Launching any product whether with crowdfunding or without is a massive task so firstly I would like to say how pleased I am that you found this ebook. I believe that the information in this little ebook is going to put you in a position of strength when it comes to launching your campaign.
Quick intro before we get started. I started my own marketing consultancy business many moons ago and in 2012 I decided to dedicate all my spare time to writing 9 books, including ‘Make Facebook Work for your Business’ which hit the Amazon Best Seller list along with 3 others. I have been lucky to supplement my income with generous monthly loyalty payments ever since.
I succeeded not because I am a literary genius but because I saw a need in the market. I myself needed to find out all about Social Media Marketing and knew that if I needed to then a million and one other people needed to too! I was absolutely fascinated by the subject and literally immersed myself finding out absolutely how to make social media work for business. In 2014 I published 9 books and haven’t looked back since.
I hope that you will find the information useful and as a result of reading this, you are going to be able to cut through the clutter and overwhelm, be able to plan an amazing campaign and launch with success. Most of the principles and strategies can be adopted for any launch. After all, a launch is a launch and with or without crowdfunding there are a set of principles and strategies that are common to all launches and all need to be meticulously planned. This principles and plan can be used for any launch or Kickstarter or Indiegogo campaign but for ease and to avoid long-windedness I will just refer to Kickstarter.
The idea of actually creating a new product and building a business is exciting for any entrepreneurial mind but the prospect of being skyrocket your product launch with the help of sites like Kickstarter is nothing less than thrilling.
What is crowdfunding exactly?
Crowdfunding is the practice of funding a project or venture by raising monetary contributions from a large number of people. In 2015, it was estimated that worldwide over US$34 billion was raised this way. The most common type of crowdfunding fundraising is using sites like Kickstarter and Indiegogo variety, where donations are sought in return for special rewards. Rewards vary for every product, from early bird discounts to a chance to be involved in designing the product or service.
Success or Failure?
Kickstarter and Indiegogo have helped hundreds of entrepreneurs bring their ideas to life and there are literally over 1000,000 successfully funded projects to date on Kickstarter. Approximately 44% are successfully funded but on the flip side that leaves 56% that, unfortunately, fail to get funded. So even though there’s a huge number that succeeds, there are still more campaigns that fail. Failing is a real risk on Kickstarter and a great number of failures are down to the fact that there are still so many people that believe that they can just upload their campaign to Kickstarter and it is going to miraculously go viral. This couldn’t be further than the truth.
There is absolutely no doubt that Kickstarter and Indiegogo are amazing sites to launch your new product. The advantage of launching on Kickstarter as opposed to just launching on your own is that Kickstarter has a loyal following of supporters and backers. If you have a good idea and Kickstarter’s sees through their algorithm that your campaign is proving popular on its own, this is when they are going to start pushing your product to their followers with their Emails and updates. This is when things start to get interesting!
If you succeed in getting the funding you will find your backers very loyal and they will often back your next project too. So the good news is that with a good idea and execution of a good marketing plan and launch succeeding on Kickstarter is a real possibility.
In this little ebook, I hope I am going to unlock the secrets to creating a really good campaigning and reaching your funding goals on Kickstarter.
Let’s Get Started!
Pre-Launch – 3 – 6 months before launch
Pre Launch – one month before
Pre-launch – 7-12 Days before launch
PRE LAUNCH 3- 6 Months Before Launch
1. The Right Idea
Ideas are two a penny, the key to success is producing something that people will want to buy. The best way to do this is to produce something that is going to solve a problem and then be able to communicate that solution to your target audience with ease and inspiration.
Ideas come about in many different ways. An entrepreneur may identify their own problem that needs solving and then realise that there are enough people to make their idea into a business. Another entrepreneur may look to a certain market and identify what it needs. Once you have your idea, check to see if it has been done before? If it has been done before, then what is going to be unique about your product?
2. Test your Idea
Not every good idea is successful, and not every successful idea is good. You’ll never really know whether your idea is going to take off unless you test it. You then may find out that people want it but the cost of producing it may be higher than people are willing to pay or you may find it’s too expensive to ship.
Launching a Kickstarter takes time and dedication. Before you put in that dedication you need to be sure your idea is feasible Once you have tested and are more sure you have the demand for your idea then you will be able to plan your launch with strength and conviction.
3. Identify your Target Audience
Once you have decided you have a great idea you need to identify who are your target audience. Who’s problem are you solving with your product? Make it your mission to find out everything about your target audience. What is their gender, age, income, education, what makes them tick?. What do they love? What are their hopes and aspirations? Where do they hang out on social media? You can download a target audience worksheet here.
Once you have this information you will know exactly where to find them be able to successfully market your product to them. You will be able to plan your Kickstarter rewards as well.
4. Product Creation & Pricing
Make sure you know how and who is going to produce your product, how long is it going to take? Do you have a backup plan should anything go wrong. Meticulously work out all your costs including shipping which is a major consideration. Things are always more expensive than you anticipate. There would be nothing worse than having a successful campaign only to realise you actually didn’t make any money at the end of it. Don’t forget Kickstarter take 5% and their payment processor takes approximately 3%.
5. Get Ready to Plan
The most successful Kickstarter campaigns might look simple, but they are meticulously planned. Once your campaign starts that’s it, the clock is ticking and you can’t afford to waste a second! You need to be absolutely prepared and know exactly what you are are going to do in the weeks/days ahead. In order to tap into that Kickstarter algorithm then you need to be successful from day one and that means you need to be driving a ton of traffic to your campaign from day one.
6. Set the Launch Date
Start planning and building your audience and building a relationship 4 – 6 months before your launch. Your launch date is important. Crowdfunding isn’t seasonal but your product may be. For example, could your product be a good Christmas present and If so you need to work out the best time so you can get your product out before Christmas. Remember after your Kickstarter campaign closes it will be at least 3 weeks before you get your money!
7. Research Similar Campaigns
Luckily all campaigns on Kickstarter, past and present, stay on Kickstarter. There’s heaps of information about successful and unsuccessful campaigns on the project pages. Start studying them and see what they are doing on their campaign page, how are they visually promoting their products, which videos are the most effective? What rewards are they offering? Block out time to do this research, I can assure you, you won’t regret it. This information is like gold!
8. Set your Funding Goal
With Kickstarter, you will have to set a funding goal. Remember if you do not reach your goal you don’t get any of the pledges. Make sure your funding goal is obviously high enough that you are going to be able to bring your product to market but low enough to be achievable. The key to a successful campaign is to present yourself as successful as possible, the earlier you can hit your funding goal the better. People like to back successful projects so if you can hit your target early then more and more people will support your project. If you smash your goal in 24 or 48 hours then that’s a news story, plus if Kickstarter see your project taking off they are more than likely to feature it in their ‘Projects we love’. Don’t forget Kickstarter is out to make money so if they see a successful project they are going to want to back it.
9. Plan your Rewards
Rewards are a big part of any successful Kickstarter campaign. Backers want to feel they are involved and really helping a project they love. They really need to be rewarded. Remember WITHOUT their support you won’t be able to do anything. Nurture them!
10. Branding is important
You need to create a clear brand for your product and yourself so be genuine and authentic in your branding. Your brand is more than a logo, your brand is your promise to your backers. It tells them what they can expect from your products and services, and it separates your offering from your competitor’s. The foundation of your brand is your logo. Make sure you involve a designer to help you design and communicate your brand. Your website, packaging and promotional materials should all communicate your brand. Once your brand and logo are created you will find you have a solid basis for all your visuals and graphics.
11. Create your Graphics
Most people are visually wired so good images are essential. You can do this yourself with lightboxes and there are numerous photo editing apps available. If you do it yourself make sure you ask a trusted friend, business colleague or relative for an honest opinion. You need to get this right so to ensure your pictures really pop it’s a good idea to use the professional photographer.
12. Start Building your crowd and your Email list
On the first day of your campaign, you want to be driving as much traffic as possible to your campaign to bring it alive. Remember success breeds success, as soon as people see you crushing your funding goals momentum will build.
There are still many people going on Kickstarter who think they can upload their amazing idea and miraculously thousands of people are going to see it. Well, this just doesn’t happen To be successful you need to build an audience and a relationship with your subscribers. The easiest way to do this is through social media and email. Email is still the most effective digital marketing channel.
To be successful you need to focus on building your crowd and a highly responsive email list and you need to be building this list at least 60- 90 days before the start of your campaign. This will give you the momentum required to kick-start your Kickstarter. Imagine on the first day of your campaign you have a whole list of people that you can send an email to announcing your project. Now imagine if you don’t !!!!! Get the picture. All that hard work and suddenly day one of your campaign and crickets! You’re literally scrambling for interested parties. Panic sets in and you realise it’s just too late and you have missed your opportunity. Don’t let this happen. Start building your list early on.
You need to first set up an account with and email service provider, for example, MailChimp or Aweber. You now need to find a way to get your audience to volunteer their email addresses. The most effective way of doing this is to offer them something of real value. Once you know your target audience, finding an idea should be fairly straightforward. It could be an information product, a short video course, an ebook or a ‘money off’ voucher. But whatever it is it needs to be good enough for your ideal customer to hand over their email.
13. Create an Autoresponder
Now it’s time to start building a relationship through your emails and updates. You need to make a connection with your subscribers by delivering emails that they are compelled to open and read. To do this you will need to create an autoresponder within your mail account and you can start sending out your series of updates and news.
14. Create a Pre- Launch landing Page
In the pre-launch stage of your campaign, you need to create interest and build anticipation for your product. With a landing page, you can offer visitors the opportunity to sign up so that they can be the first to be informed about the product you are launching. You can let your backers know that, by being first, they will get the best deal. Make sure you also offer an incentive for them to sign up this could be in the form of a free ebook.
There are numerous Landing page options including, leadpages, unbounce and instapages to name but a few. There are also sites like Krowdster and Launchrock that let you build pages for free. Launcheffect is a free WordPress theme that lets you collect subscribers with a form and then share it with your friends. However, after much searching, I found Squarespace was the best option as it allows you integrate with Mailchimp (Email service provider) and create a thank you page where subscribers can share it with their friends on social media.
Here are the key elements that a landing page should have:
The headline – The headline needs to be clear and simple, attention-grabbing.
Detail – it’s important to have some supporting detail not too much.
The Reason – You need to give them a compelling reason to sign up
Design – You need a great image or images. Keep Copy to the absolute minimum and let your brand shine through.
Shareability- Make sure your landing page sends them to a thank you page once they have given their email you can give them the opportunity to share the offer on social media. It’s also a good idea to offer an incentive to share.
15. Create your Social Media Profiles
Social media is an essential part of any successful crowdfunding campaign. Create your social media profiles and develop your posting strategy, you need to focus reaching your new audience by creating shareable content. You have three main goals with Social Media;
- Build your Audience
- Drive Traffic to your Landing Page
- Create awareness of your product
Choose which social platforms you are going to focus them
Where does your target audience hang out?
Where is it easiest to communicate with them?
Where do you have the most followers?
For most crowdfunding campaigns Facebook and Twitter are the most popular however other platforms like Instagram, Pinterest and Linkedin can be effective particularly if you have a good audience there already.
Create a Facebook Page for your campaign
Make sure you create a Facebook page for your Kickstarter and start creating buzz for your project. This is where you can deliver your story, share updates, sneak peaks and behind the scenes content.When your Kickstarter is live you can deliver updates and news about the milestones you have reached. You can create a call to action on your Facebook cover and then direct it to your landing page! You need a page to advertise and this will be important before and during your campaign.
Create your Twitter Profile
Even if you have your own personal profile, create your brand profile for your product and start tweeting your launch updates. Add a link in your profile to your landing page so people can pre-register. If you have a personal profile on Twitter you can retweet your brand profile updates.
Create a unique hashtag # for your campaign
This will help you to promote your brand and you will be able to monitor conversations on social media.
Create a Pinterest Profile
Google heavily index Pinterest pages so it’s worth setting up a profile and uploading images and links to your content.
Post to other platforms
There is no harm in setting up profiles on your ‘less important social platforms and it’s important to take your brand name before someone else does. Make sure you use something like Buffer or Hootsuite to share on these platforms so you save time.
16. Create a Blog and Start Blogging
Creating content for your target audience is a great way to promote yourself and build a community. Make sure you have an email sign box up or pop up on your blog so you can collect email addresses and then start communicating. If you do not already have an audience on social media then you will need to advertise. Facebook, Instagram and Google are great platforms to use. Read my free ebook (Double Your Traffic book www.alexstearn.com)
17. Develop a Social Media Posting Strategy
Keep your audience engaged with compelling content. You can post sneak peaks of your new product and news concerning the development of your product. Backers love to get the insider info so keep it coming with sneak peaks and other updates. Also, post links to your blog posts and relatable content.
18. Guest Posting
Every time you guest post on another blog, you’ll be reaching new people who haven’t visited your website or blog. The more often you guest post, the more people you’ll reach. This exposes your brand to more of your target audience, creating awareness and generating buzz about your products and services.
19. Run a contest & Hope it goes viral!
Running a contest is another great way to collect emails. You could incorporate your contest with your offer or create a stand-alone contest. Make run your contest at least a month or even 2 before your launch. There are many apps that help you to administer contests, including, Heyo, Wishpond, Rafflecopter and Gleam to name but a few. The best contests are those that offer an incentive for entrants to share the contest with their friends.
20. Create a snip.ly account
Snip.ly allows you to share other people’s content while at the same time promoting your own. You simply set up your account with your brand photo, then add your promotional message and a link to your landing page. You then add the links to the content you want to share and snip.ly gives you the link to post with your message and brand which you can then share on social media accounts ( genius!)
Advertising One of the most effective ways of building an audience is to advertise and Facebook advertising is probably one of the most popular platforms to use for many Kickstarter campaigns. The reason is, you can target accurately who you want to see your ads so once you have figured out who your audience is there is no better place to find them than on Facebook.
With Facebook advertising, you can put their pixel on your website which allows you can retarget people who have already visited your website with your adverts. You can also create custom audiences and track the behaviour and conversions of visitors arriving at your site from your Facebook ads. You can use Facebook Ads to build your audience prior to your launch to capture emails and then to drive traffic to your campaign page once it is launched.
Adding the pixel is very straightforward. You will need a Facebook page and a Facebook adverts account. Facebook will then provide you with a piece of code ( pixel ) who you copy and embed in your site. How you do this will depend on your website You can use Facebook Ads to build your audience prior to your launch to capture emails and then to drive traffic to your campaign page once it is launched. Be mindful of other Facebook advertising campaigns and see what think works and doesn’t.
22. Plan your Pre-Launch
In the lead up to your campaign (about 5- 12 days before), you need to run a promotion to promote likeability and trust and prove your expertise and authority in the topic relating to your product. You can do this by creating a series of powerful content that should be delivered in the days leading up to your launch. This could be video training over a few days or a mini-course. In these emails, you should encourage feedback.
At the end of the pre-launch, you need to open your sales offer an incentive for people to take action quickly, for example, an early bird offer. This is outlined very well in a book called Launch By Jeff Walker. He takes yo step by step through a tried and tested launch formula that can be applied to any Kickstarter campaign. You need to start planning the pre-launch, creating content and emails well in advance.
23. Start Engaging & Creating interest
In the run-up to your launch, it’s a great idea to involve your audience by sparking their curiosity with questions about your product. You can ask them questions about their opinions, suggestions you’ll be able to find out about any objections they may have about your product. You can do this through through email or social media. Creating a survey or poll is a good way to encourage feedback. All of this will help build anticipation and intrigue.
24. Create your Project Page
Make sure your project page is ready to go well in advance of your launch date. Anything can happen in the run-up to your campaign, so make sure your campaign pitch is ready. Your project page is your one big chance to shine, and persuade potential backers to back you. Everything on this page needs to be highly polished with really good graphics, video, photos and excellent copy. Let’s get into what you need to do for your campaign page.
A project thumbnail that pops
If you go to the Kickstarter project listings page you will see how important it is to get this right, surprisingly you can find out a great deal from these small pictures. Your project thumbnail is key to your success and needs to tell site visitors at a glance what they are backing. It’s what others will see when your project is shared on Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr.
To make it pop, keep it simple. Don’t clutter the image, less is more so avoid using banners and extra text on your image. Negative space will make your project stand out from the crowd. Make sure you use high-resolution images, this will ensure that your image is of high quality on most devices.
An Amazing Project headline
After the image the next think visitors to the page are going to look at is your project headline. It’s worth spending some time crafting the best possible headline, this is what will grab backer’s attention. You need to concisely explain what your project is and amplify the solution to your customer’s problem. Make sure it is communicated as clearly as possible in a short, to the point and easy to remember headline. A good way to do this is with the product name and then the USP.
Example- Polish Posy – Avoid Messy Nail Polish Spills!
You could also focus on how your product stands out, here are some examples;
Example; Mark- The Best Cardholder for the Minimalist and The World’s Best TRAVEL JACKET with 15 Features || BAUBAX
Example Ori-kit. The Ultimate Small Space Kitchen Solution
Example; Mico- The world’s smallest universal travel adaptor
Example; XAWUNT – World’s First 4-Way Converting Bag
Example; Evolution Brush: 1st Ever Shave Brush To Fit on Shaving Cans
Example; COOLEST COOLER: 21st Century Cooler that’s Actually Cooler
A Short Project description
Every project has a description which appears under the thumbnail on the Kickstarter search pages and then on your campaign page itself. Your description needs to be interesting and as descriptive about your product in as few words as possible. Make sure you are talking to your target audience.
A Compelling Video
Every successful project on Kickstarter has a compelling video. It’s a great way to introduce your product and create a personal relationship connection with backers. You do not need to be an expert in video production, many successful Kickstarters have produced their own video. You don’t need fancy cameras or editing software, you can use your iPhone and iMovie if you like. Do your research and watch as many other Kickstarter videos as you can, study what makes them effective and adopt similar formulas.
Before you get started, remember Kickstarter is different from other product launches. Backers are excited about bringing new projects to life and there is a very human element to Kickstarter. People tend to back people, so make your video as personal as possible. Now start planning your content.
Video Making Tips
i. A Great Introduction
Your main goal is to get your viewer to take action and back your project. In this video, you need to make your message clear while also offering entertainment.Your video length needs to be no longer than about 1.5 and 2 mins long.
A good introduction is essential, you have less than 5 seconds to grab the viewers attention. 5 seconds doesn’t seem a long time but imagine watching one of those youtube ads! Here are a few methods to grab attention;
Ask a question (introduce a problem so you can offer a solution)
Do you find yourself……….?
You can do this by starting with a question (introduce the problem) and set your viewers up for the answer they want to hear (the solution)
Wouldn’t you love to………?
Start with a Powerful Statement
This statement could be a fact relating to the problem you are going to solve Example; 70% of Americans have trouble falling asleep
Surprise and Entertain
Purple Pillow did an amazing video. They asked the question, how do you know if your pillow is garbage and then proceeded to hack it with a chainsaw. It was amusing and left you wanting to know the rest of the story.
ii. A Really good video
You need to tell a story and keep your audience in suspense for the answer or solution at the end. Here’s what you need to incorporate:
Who are you?
What are you making?
Why should your backers be excited about your project ( Your USP)
A call to action (Ask backers for their support so you can bring your project to reality)
iii. Really Good Audio
Make sure you use a microphone. Blue Yeti microphones are a good choice.
iv. Good Lighting
Make sure your light source is behind your camera
Bring Backers Behind the scenes
You may not be able to explain everything in the title and description and video but here is where you can expand and really let potential backers know what a great idea and product you have. Introduce who you and your team are and any previous experience you have. Be very transparent and let potential backers know who you are. Trust is a big part of crowdfunding.
Make it clear what you are offering
Detail what you are planning to launch on Kickstarter and why and where the idea came from originally. What problem are you solving? What is unique about your project? Validate with testimonials about what people are saying about you. Show as much as possible, drawings, samples, prototypes.
This is all about trying to get backers to feel the excitement that you are feeling for your project. People support crowdfunding because they are drawn to a vision. Give people a reason to help. When you are launching a crowdfunding campaign, you aren’t just selling a product. You are also selling yourself, your story and the excitement of being part of a new venture.
Some people will be more interested in helping you to launch something great than actually receiving a cool product. Remember this, and focus on telling a compelling story and offering up reasons to support your venture. Tell backers why you are passionate about making this project happen, how will it change peoples lives and why it is unique. You could always create another video explaining this which is a great way to give your project a personal touch.
Offer Backers a Reward for Sharing
Many projects have found offering a reward to people for sharing is a very effective way of getting the word out. For this, you will need to link to another page where backers can share your project and then collect their email so you can send them their reward for doing so. Project Timeline: detail the planned schedule for the campaign, production and delivery Call to Action You need to close to sell. Help people by making it clear what they need to do to back your project. Close your project page with a clear call to action.
Let them know the Project Timeline
Detail the planned schedule for the campaign, production and delivery.
Add a Call to Action
You need to close to sell. Help people by making it clear what they need to do to back your project. Close your project page with a clear call to action.
Create your FAQ’s
Create a list of Frequently Asked Questions about your project
25. Plan Your Launch Email
Plan and create the launch email that you are going to send out to your list.
26. Prepare your PR Campaign for Launch
Prepare your PR campaign for you launch The best publicity you can get is free publicity and the best way to do this is to send Media outlets a press release about your launch.
The main goal of the press release should be to get more press and drive traffic to your crowdfunding campaign page. The best time to send out a press release is probably a week before your launch.
You need everything to be ready when you launch your Kickstarter. So start making your wish list of media outlets where you’d like to be featured. These can be newspapers, magazines, blogs, Youtube channels, radio and podcast shows. Find out who the contacts are Find Bloggers/ writers in your space. Do your research well beforehand, create a list of bloggers, articles and journalists and start building relationships with social media. anewstip.com is a great place to start and can help you to find journalists, news articles and tweets. Simply type in a keyword or brand and it will bring up journalists, articles and tweets relating to it.
You can also search on Twitter and Facebook for articles written about your topic and this will lead you to the journalists who write those articles BuzzSumo is an excellent tool to analyse content so you can find key influencers in your space efficient. Simply grab the URL’s of some similar Kickstarter campaign and paste them into Buzzsumo. Buzzsumo will come up with the backlinks of pages that linked to the URLs.
At this stage, it’s helpful to pull your information into a word table or excel spreadsheet.
Prepare your Press Kit
A press kit is a list of materials for the press and includes your press release, product images and fact sheets. Make sure you have all your materials ready for the press and put it is Google Drive. When ready you can add the link to your pitch email.
Creating a good press release takes longer than you think and with the other 101 things you need to do you don’t need to be hurrying it. It needs to be newsworthy and you need to find an angle. If you have writer’s block then there are services you can employ to write your releases. You can also find PR writers on Fiverr.
Start by planning your story;
- Who are you?
- What is the story behind the business
- Why is your product special ( USP)
- How are you different from the competition?
- How is your product going to help people?
- What problem will it solve?
- Why now?
Press Release Layout
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE ( DATE)
HEADLINE (ONE LINE ONLY)
Subheading: More Detail Needed
(The headline is your announcement It’s also the first thing the media will see, and the hook that will encourage them to read on (or not). So, take to create a compelling one)
City and date /embargo Your announcement will start here, lead with a strong first paragraph that states clearly what you are announcing, where, and why it is relevant to your industry. Give the reporters what they need here to understand.
The body is the meat of the announcement and your chance to elaborate on the who, what, where, and why. Write short paragraphs that give all of the key details relevant to your announcement, start with the most relevant points first. This section should be no more than 3-4 paragraphs.
Paragraph 1 – about 2 sentences of 25 words
Paragraph 2 – More detail about the story
Paragraph 3 – A quote Nearly every press release includes a quote from an expert or creator/inventor of the product, This is a great way to not only repeat your main selling points in the voice of the creator and adds interest and a personal note human touch.
Boilerplate: A so-called boilerplate is a paragraph explaining the identity of a company, what it does and who stands behind it. This is optional and helps journalists gather as much information from your press release as possible but try to keep this as short as possible
Contact: Include as many ways to contact you as possible to make it easy for journalists to reach you. Name of media contact, Title, Company Name, Contact Phone number, email, campaign URL.
Pre Launch – one month before
27. Create a Facebook Event (A month before)
Create a Facebook event for your launch Created an event on Facebook to launch the Kickstarter, invite friends to come to the URL and give. Make sure to choose an engaging photo for your main event description and add multiple photos related to the event to increase interest. You could also make a short video explaining what your event is about and upload it to the invite.
And just like photos and videos, links are a great way to offer more value as well. Click on “Invite People to Come” and invite your friends. This invitation will go into your friends’ “Event Requests.” Click the “Share” button and “Post to your Profile” and your invite will go on your wall for all to see! Share your event out on Twitter and other social networks too.
28. Make Sure Everything is Ready
Make sure everything is ready for launch. Your Project page and make sure your project is approved by Kickstarter. Create all your social media posts and adverts. Make sure it’s all ready to go. If it’s ready a month before this gives you time for any last minute additions or changes.
29. Start your Pre-Launch Advertising & Email Series
You now need to start your pre-launch advertising and direct people to your pre-launch offer. Once signed up you can send your subscribers your sequence of emails that you have already planned and created in the pre- pre-Launch Period.
7- 10 Days Before Launch
30. Send Out an Embargo Press Release
A news embargo or press embargo is a request by a source that the information or news provided by that source not be published until a certain date. This is great for warming the press up, It gives journalists an opportunity to prepare their story and also creates buzz too. Instead of writing for immediate release at the beginning of the press release write Embargoes until (Launch date)
31. Set Up Your Thunderclap/Headtalker Campaign
Thunderclap is a platform that helps people be heard by saying something together. It allows a single message to be mass-shared, flash mob-style, so it rises above the noise of your social networks.
Make sure you set this up well in advance as it will take a few days for approval. This will allow you to send out a social media message about your campaign on your launch day to over 100,000 people.
A user invites their followers to support his/her Thunderclap, which includes a link to their Kickstarter. Those who agree authorise Thunderclap to tweet from their accounts in the event that the support and others rise to a pre-set threshold. The campaign results in an explosion of simultaneous tweets.
32. Create a Subdomain or bit.ly Link
If you own your own web domain name, there’s a very easy way to make a memorable URL for your Kickstarter project. People are more likely to go to a clean, pronounceable URL than to a series of numbers and random letters.
Set up a subdomain that redirects to your Kickstarter page. It will make it much easier for word-of-mouth sharing, too. (example: www.kickstarter.productname.com) You could also use bit.ly link to shorten your domain and make it memorable.
33. Make your Campaign Live
You will need to activate your Kickstarter campaign.
34. Email your List
Send and email out to all your subscribers announcing your campaign and let them know about your rewards and early bird offers.
35. Message your followers on Green Inbox
Greeninbox.com is a great time-saving service and lets you email all your Facebook contacts in one go. It’s not free but a really easy way of reaching all your friends and followers. If you try and send out a lot of pm’s to your Facebook friends then Facebook will pick it up as spam and stop you sending messages. You can use green inbox with Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter.
36. Send out your Press release
Send out your press release to all your contacts you have researched. You can use any of these services, Free and paid to send out your release
Free press release (Free)
1888 press release (Free)
24-7 Press Release (Free)
PR Web (Paid)
PR Newswire (Paid)
BusinessWire (paid) Ereleases.com ( paid)
37. Post on Social Media
Make sure you post when your campaign is live on all Social Media announcing your launch.
38. List your Campaign on Start Up Sites
List your sites on these start-up sites
39. Keep your Backers Updated
According to statistics campaigners who update their funders every 1 – 4 days end up doubling the funding project. Updates don’t just appear on each project page, they’re also delivered directly to backers’ inboxes.
Project updates are one of the things that make Kickstarter so attractive, backers can follow an ongoing story and the development of a project. Kickstarter also consider a project’s updates when choosing whether or not to feature it or make it a Project We Love.
40. Announce your Success Everywhere
Once you hit your goal, make sure you announce it everywhere, over social media, Facebook and Linkedin Groups, tell your email subscribers, send out press releases. Remember success breeds success!
41. Cross Promote
Cross promoting is a great way to increase your reach. Some people are totally against this and think if it as spammy. However, this can be done successfully if done thoughtfully. First, make sure you have backers, no point pitching to another campaign if you do not have any backers yourself. Find campaigns that are running alongside yours, contact them and see whether you can agree to cross-promote. Promoting other campaigns in your updates is probably the most acceptable way of cross promoting.
Kickstarter live was introduced in November 2016. It’s a great way to interact with your backers and future backers. Here are some ways you can use it;
Q & A Sessions
Boxing and Unboxing items
Feedback from Backers
43. Keep Doors Open for Late Backers
It is more likely that you are going to receive more requests to buy after your campaign is closed. Sites like try celery and www.backerkit.com allow you to start accepting pre-orders as soon as your crowdfunding campaign ends.
I really hope you found this post useful. Would love to know how you get on or ask me any questions in the comments. You can also sign up for ‘The Essential Kickstarter Launch Checklist’ here