Live @ LBCC: How to Build an Audience from Scratch with Barbra J Dillon, Nick Marino, and Madeleine Holly Rosing

September 30, 2016

How to Build an Audience from Scratch is the third and final panel I was on at Long Beach Comic-Con. I feel like I had the complete experience this year. I hosted a workshop, moderated a panel, and was a featured guest on a panel.

This is the panel that I moderated with Barbra Dillon from Fanbase Press (http://www.fanbasepress.com, @barbrajdillon on Twitter), Nick Marino from Holy F*ck (http://holyfckcomic.tumblr.com, @nickmarino on Twitter), and Madeleine Holly-Rosing from Boston Metaphysical Society (http://bostonmetaphysicalsociety.com, @mhollyrosing on Twitter)

Both Barbra and Madeleine have been on the show before. You can listen to Barbra by clicking here, and Madeleine by clicking here. Someday soon I hope to get Nick on too. Stay tuned for that.

I worked very hard to find panelists for this panel that had varying experiences building their audiences. Barbra’s Fanbase Press is both a publishing company and a member of the comic press. Madeleine built her audience through self-publishing and Kickstarter. Nick built his audience through zines and working with publishers.

Each of them has a unique point of view that can help you get to the next level. Our focus truly was how to build an audience from scratch. So often these panels fail to deliver actionable advice for the attendees. This isn’t one of those panels. We gave very specific instructions on how to build that audience, how to talk to the press, and how to present yourself at shows.

Even if you are not outgoing like me, you can find something in this panel which can help you succeed. I hope you enjoy it.

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Episode 35 - Going from a Stray to Working for Marvel with Sean Izaakse

September 29, 2016

Today on the show we have Sean Izaakse (pronounced Issacs). Sean is the co-creator of Stray from Action Labs. He also drew on the Pathfinder series for Dynamite. Recently, he was hired for two issues on Thunderbolts from Marvel.

If you like this episode, please subscribe today on iTunes, Stitcher, Google Play, or anywhere you get your podcasts.

Even though the audio was janky, Sean was a fantastic guest. What I loved most about his interview is how he planned his career one step at a time with the end goal in mind. He knew he wanted to draw comics, but couldn’t make that happen while working a shitty job. So he made a plan to get a better job so he had more time for his art. That led him to become a graphic designer, which wasn’t his passion but still utilized his skill set.

What I wanted to crack with this interview was how he went from South Africa to Marvel. I am fascinated by people who can make it in the business from a remote location. Even though there is a comics scene in South Africa, it certainly it’s LA or New York. I love how Sean talked about growing his career over time. He talked about how your first 1,000 pages are shit and you have to get through them as fast as possible so that you can do good work.

I heard a similar statistic when I was coming up as a screenwriter. People told me the first ten scripts are garbage, so my goal became cranking out ten of my best scripts as quickly as possible. I don’t know if 1,000 pages is the right number for artists, but the 10 script mark was certainly the breaking point for me to learn what I was doing.

There is a concept of niceness that Sean brought up too that I want to touch on. Sean got his job on Thunderbolts from working with Jim Zub, who we just had on the show in the last interview. You can listen to that by clicking here.

He echoed what Jim talked about regarding niceness. Sean treated people like a human for a long time before he got his breaks, but because people wanted to work with him and he did good work, things started to happen for him. You never know where those breaks will come, and Sean talked about how editors from small projects went on to bigger companies, and thought of him because they liked working with him. I just can’t overstate how critical that is for your success. The old adage of nice, on time, and good has shifted. Now you have to be all three.

This was a fascinating look into an artist’s brain who knew where he wanted to be and plotted out how to get there. Hearing how Sean plotted from CD store to graphic designer, to Marvel was a joy to hear and I know you will get a ton out of it too.

If you like this episode, please subscribe today on iTunes, Stitcher, Google Play, or anywhere you get your podcasts. We are pushing out a lot of content these days, and you will miss some if you don’t subscribe.

Enjoy the episode.

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Live @ LBCC: Kickstarter vs. Self-funding with Mary Bellamy and Mike Wellman

September 28, 2016

I had three panels at LBCC this year, and I’m bringing them all to The Business of Art so that the people who didn’t get a chance to be there can enjoy it too. There were tons of exhibitors on the floor and Wannabe that live outside of Los Angeles, or were too busy, that didn’t have a chance to get to the panel and this information is just too good not to share.

If you were at Long Beach, the Kickstarter vs. Self-funding panel was the one you were most likely to see since it was in the big Rumble Room instead of the Creator’s Lab. It was packed with people who wanted to see the advantages of each, and boy did Mike Wellman, Mary Bellamy, and I deliver.

Mike Wellman co-owns the Comic Bug comic book stores in Los Angeles and is the creator of several books, most notably Guns A’ Blazin’ (www.thecomicbug.com; @macafro on twitter). Mary Bellamy is a creator who draws and writes the Zorilita brand (www.marybellamy.com; @zorilita on Twitter), along with working for publishers on things like My Little Pony, among others.

Mary moderated the discussion between Mike and I. She did a great job reigning us in when we got off track. I was surprised at where the discussion took us, and we covered a wide range of topics about the benefits of self-funding, the pride you feel when you make a book from scratch and release it wide, and why Mike won’t ever use Kickstarter. We also talked about how to start getting data, building a business, and letting people in on the process with Kickstarter.

Nobody can ever get me to turn my back on Kickstarter. More than being the reason I even have a business, they are the way I learned how to run a business. They were the educational platform that taught me the mechanics of everything that I do with this podcast now. However, this panel gave me a fascinating insight why somebody would choose the self-funding route when it comes to both creating content and selling it.

If you like this episode, please subscribe on iTunes, Stitcher Google play, or anywhere else you download your podcasts. We’ve already got an archive of over 100 episodes and growing fast. If you don’t subscribe, you will miss something.

If you want to check out our archives, the best place to listen commercial free is by heading to our premium collection of every Business of Art lesson from the first 100 episodes. It’s over 8 hours of content, completely commercial free, for just $20. Check it out by clicking here.

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Hard Lesson 19: 12 Things I learned from running four kickstarter campaigns this year

September 27, 2016

I just wrapped up my fourth Kickstarter campaign in 12 months. Katrina Hates the Dead ran from September until October 2015. Then My Father Didn’t Kill Himself ran from February to March 2016. Then I Can’t Stop Tooting: A Love Story ran from April to May 2016. Finally, Spaceship Broken, Needs Repairs ran from August 2016 to September 2016.

Along the way, we also launched Gherkin Boy and the Dollar of Destiny Activity book without Kickstarter, but for the most part all our launches this year have involved a Kickstarter. We tried to run a Kindle Scout campaign for Spaceship Broken, Needs Repairs, but that was a disaster. You can check out my thoughts on that by clicking here.

I thought about talking about Spaceship Broken solely on this episode, but I would be remiss not to discuss what I learned from all the campaigns we’ve run this year. I thought I was an expert on Kickstarter after Katrina. Ha! That is just one category, we dove into the publishing category this year and it was like a whole different ballgame.

So what lessons did I take away from four Kickstarter in one year?

1. You better be damn well sure you have an audience who likes you and will buy your stuff before you plan a Kickstarter every quarter.

There’s a big difference between putting together one book a year on Kickstarter and doing multiple books a year. When you are doing one book, you can get a lot more money raised because this is your only book. However, if you are doing a bunch of books, people will just wait for the next one. You segment and fragment your audience because everybody knows the next one is coming along soon. So instead of raising $10,000 from one book, you may find yourself raising the same $10,000 but on a bunch of books.

If you want to do a bunch of campaigns, you must build an audience consistently that works their way down you funnel so that you can raise money consistently on each campaign.

2. Just because somebody likes your comics doesn’t mean they’ll like anything else you do.

This goes for anything, whether you are a fine artist or a novelist. When you move into a new genre of format, most people won’t follow you. We opened up into novels and kid’s books this year, and saw our total backers drop considerably from 294 with Katrina down to 155 with My Father Didn’t Kill Himself and finally down to 65 at our lowest, before rebounding back up to 75 with Spaceship Broken, Needs Repairs.

With our comics, we could count on 200–300 backers, but by expanding into other genres and formats, those numbers went down considerably because people that knew me from comics didn’t trust me to make a quality novel.

3. A higher backer count does not mean more money.

Our Katrina campaign raised $8780 from 294 backers. Between the other 3 campaigns we ran this year we raised $7459 from 295 backers. Logically, you would assume we would raise almost the same amount from the same amount of backer, but we came up with a $1321 loss from roughly the same backers.

This also goes back to our previous discussion about splitting your audience. In 2016, we raised less than we raised in the entirety of 2015, from almost the exact same number of backers, but we raised it on three projects (MFDKH, SBNR, and ICST) instead of one (KHTD). This is a perfect example of how you can segment your audience into three projects but not make more at the end of the day.

4. You need to give your audience enough time to read your work.

It takes about 6–9 months for somebody to read a book they bought. I have people who’ve had my books for over a year and haven’t read them. If you want people to back your new work, you need to give them time to fall in love with your last work. One of the main failings of the Spaceship Broken campaign was that we didn’t give people enough time to enjoy My Father Didn’t Kill Himself.

This goes in tandem with allowing people to build a fervor for your books by dripping out information over time, giving people samples, and generally talking about your projects for enough time that interest is built. You can’t just drop a book, even to your existing audience, and expect them to froth at the mouth for it immediately.

5. You better be really good at marketing your books.

When you start doing multiple projects, you will be hitting your audience a lot. For the month leading up to the campaign you will be building hype, for the month of the campaign you will be slamming them with information, and for the month after you’ll be doing wrap-ups. That’s a three-month cycle for every campaign. If you launch 4 books a year, that means you are continuously in a launch cycle.

So you have to get really good at providing value to people, building your hype without it coming across as begging. You need to know your audience down pat.

6. You can’t assume everybody will buy from you.

When you launch one product a year, you can assume more people will back your project, even if they aren’t jazzed by it.

When you are launching multiple books a year, though, you have to become okay with people backing what interests them, and not everything you do. This is a huge mindset shift for most people because they are used to a massive swell of people backing their only Kickstarter for that year.

7. Not everything will be a rousing success just because you made it.

Just because you made it, doesn’t mean it will resonate with your audience. Maybe you made something that is a super niche, like Spaceship Broken, Needs Repairs. Or maybe you wanted to test out a new market and it didn’t work, like I Can’t Stop Tooting. Or maybe you were trying to break into a new medium, like My Father Didn’t Kill Himself.

No matter what it is, you can’t assume that it’s going to be a breakout hit just because you made it. It’s the same with all mediums. Jared Leto isn’t going to get the same reaction to Suicide Squad as he does to his indie movies. Your products won’t be any different. Some will surprise you. Some will disappoint you.

And some will completely change the landscape of what you do.

8. Kickstarter is just one way to launch a product

I launch products on Kickstarter, but I also launch products at shows. I have launched products right to Amazon. Kickstarter is good for certain products, but it is certainly not the only way to launch a product. However, the principles of Kickstarter hold true on every campaign, from pricing to videos to sales letters, Kickstarter is a microcosm of how to launch any product. What you learn there can be expanded into everything you do.

9. Kickstarter can hamper your live show sales.

When you have multiple products, Kickstarter can stop people from buying books that already exist on your convention table. You are basically exchanging immediate sales for the potential that a product will launch successfully in the future. That’s a high-risk gamble.

When you have several products already, those become the focus at live shows. You have tangible products that can be sold, which becomes the focus of your table. Kickstarter works against you in that scenario, because you forego sales of your existing properties to make money for your launch.

That is just swapping operational money for launch money. All your money goes into the same pool at the end of the day. If you are exchanging convention sales for Kickstarter sales, it doesn’t net you any more money at the end of the day.

10. Kickstarter fatigue is a very real thing.

Even though you can launch products all the time if you want, there is fatigue that sets in with both you and your audience. With Spaceship Broken, Needs Repairs, I was already aware of this fatigue. I wanted to avoid yet another burnout from my audience, but the failure of my Kindle Scout campaign made launching my third Kickstarter of 2016 a certainty.

If you launch multiple products in a year, it’s best to vary your launches and do some on Amazon, some on Kickstarter, and still other straight from your site. The less you can rely on one platform the less burnout you will receive from your audience.

11. A campaign that didn’t raise much money might still work on your table.

None of my campaigns from 2016 have burned up the charts, but My Father Didn’t Kill Himself and I Can’t Stop Tooting: A Love Story both found audiences when I put them online and on the con table. Just because your campaign doesn’t do gangbusters doesn’t mean you can’t sell your books.

12. Kickstarter has to integrate with the other aspects of your business.

Kickstarter is a great way to build and maintain and audience, but it’s only a piece of your marketing and business strategy. It has to integrate with your con strategy and your Amazon strategy too. You can’t focus all your energy on Kickstarter to the detriment of the rest of your business, nor vice versa. You need to find a balance.

While Kickstarter still has a big place in my business, it’s becoming a smaller and smaller piece of it. As retail, Amazon, and my con table takes but a huge slice of my revenue, Kickstarter has become a way for me to amplify important projects and reach people who don’t live near me. It provides me with a base of funds for projects and allows me to get pre-orders to fulfill my print minimums.

Kickstarter is an essential piece of my business. However, it is now only a piece instead of the whole thing. Together, we’ve done almost $40,000 in revenue this year. $7,459 is a massive piece of that, but it’s only 25%. In years past it was 90% or more. I’m very proud of that.

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Live @ LBCC: How to Crush it On Kickstarter Workshop

September 26, 2016

This weekend at LBCC, I finally got my ish together and recorded all my panels. I moderated one, I was one of two guests on another, and the third was a workshop. I’m going to release them all because most of you weren’t in these panels and I want to make sure you can extract as much value as possible from them.

The first one I’m releasing is my Crush it on Kickstarter workshop. This was just me and a few devotees. I believe there was seven or eight people in total, so we were really able to dig deep. Instead of my previous workshops, I abandoned the slide show and improvised. I never thought I could have gone off script earlier this year. However, in expanding my mission into all business, and having this podcast, I was able to explain how to use Kickstarter to launch your career and use it as Business 101 for creatives.

I learned business through Kickstarter. It gave me the knowledge to understand marketing. Then, I grew from it. I still use Kickstarter as a piece of my business, but it’s not my whole business. That’s what we talk about in this panel. I use Kickstarter to cite how business really works. We get into some amazing mindset stuff in this panel along with practical advice on when to launch, how to launch, and how to use Kickstarter as a building block into creating an amazing business in the arts.

I hope you enjoy this panel. Let me know what you think. If you like it, subscribe on itunes, stitcher, google play, or anywhere else you get podcasts. We have some amazing stuff coming up that you don’t want to miss out. While you are there, leave us a review so we can help more people.

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31 Tips to help you crush it on Kickstarter

September 23, 2016

With our campaign over, I thought it would be nice to have a round-up of all our Kickstarter tip episodes while I worked on a retrospective of our latest campaign. I’m sure you’ve missed one in the past thirty-one days, and even if you caught them all it’s a great way to download the information into your brain noodle one last time and have a bookmark to return in the future as you plan your own campaign.

Below are all thirty-one Kickstarter tips we gave out during our mini-season. However, if you really want to hear some extra content, I highly recommend downloading the episode too.

Tip #1: Start early.

You should be building your audience for at least three months before you launch a campaign. You can’t be successful in crowdfunding without a crowd.

That means showing off your project, starting a Facebook group, beefing up your social media presence, making press contacts, and building a newsletter.

The more time you have to build your network and prep them for a Kickstarter project that’s coming, the more likely they will be to back your campaign when it’s time.

Tip #2: Send individual thank you notes to backers.

When somebody gives you their hard earned money it is only polite to say thank you. It’s easy for us to treat our backers as money, but they are humans and adding the human touch will improve your connection.

On top of being the right thing to do, it will also stem the loss of backers toward the middle of your campaign because you are making a connection.

Tip #3: Stretch goals should always make your core product better.

Most people have terrible trouble with stretch goals. Once a project funds the backers fall off because there’s nothing more to keep their interest.

You can change that by making sure your stretch goals always improve the quality of your project. For instance, if you have a book that is a 100-page soft cover comic, you can add extra pages at the end as a stretch goal, you can add an extra story, you can make your soft cover a hardcover, you could make your book a bigger size.

Meanwhile, the original backer is still paying the same amount for their pledge, and they are getting a better product. Nobody cares about the bookmarks and prints. They just want the coolest project they can get.

Tip #4: Keep your rewards simple.

There is no need to add multiple options for similar items. Each reward should be targeting a specific buyer, and have enough space in between to clearly delineate the right buyer for that product.

I recommend you start with a $1, $10, $25, $50, and $250 for a standard book. Certain products will not fall into this range, but for a publishing product like a book or CD these five categories should be your base. You can always add more later.

Tip #5: make deposits into the good will bank.

Good will is a finite resource, and you will use it up when you run a campaign. In order to make running a Kickstarter palatable to your audience, you need to add value to people’s lives for months and months before you ask them to pledge to your campaign.

This could be from a webcomic, or free pages from your book, or a podcast helping them fix their biggest problems, or anything you can do to help add value to your audience’s lives. The more value you add, the more trust you will have with your audience and the fuller your good will bank will become.

You can’t be a take with Kickstarter, you have to give 10x more than you ask. You should be delivering 10x value to your audience so they will gladly give you money. In fact, they will consider it the least they can do after all the help you have given them. 

Tip #6: Don’t overextend yourself on merchandise.

Especially once a project is funded, creators generally go crazy offering all sorts of merchandise like t-shirts, mugs, and other very high priced items. The problem is that they are eating into their own profit margins and eventually end up in the red.

Merchandise is unnecessary in almost all instances until you have a well-known product. Just focus on making a great single product (unless your product is incredibly high priced like many tech products are). If you must make merchandise, don’t make anything with multiple sizes. Also note that if you offer merchandise you can no longer ship your product media mail.

Tip #7: Keep your video under three minutes.

Your video is a commercial, and nobody can stand a commercial for more than a couple minutes, no matter how amazing the commercial. You can say everything you need to say in under three minutes.

Yes, you will have to edit yourself down. There are plenty of free programs like iMovie which can take out all the ums and ah. You need to make your case clearly and succinctly so people don’t tune out.

Tip #8: Add lots of images.

The average successful Kickstarter has 11 images in it. Even if you have something with a novel, there are plenty of images you can add besides your cover. You can add a photo of yourself. You can add some quotes from your book overlaid on top of a royalty free image. You can add silly memes. You can have somebody draw some illustrations of your book.

In whatever the case, your book needs images. Humans are visual creatures and picture help improve the quality of your page and make your project look more professional.

Tip #9: Keep your text concise.

People on Kickstarter love to use huge blocks of text, but that is ugly to the eye. They also love to muddle their paragraphs. Remember in school where we learned how to write a paragraph?

You have a main sentence, 2–3 sentences that support the main sentence, and finally a concluding sentence that ties together everything you said. The same thing is true with paragraphs. You have a thesis paragraph with your main point, then 3–5 supporting paragraphs, and a concluding paragraph.

You don’t need much in order to get somebody to back, but it does have to make a compelling, clear, and concise case.

Tip #10: Send updates often.

Throughout the campaign you need to update your backers at least once every 3 days. The average successful projects have given more than 10 updates. These can be raffle giveaways, or stretch goal announcements, or just a great day that you had. I like to offer weekly challenges on my campaigns, so every week I upload a new video for backers.

The point is that the backers need to be involved in your campaign throughout.

Tip #11: You don’t have to do your dream project first.

If you’ve never raised money on Kickstarter before, then don’t expect to raise several thousand dollars, especially if you have no network. You are much better served doing a project you can complete and fund, even if it’s only $500 or less. Then you will have a baseline of your audience and be able to build from there.

Your goal is to get your feet wet and learn the ropes. It’s not to stress yourself out chasing an impossible goal. You have an entire career to build up to your dream project.

Tip #12: Pledge to other projects.

Kickstarter is a community, and people want to see that you are an active backer before you launch a project. Additionally, if you do back a lot of projects you can then email them during your campaign and ask them to introduce you to their audience. It might not work, but you are almost buying their time to consider your offer.

Tip #13: Consider your category carefully.

Some categories have a much more active community than others. Tech, design, and comics have very active communities. Publishing does not. You want to make sure you get a sense of the community

Tip #14: Start on a Tuesday. End on a Thursday.

Studies show that Tuesday is the best day to begin a campaign. However, Wednesday and Thursday are very close to Thursday. So much so to be within the study’s margin of error. However, Thursday is far and away the best day to end a campaign. Thursday blew all other days of the week away by a statistically significant margin.

Tip #15: Post more to social than you think necessary by a factor of 10.

Only about 3% of people see your Facebook posts. Twitter has a shelf life of 15 minutes. So the people you think you are going to annoy probably haven’t even seen your post. You need to post all the time in order to get word out about your project.

Post when people back your campaign. Post when you’ve hit a milestone. Post everything, but make sure to keep changing your imagery so it doesn’t get stale. It’s the same reason McDonald’s has 1,000 different billboards. The same image drowns into the background. People need new stimuli in order to keep engaged.

Tip #16: You need to raise 30% of your funding in the first 48 hours.

If you think you can raise $1,000, that means at least $300 needs to be raises in the first 48 in order to guarantee success. If you raise under 20% then your project will have a tough uphill battle. If you raise more than 50% it means your target was too low. 30% means you hit the nail on the head.

Tip #17: Convey the why.

Most campaigns are pretty good about describe what their product it. Some can even clearly discuss how they are going to bring it to market. Almost none convey why people should back their project or why they are uniquely qualified to bring the product to market.

The why is what makes people back, though. People are much more likely to back an unfinished product with a compelling why than a finished product that has none. The why is different for every product, but if there is no why you will suffer much fewer backers and risk your campaign not funding.

Tip #18: Bring the passion.

If you can’t show passion for your product, then nobody else will show passion either. You need to show extreme passion for your product to motivate others to get passionate about the product as well. Your passion is contagious, as is your lack of it. It needs to come through in your word, your social strategy, and definitely in your video.

Tip #19: Make sure to calculate shipping carefully.

Almost 10% of successfully funded products fail to deliver. The number one culprit in that failure is shipping. Sometimes rates go up, but sometimes it’s because stretch goals change the weight and size of the box. Still other times it’s because a product that was once media mail can no longer be shipped that way because certain incentives prevent it from being shipped in that way. Other times it can be because they didn’t properly check shipping rates to all countries, and international shipping ate into all their costs.

You need to be very careful with shipping. It can add an undue burden on the unprepared creator. However, with some planning you can make sure it doesn’t destroy your campaign and send you into debt fulfilling rewards.

Tip #20: Kickstarter takes 10% off the top.

Kickstarter takes 5% for their fees and 3–5% for all processing fees through their credit card vendor. Take this into account. Add a 10% buffer to your campaign to prevent failing to raise enough money.

Tip #21: Transparency is key.

If something is going wrong, or right, tell your backers. If you have something to say, say it. Don’t hide anything. People are very forgiving if you are honest.

Tip #22: Schedule posts before your campaign begins.

Buffer, Hootsuite, meet Edgar, Tweet Jukebox, and many others allow you to schedule a base line of social media posts before your campaign begins. You will have other things to post as well, but you want to make sure you get the bulk of your updates out of the way early so that you aren’t fretting about them when your campaign is live.

Tip #23: Double check your rewards.

You can’t change your rewards when your campaign is live. If you accidentally charge the wrong shipping price, or you need to change the tiers in any way once even one person backs, you can’t. This often leads creators to creating new tiers to try to fix what they screwed up. An ounce of preparation is priceless.

Tip #24: Give an early bird perk to your first-day backers.

The first 48 hours is critical to the success of the campaign, so reward those people who back early. It doesn’t have to be much. Maybe the first day backers get a free wallpaper, or maybe they get the digital rewards before anybody else. It doesn’t have to be much, but that little gesture will help push people over the edge to back early.

Tip #25: Make your Kickstarter campaign a spectacle.

Kickstarter is the closest thing to an online comic-con that I’ve ever seen. You should be treating it as such by offering super cool, exclusive perks, doing live chats, engaging with your fans, and giving people something they can’t get anywhere else. You could offer daily giveaways through raffles, or weekly videos.

You can do a google hangout or an AMA, but the simple fact is that Kickstarter is an event and the more you can treat it as such the more success you will have.

Tip #26: Set up a launch and close event for your campaign.

You can do this at your house, at a local comic book store, at a park, or a restaurant. The key is not to spend a bunch of money on the event, it’s to get people excited about your project. If you are an artist, you can hold a show at a local gallery.

If you are a filmmaker you can hold a trailer screening at a local theater. You should hold these events the first and last day of your campaign to help drum up the most fervent enthusiasm possible during the most crucial times of your campaign.

Tip #27: Build press relationships early.

Emailing press contacts the day your campaign launches is too late. The press may have up to a six-month lead time on getting articles into their pipeline. However, if you aren’t building your contacts well before then the press won’t even write a story about you.

You need to be fostering these contacts for months or years before you launch. Offer to do articles for them, meet them at cons, find them on social media, and treat them like humans just like you would for anybody else. The real question you need to ask is “how can I provide value in their lives?” When it’s time to email about your project, then you need to make it easy for them to publish.

Tip #28: Your backers will be mostly people you know.

No matter how many emails you send to the press or how many cold contacts you make during your campaign, most people that back your project will be people you know for months or years before the campaign launches. That means you need the biggest network of energetic friends and fans before you ever hit the launch button. Remember, you can’t be successfully on crowdfunding without a crowd.

Tip #29: Pledge levels should include rewards from all previous tiers.

You don’t want people hesitating about backing a higher tier because they don’t want to miss out on something they really wanted from a previous tier. You want it to be very easy for them to increase their pledge level.

Increasing existing pledges is a crucial part of the middle campaign lull, and any hesitation will prevent you from getting that extra pledge money.

Tip #30: Model success.

Hundreds of other campaigns have done Kickstarter better than you in the past. They’ve succeeded and failed thousands of times. Use that to your advantage. Look through them all and find the points of commonality between them. Make sure to take note of the words they use, the imagery, and the reward levels that are consistent among the highest performers. Then, you can model that in your own campaign for the highest chance of success.

Tip #31: The right title is critical for success.

With hundreds of projects to choose from, you only have a second to catch a backer’s eye. With the way that Kickstarter is set up, you basically get an image and a title to make a backer click on your link.

So you want to make sure your title is catchy AND that is uses all 60 characters to fully explain the reason somebody should click on your project. Almost all hyper successful projects use a colon after the name of their project to state what the project is about. Make sure to utilize all 60 characters in order to give yourself the best chance for success.

That’s it for our mini-season. If you liked this, please subscribe, rate, and review it wherever you download your podcasts, whether it’s Itunes, Stitcher, Google Play, or any of the other wonderful podcast aggregators out there.

It’s the best way for us to find new people to help and to make sure you don’t miss any future episodes. We have some crazy stuff coming up that you won’t want to miss, so subscribe now.

Even though the campaign is over, you can follow the link of www.spaceshipbrokenbook.com to find great information about the book’s release and where you can order or other books online.

And head on over the www.thebusinessofart.us in order to join our mailing list and get our handy guide to help you build an audience from scratch.

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Kickstarter Tip #31: The right title is critical for success

September 22, 2016

Welcome back Wannabes and Creators to our special Kickstarter mini-season sponsored by Spaceship Broken, Needs Repairs, our new Kickstarter. You can check it out at www.spaceshipbrokenbook.com.

These are short tips we are running every day during the course of our campaign. It’s not a full show. It’s just a great actionable tip you can use to run better Kickstarter projects today.

Today’s tip is that the right title is critical for success. With hundreds of projects to choose from, you only have a second to catch a backer’s eye. With the way that Kickstarter is set up, you basically get an image and a title to make a backer click on your link.

So you want to make sure your title is catchy AND that is uses all 60 characters to fully explain the reason somebody should click on your project. Almost all hyper-successful projects use a colon after the name of their project to state what the project is about. Make sure to utilize all 60 characters in order to give yourself the best chance for success.

That’s it for our mini-season. This is the last day to back our campaign, so please head over and check it out Spaceship Broken, Needs Repairs today at www.spaceshipbrokenbook.com.

If you like this podcast, please subscribe, rate, and review it wherever you download your podcasts. 

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Kickstarter Tip #30: Model success

September 21, 2016

Welcome back Wannabes and Creators to our special Kickstarter mini-season sponsored by Spaceship Broken, Needs Repairs, our new Kickstarter. You can check it out at www.spaceshipbrokenbook.com.

These are short tips we are running every day during the course of our campaign. It’s not a full show. It’s just a great actionable tip you can use to run better Kickstarter projects today.

Today’s tip is to model success there are hundreds of successful campaigns in your category. Look through them all and find the points of commonality between them. Make sure to take note of the words they use, the imagery, and the reward levels that are consistent among the highest performers. Then, you can model that in your own campaign for the highest chance of success.

That’s it for today. Come back tomorrow for another quick Kickstarter tip, and check out our new Kickstarter, Spaceship Broken, Needs Repairs at www.spaceshipbrokenbook.com.

If you like this podcast, please subscribe, rate, and review it wherever you download your podcasts.

 

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Kickstarter Tip #29: Pledge levels should include rewards from all previous tiers

September 20, 2016

Welcome back Wannabes and Creators to our special Kickstarter mini-season sponsored by Spaceship Broken, Needs Repairs, our new Kickstarter. You can check it out at www.spaceshipbrokenbook.com.

These are short tips we are running every day during the course of our campaign. It’s not a full show. It’s just a great actionable tip you can use to run better Kickstarter projects today.

Today’s tip is that pledge levels should include rewards from all previous tiers. You don’t want people hesitating about backing a higher tier because they don’t want to miss out on something they really wanted from a previous tier. You want it to be very easy for them to increase their pledge level.

Increasing existing pledges is a crucial part of the middle campaign lull, and any hesitation will prevent you from getting that extra pledge money.

That’s it for today. Come back tomorrow for another quick Kickstarter tip, and check out our new Kickstarter, Spaceship Broken, Needs Repairs at www.spaceshipbrokenbook.com.

If you like this podcast, please subscribe, rate, and review it wherever you download your podcasts.

 

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Kickstarter Tip #28: Your backers will be mostly people you know

September 19, 2016

Welcome back Wannabes and Creators to our special Kickstarter mini-season sponsored by Spaceship Broken, Needs Repairs, our new Kickstarter. You can check it out at www.spaceshipbrokenbook.com.

These are short tips we are running every day during the course of our campaign. It’s not a full show. It’s just a great actionable tip you can use to run better Kickstarter projects today.

Today’s tip is that your backers will be mostly people you know. No matter how many emails you send to the press or how many cold contacts you make during your campaign, most people that back your project will be people you know for months or years before the campaign launches. That means you need the biggest network of energetic friends and fans before you ever hit the launch button. Remember, you can’t be successfully on crowdfunding without a crowd.

That’s it for today. Come back tomorrow for another quick Kickstarter tip, and check out our new Kickstarter, Spaceship Broken, Needs Repairs at www.spaceshipbrokenbook.com.

If you like this podcast, please subscribe, rate, and review it wherever you download your podcasts.

 

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