outcome at all.
Sadly, not everyone is as interested and focused on your Kickstarter project as you are. For you, it might be the first thing you think about when you wake up in the morning but for someone else, it’s one of several post it notes on their desk. It doesn’t hurt to be a bit pushy with your campaign. Get the word out! Give your project a way for people to interact with it to build awareness. Keep pushing for that donor who said they would donate to the project weeks ago. With a Kickstarter project, being shy is the enemy.
At Pivot, we’re here for you whether you’re just brainstorming a new idea or are already raising money and getting ready to produce your product. We love to help from start to finish with new inventions, so please be sure to contact us if you have any questions.