Six Tips to Ignite Your Kickstarter Campaign in 2019
The crowdfunding industry has been growing from strength to strength in recent years, and the industry is set for a bumper year in 2019.
While its is immensely pleasing to see the explosive growth of crowdfunding, these developments have made it harder for creators to stand out in an increasingly crowded and competitive market for funding. Backers have more choice than ever, and even revolutionary new products can die prematurely if they are not seen by enough of the right people.
With this in mind, here are our tips on how succeed with your Kickstarter campaign in 2019.
1. Fall in Love with the Problem, Not the Solution
This may sound like an odd thing to say, but it’s surprising how much better your chances of success are when you sell people an emotion and not a product. The Kickstarter community wants to be sold to – they’re already at Kickstarter looking for things!
Don’t just sell them your product like it’s a commodity like Cooking Oil. Sell them an emotion, like Nike. Nike does not sell shoes (I meant, it does, but still) – Nike sells performance, turning you into ‘the best you that you can be.’
Pro Tip: You’re more likely to be a winner by appealing to a public that understands or better yet, has experienced the problem you’re trying to solve. Everyone wants to ‘sell’ you their solution, but the best projects out there convince you the problem they’re solving is one you have (or didn’t even know you had) but really want to have solved. Remember, the last mile of sales is always emotional. Talk about how your product will directly improve THEIR lives and they’ll thank you for it.
2. Walk A Mile in Your Backers’ Shoes
Think about what makes you feel good. Chances are that’s what would make your community feel good too. Never forget that a good Kickstarter project doesn’t just raise money, it builds a community around your work, and nobody wants to be part of a community that isn’t fun, friendly or at least useful. So what makes you feel good?
Being heard? Show that you understand the problem and have dedicated yourself successfully to creating THE solution. Don’t say it. Show it through your story or a great video or product walkthrough.
Appreciation? Understand that your backers are offering you 2 of the most precious commodities they have – time/attention and money. Earn it through your product, your project communication and through well-thought out rewards.
Free stuff? Everyone loves freebies, even YOU. Get in the backers’ shoes and think of everything that would put a smile on your face. Personalized emails, thank you notes and authenticity go a long way. You may not feel it sometimes, but people want to support you. They wouldn’t be on Kickstarter if they didn’t. Then again, a freebie or discount never hurt.
Pro Tip: In 2019, it’s all about a good experience. If you don’t offer it, someone else will. Treat your project like you’re on your dream date or dream job interview. Give it everything.
3. Learn from Others
Take a step back and soak it all in. You’re not the first person to consider a project on Kickstarter and you won’t be the last. So there’s a lot that you can learn by reading about other creators’ experiences with their campaigns.
There are some great resources available online where you can learn from the successes and failures of other creators, like this article from ProductHype.
Prepare Well – Campaigns are short. Don’t scramble to figure things out on the fly because you’ll have a lot going on. Pre-plan all the pieces of campaign, like customer responses, emailers to your network, social media strategy and execution, etc. so you can just focus on execution when you go live.
Pick a Reasonable Goal – Kickstarter’s funding disbursal is all or nothing. Pick your funding goal carefully to make sure that your minimum viable amount is covered, and everything on top is a bonus! Plus, nothing looks better than a campaign that smashes its funding goals.
Follow Up Regularly – People will tell you they support you, but you need to follow up. This applies double for the backers who are invested in your success – literally. Besides, the feeling of ‘momentum’ is a beautiful thing.
Pro Tip: Community psychology is constantly at play. If you look organized, professional, approachable, enthusiastic and constantly show progress, you position yourself for success. Figure out how you can best show these characteristics to ensure success!
4. We’re a Generation of Headline Readers
To give yourself the best chance of success, understand the classic marketing funnel. You need to ensure the following:
- People need to know you exist – We’re in the attention economy now. With endless distractions on multiple devices, you need to give yourself the best chance to be noticed. Even on a limited budget, you can try tapping into social media, emailers, friends and family, press releases and online community participation.
- Now that they know you exist – You need to get as many as possible to check out your project! Think about the emails you open and the ones you don’t. A catchy title helps.
- Now that you’ve brought them in, it’s all about engagement so get to the point – Once they look at your project, they should see something that hits home. Great images, a video, links to articles from credible websites that outline the problem you’re solving or lamenting how they wish someone did ‘x’. Make it easier for them to relate to you.
Pro Tip: The great Wayne Gretzky said, “You miss 100% of the shots you do not take”. We say you miss 100% of funding opportunities when you don’t think ahead and pull out every trick in the book. A little less catchy, but no less true.
5. Videos, Images, Words. Paint a Pretty Picture.
A picture is worth a thousand words. A video is worth 1000 pictures. Or 1.8 million words if you believe the McQuivey Forrester study. But that’s not the point.
Get high-resolution images or video footage and make sure they showcase your product as the hero. Hi-res images mean nothing if they’re not well taken. Here’s a fantastic guide from Fuel Made to give you some ideas!
Brush up on those copywriting skills! Call in some favours or consider a small investment if you can make that work. Think of your favorite print and video ads. They’re all likely to be characterized by something smart, funny or convey a truth that cannot be challenged. This is an art.
For the science (or at least a smidgeon of market testing), A/B test your graphics, copy and videos with your family and friends to make sure the message comes through the way you want.
Pro Tip: Be awesome. ‘Eye-catching’ projects win. You’ve seen enough Animal Planet to know extravagance works when you’re trying to woo somebody!
It’s not all about the product. It’s also about you. People might just fund you because they like you or if they feel your story connects with them. We’ve seen these numerous times before. Maybe they’re lukewarm on your product, but the journey that led you to build the product makes you someone they can trust to build the right product. Coupled with everything else we’ve talked about, your honesty and commitment might be the difference! You’re putting yourself out there, why not go all out?
Pro Tip: Be real. The truth is easier to ‘prove’ than a claim and people like putting their money on a ‘sure shot’ or a ‘dream worth chasing’.
6. Persistence Pays
Do you like people that aren’t communicative or enthusiastic about the time you’ll spend together? Not really, I’m guessing.
But you can change outcomes by showing enthusiasm, persistence and honesty. It shows you care, and people care about that. Leave no stone unturned and lean on your friends and family for support.
Steve Jobs said: “Most people don’t get those experiences because they never ask. I’ve never found anybody that didn’t want to help me if I asked them for help.”
Gary Vaynerchuk said in ‘The Thank You Economy’: “When faced with two equal choices, people often buy for no other reason than they associate one choice with someone they know.”
Guy Kawasaki suggested (I’m paraphrasing here): Be proactive and constantly exceed expectations. You’re more likely to get funding consideration when people see that you’ve made new progress everytime they see you.
Pro Tip:‘The Hustle’ doesn’t guarantee success. But it does give you a better chance. Do whatever it takes to set the right tone. Get your friends and family to support you. Get some early backers so your project page is showing traction. Reach out for support and ask to be promoted on Facebook & LinkedIn groups. The surest way to get nothing is by not trying. Don’t be that person. Sometimes the difference between success and failure is luck – but as the Roman philosopher Seneca allegedly said, “Luck Is What Happens When Preparation Meets Opportunity“.
At MorphoMFG we love working with entrepreneurs to try and bring their dream product to life.
Hopefully this article helps you make the right moves and take the right approach in bringing you one giant step closer achieving your crowdfunding dream!