One Question, Six Creators: What Makes a Good Project Page?

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Clockwise from top left: Kit Hickey, Cori Olinghouse, Aaron Rasmussen, Steve McGuigan (1/2 of Bitbanger Labs), Brian Foo, and Jake Parker
Clockwise from top left: Kit Hickey, Cori Olinghouse, Aaron Rasmussen, Steve McGuigan (1/2 of Bitbanger Labs), Brian Foo, and Jake Parker

We’re always interested in how creators can best share their ideas with the community, and having an informative and compelling project page is one of the first steps to doing so! We asked creators from several categories about what they think is important to consider while building a project page.

Cori Olinghouse (Ghost lines LIVE, Dance): Make it as visually engaging as possible! People don't want to spend endless time reading text - it's wonderful when it's direct, sincere, and you bring people into your process in the most dynamic way possible.

Jake Parker (DRAWINGS, Comics): The project image that you pick is the same image that shows up on the projects page, so it’s going to be this tiny thumbnail, but it’s also going to be this big image at the top of your project page. 90% of people are just going to see this as a thumbnail, so I think it needs to work more as a small image than it does as a big image. If you look at my last project, I made the letters huge. I wanted to make sure that tiny thumbnail was very clickable. My advice is to not just think about the page, but think about how your project will exist outside of the project page on the rest of Kickstarter.

We’re living in this time where attention spans are short, and imagery is a key factor in how we process information. Your Kickstarter page should have lots of pictures. If you’re going to write out lots of words, break it up into smaller chunks. Long text can get boring and tedious, and I’m less likely to sift through a giant paragraph, than through bullet points. That said, you do need to tell your story, but you need to tell it in an easily digestible way.

Make sure your image for your video is a nice, iconic piece of artwork that looks great small as well as big, have lots of pictures on your page, show pictures of things they’re going to get when they back you, show pictures of your project, bullet point style or short snippet style of writing.

Kit Hickey (Ministry of Supply: The Future of Dress Shirts, Fashion): Spend a LOT of time thinking about what your story is. For example, we spoke to over 150 people about how our Apollo shirt would improve their life. This enabled us to tell our story in a way that showed this wasn't just a shirt: instead, it is something that really would make you feel more confident throughout your day, enable you to perform better and become a part of your daily life. Telling this story is the most important thing on the page.

Aaron Rasmussen (Mr.Ghost: iPhone EMF Detector, Technology): Be clear about what your project is at the top of the page. Include any relevant information on technical specs etc. When I'm glancing over a kickstarter project, I always read a little before watching the video. If the video is beautiful but the written part is a disaster, I may never see your beautiful video.

Back some projects, watch a ton of project videos, read a lot of body copy. Check out other projects that were successful in your category, and use the video ideas that you like.

Put some thought into your rewards. Write them clearly. Make sure people understand what they're getting. BlindSide was difficult to make multiple rewards for. It seemed like you either wanted the game or not. Michael and I thought about it and came up with doing a customized version at the high end, which three people did and we thoroughly enjoyed making. At the low end, the reward was half of the game. Have friends review your project description and make edits for clarity. You'll be very close to your project, so you need some impartial eyes to help you determine if you're skipping important concepts or belaboring unimportant ones.

Brian Foo (Continuous City, Publishing): Tell a story, show that you're a normal person, be as genuine as possible, make your pitch clear (i.e. someone can repeat it to someone else), have good sound in your video.

Steve McGuigan (pixelstick - Light painting evolved, Technology): Beg, borrow, or steal talent and equipment to make your video and copy as inviting and polished as possible. You are asking people to put their trust in you, the least you can do is present your idea well.

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