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Have you ever launched a kickstarter? How'd it go?

Ketchup

Member
Nov 5, 2017
72
I launched my first (proper) kickstarter about two weeks ago now. It got funded within 9 hours thank to a fan base i've built up over the years and last week all stretch goals were unlocked. Since then with about 20 days still to go i've added more stretch goals including giving away a free lanyard to every backer once that unlocks although the dreaded mid campaign lull is starting to show itself and i'm hoping for some advice to help combat or reduce that.



I wanted to find out who here has launched a kickstarter. How did yours go? Did it fail or succeed? What do you think happened that helped it do either of those? What did you learn from it to do better next time? Pretty much looking for any and all advice to help maximise doing a kickstarter and also to see what other Era members have created in the past so do share out your projects. Or even if you haven't made a kickstarter, what made you back one and did you get the rewards as promised?
 

BrokenMill

Member
Oct 29, 2017
162
The Netherlands
I did a Kickstarter for a boardgame, and I have another one planned for February. Got 1228 backers, so it was quite successful for a first-timer. The best way to avoid a mid-campaign lull is to simply have a shorter campaign. Two or three weeks is usually more than enough. You can also do some marketing / advertising to get a bit more out of the mid-campaign, or add a free stretch goal to get people talking about it.

The worst feeling is when a couple people in a row drop out after you post an update. I lost at least 10 backers because of a community-created card (one of the stretch goals)
It's been an amazing learning experience though, including all the after-Kickstarter things like freight shipping and fulfillment.
 

BebopCola

Member
Jul 17, 2019
378
I FOOLISHLY did one years back to try and get a small print run of my first self-published novel. I had no idea what I was doing, no idea how to market it, and no real plan. It of course crashed and burned, and I feel embarrassed that I even tried it lol
 
OP
OP
Ketchup

Ketchup

Member
Nov 5, 2017
72
I did a Kickstarter for a boardgame, and I have another one planned for February. Got 1228 backers, so it was quite successful for a first-timer. The best way to avoid a mid-campaign lull is to simply have a shorter campaign. Two or three weeks is usually more than enough. You can also do some marketing / advertising to get a bit more out of the mid-campaign, or add a free stretch goal to get people talking about it.

The worst feeling is when a couple people in a row drop out after you post an update. I lost at least 10 backers because of a community-created card (one of the stretch goals)
It's been an amazing learning experience though, including all the after-Kickstarter things like freight shipping and fulfillment.
Got a link? Can you explain further why you lost 10 backers after an update and what you'd do to avoid that in future?
 

BrokenMill

Member
Oct 29, 2017
162
The Netherlands
Got a link? Can you explain further why you lost 10 backers after an update and what you'd do to avoid that in future?
I'm not sure if self promotion is allowed here, but the name of the game is Heroes of Tenefyr.
One of my stretch goals was to create a new card for the game with the help of the backers, so that went on for about a week, with backers giving suggestions an voting on several polls. In the end, we ended up with a pretty cool creature card (a Giant Platypus) but some people felt that it didn't fit in with the rest of the game and would have preferred one of the other options, so they dropped out. It's kinda silly to drop a pledge because of one free thing, but oh well. I'm not sure if it's something you should actively try to avoid.
 

Professor Lich

Resettlement Advisor
Avenger
Oct 25, 2017
286
Did one for an indie game with some friends. It was successful but we undershot ourselves. Thankfully we had a lot of friends and family support us.

Game got finished and published too, so it all worked out!
 

Lucas M. Thomas

Editor-in-Chief of Nintendo Force Magazine
Verified
Oct 30, 2017
644
Kentucky
We ran Kickstarters to fund print production of Nintendo Force Magazine in 2014 and 2015, and both went really well. Don’t go wild with stretch goals, piling more and more work on yourself. Set a final one to shoot for and let that be it.
 

StarCreator

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,814
I'm not sure if self promotion is allowed here, but the name of the game is Heroes of Tenefyr.
One of my stretch goals was to create a new card for the game with the help of the backers, so that went on for about a week, with backers giving suggestions an voting on several polls. In the end, we ended up with a pretty cool creature card (a Giant Platypus) but some people felt that it didn't fit in with the rest of the game and would have preferred one of the other options, so they dropped out. It's kinda silly to drop a pledge because of one free thing, but oh well. I'm not sure if it's something you should actively try to avoid.
Wait, did this card get created while the campaign was still ongoing?
 

ZackieChan

Member
Oct 27, 2017
5,173
Haven’t done one myself, but I’ve worked with clients who have done some multi-million dollar campaigns (like Scythe, for example). It’s good that you pointed out that you’ve spent a long time building up a fan base prior to launching, OP - bringing your own crowd is an integral part of running a KS campaign! I recommend Jamey Stegmaier’s book on Crowdfunding or his Kickstarter Lessons blog, particularly for those doing board game crowdfunding.
 

Helot_Azure

Member
Oct 29, 2017
1,379
I'd really like to do one for a Graphic Novel and a kid's book that I have planned. I'm just worried about getting in over my head and winding up owing money.
 
OP
OP
Ketchup

Ketchup

Member
Nov 5, 2017
72
Haven’t done one myself, but I’ve worked with clients who have done some multi-million dollar campaigns (like Scythe, for example). It’s good that you pointed out that you’ve spent a long time building up a fan base prior to launching, OP - bringing your own crowd is an integral part of running a KS campaign! I recommend Jamey Stegmaier’s book on Crowdfunding or his Kickstarter Lessons blog, particularly for those doing board game crowdfunding.
Cheers i'll be sure to check that out. Someone recommended me this blog (i think it's the one you mentioned), it has hundreds of entries covering every single point of a kickstarter from beginning to end, certainly not bed time reading but i love how he has gone into so much detail over the years and covered every aspect - https://stonemaiergames.com/kickstarter/full-list-chronological/
 

ZackieChan

Member
Oct 27, 2017
5,173
Cheers i'll be sure to check that out. Someone recommended me this blog (i think it's the one you mentioned), it has hundreds of entries covering every single point of a kickstarter from beginning to end, certainly not bed time reading but i love how he has gone into so much detail over the years and covered every aspect - https://stonemaiergames.com/kickstarter/full-list-chronological/
Yep, that’s the one! Some might be outdated, but the basic info is solid.