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3 Lessons from a 209% Successful Kickstarter Project

3 Lessons from a 209% Successful Kickstarter Project

Kickstarter is Awesome, But Not Miraculous

If you have a product you want to sell, Kickstarter is a great place to start. Maybe you need funds for the initial production run, or maybe you just want to test your concept – either way it’s a great platform. There are lots of posts and books about how to run a successful Kickstarter project, but after doubling our targeted goal for SnapLaces we did a few things a bit different than what others have recommended. Obviously every project is unique, but some of the principals we used should still be valuable.

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3 Simple Lessons for A Successful Kickstarter Project

  1. First and foremost, we worked our asses off. Running a campaign is more than a full time job, and even with people splitting the work there was still a lot to get done.
  2. We didn’t discount our product. Kickstarter is the one time in a products lifecycle where people might be willing to pay more just to help you out. Don’t make the mistake of discounting just to get backers. Most people underestimate what it will take to get a product to market, and even if you don’t, unexpected things can crop up.
  3. We contacted everyone that backed us. Literally everyone. Their responses to our questions ultimately led to valuable insights and shaped both the tone of our campaign and the direction of our company.

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A Successful Kickstarter Project is A LOT of Work

The amount of work a successful Kickstarter project requires is probably the biggest reason for failure. Having successfully managed a campaign and backed several others that were not successful, I can confidently state that there is a high correlation between the effort and result. The ones that didn’t interact with backers or actively engage, didn’t meet their funding goals.

We Didn’t Discount Our Product

Many Kickstarter projects offer discounts on the product being funded. We felt like that was a bad idea, especially at the under $50 price point we were in. We knew that we’d need over 1000 backers to be successful and lowering an already small price point would add to that number. More importantly the purpose of the campaign was to raise funds to pay for a new plastic injection mold, so we reasoned that backers would be preordering our product and helping us bootstrap the effort.

One thing we did do was offer a significant discount to a limit number of early backers to gain momentum. Your first week on Kickstarter is crucial because new projects are featured and people are much more likely to discover them. The “early adopter” reward allowed us to get the required momentum to become one on the top  projects on Kickstarter which led to additional backers, but the limit made sure that we weren’t sacrificing our overall funding objectives.

Communication is Key

Prior to launching we studied other successful projects and one data point stuck out. Successful projects updated an average of 1.8 times PER DAY! This is where the bulk of the work came in. In addition to sending messages to every backer and responding to their questions, we tried to post 2-3 times every day on Kickstarter, as well as maintaining an active social media presence (active as in cultivating relationships, not just carpet bombing posts) on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and Google+.

Communication is the key to success on Kickstarter.

Engage and communicate relevant information to people who have helped you (or would likely help you if only they knew you existed) is the most reliable way to have a successful Kickstarter project.

What Now?

The next project will definitely be better run and more organized, but if we can save you some time and misery by sharing than it will have been worth the time invested in reading.

As always, if you have a question or comment – just ask!

Ask Me Something

 

Help Fight Hosting Deficiency Syndrome

Help Fight Hosting Deficiency Syndrome

Help Fight HDS #thereishope

About Hosting Deficiency Syndrome

Hosting Deficiency Syndrome (HDS) is a serious problem plaguing the WordPress community. Symptoms include slow page load times, the need for caching plugins, poor security, out of date WP installations, terrible customer service, and more.

Fortunately there is hope.

The treatment for HDS is Managed WordPress hosting from www.GetFlywheel.com. Their dedicated team of hosting professionals will migrate your site for free and have your website operating better in no time.

If you, or a company you know suffers from HDS, please contact them today.

About Flywheel

Hosting Deficiency SyndromeFlywheel is an amazing WordPress hosting company based in Omaha, Nebraska (AKA The Silicon Prairie). They do an awesome job of managing WordPress hosting for design firms like us at Workshed.com. If your website is built on WordPress, check them out (Also they do free migrations, which is very, very, helpful).


CONTACT FLYWHEEL

 

About Workshed

We approach design, marketing, and websites from a business owners perspective. Sure, we love cool tech just as much as the next geek, but we know that providing solutions to real business problems is a better way to provide value.

CONTACT WORKSHED

 

Kitchen Electric Testimonial

Kitchen Electric Testimonial

Great Clients = Great Projects

Now that their site has been up and running for a few months, we asked Paul and Sara Kitchen, owners of Kitchen Electric in Washougal, WA to share their experience of having a website built by Workshed.

Thank you Paul and Sara for sharing your thoughts!
Here is a more comprehensive account of what we did for them.

50% off a Social Media Makeover

50% off a Social Media Makeover

Social Media Makeover

UPDATE: For the rest of March, we’re offering our social media makeover for 50% off!

Social media is one of the first places prospective clients are going to “meet” you and your company. What will their first impression be? Make sure your Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, and YouTube accounts (yes you should have an account on each) are sending the right message, by letting the Workshed team create a custom profile and background image for each.

Social Media Makeover

What’s it cost?

Typically we charge $500-$600 for this service, but through the end of March we’re “slashing our prices” (imagine the guy with the crazy radio voice) and offering it for $300. For those within the range of our photographer, that’s an epic deal, for the rest of you…you’ll have to settle for a great deal!

What about the free giveaway?

To enter the “Great Social Media Makeover Giveaway” is easy. Just tell us in the comments below how you currently use social media (if at all) to market your business and share this post to the social network of your choice.

Share the social media makeover

Facebook Share link for the social media makeoverShare the social media makeover on Google+Custom Share link for the social media makeoverLinkedIn Share link for the social media makeover

[clear]If you are selected we’ll contact you with the rest of the details.

For the forward thinking types who want to proceed with the social media makeover anyway (because it’s such a great deal, and you know how important it is) we’ll refund your payment if you are selected.

What’s Included?

Photography

If you are within 30 miles of our office, we’ll send Brady over with his fancy camera to take pictures! If you’ve ever had professional pictures taken, you know this is a screaming deal. If you are not within range of our visual arts master, we take what you have and work with it. If it’s rubbish, we’ll do something with graphics instead.

Facebook Page

Custom Profile Image Custom Cover Photo

Google Plus Page

Custom Profile Image Custom Cover Photo

YouTube Profile

Custom Profile Image Custom Channel Art

Twitter Profile

Custom Profile Image Custom Background Image Custom Header

LinkedIn Page

Custom Header Image Custom Standard Logo Custom Square Logo

Universal (for your other pages)

Custom Background Image Custom Profile Image

Share the social media makeover

Facebook Share link for the social media makeoverShare the social media makeover on Google+Custom Share link for the social media makeoverLinkedIn Share link for the social media makeover

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Social Media Makeover Form

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Latest Project: Telling the Story of a Business at American-Marble.com

Latest Project: Telling the Story of a Business at American-Marble.com

Telling the Story of a Business

Telling the story of a businessUnless you are a stone fabrication connoisseur, you may not realize the level of precision and craftsmanship that our client, American Marble and Granite or AMG, bring to their installations. I knew they did nice work because Evolutn Homes + Remodeling (Workshed Partner Brian is an owner) uses their services, but how they achieve their results is impressive. Our mission was simple: to create a website that reflects the quality and care you’d receive by working with American Marble and Granite.

Reflecting Quality

American Marble and Granite has been in business for over two decades. During that time, they’ve built a reputation based on precision installations using innovative technologies backed by outstanding customer service. Like many businesses, their focus was (is) on producing great work and their digital personality (website and social media) started to fall behind what  you’d  expect to see from a company of their caliber.

Telling the story of a business

This is a common story for many businesses, and it’s exactly why Workshed exists. Just having a website isn’t enough, especially if the business you are in has any competition. Most of your customers are going to check you out online before making a decision. When they do, what are they going to see? What story does your website tell?

In the case of AMG, they have an incredibly sophisticated process and set of tools that they utilize on every project. For example, a routine granite kitchen would start by being laser measured and templated. To minimize the visibility of seams, the slabs then get laid out and photographically arranged before finally getting cut by a water jet machine that has tolerances into the thousandths of an inch.
Their old website didn’t effectively convey the their expertise or capacity for innovation.

Projects We Love

This is exactly the type of project we love. Client’s that are exceptional at what they do, and busy enough to need help executing an effective marketing plan for their business. In reality, a great website is just a start; it forms the basic infrastructure that is needed to support the important stuff…content.
In addition to their website, Workshed also created or “remodeled” the AMG social media presence and customized a video intro and ending to use with a series of videos they have planned (we also found a smartphone app for editing the video and combining it with the intro and ending). One of our mantras is to make it easy for the customer to do business with you, on the web that means publishing your content anywhere your customers are so they can find it. American Marble and Granite saw the value in this, and we helped deliver their vision to the virtual world.

If you are considering having granite, marble, or quartz installed in your home you’d be crazy not to give Paul and Ellen (the owners) a call. Their staff and innovative tools allow them to do countertops that other companies simply can’t, and we haven’t even mentioned they have the largest inventory of stone in Southwest Washington.

Give them a call.