What's your project's communications plan?

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Once you’ve figured out who you need to tell about your project, it’s time to start thinking about how you’ll reach them. Lining up a solid promotion plan and key messages before you launch ensures that you’ll be spreading the word with a consistent voice and to the right people at the right time. Here’s how you can prepare ahead of time.

Craft your messaging

  • Think about your project’s overarching themes and who you are. For example, are you a ceramicist that creates cookware? A producer helping to make a horror film? Use this worksheet to document your key messages.
  • With your project’s themes in mind, revisit how you talk about your work on your website, social media, in your project description, etc. Are your main themes always represented? 
  • Look at projects similar to yours and read news stories that have covered them. What words and images do they use? For example, if you’re creating a film, do you find that people get excited by clips and stills from your footage, details about the film’s story, or your background as a filmmaker? 
  • While researching projects and stories similar to your own, you can use the worksheet to keep track of which outlets and journalists are covering your themes. 
  • As you work on your project page, share your preview with friends and colleagues to get feedback on your messaging. Provide them with some direction, ask them if the copy is clear, if your description is thorough and interesting, and if your rewards are pledge-worthy!
  • Don't underestimate the importance of explaining why and how your project will make a difference in people's lives! In the clip below, creator Pavan Bapu talks about the importance of sharing the story behind Gramovox.

Figure out your communications plan

  • Create a launch day communications plan. Again, this is the list of who, what, and when you’ll be messaging. Here’s a sample template that you can use. 
  • Our project timeline gives an overview of the messaging that you should consider planning out, but do what feels right for you! 
  • Before you launch, draft emails that you can send to each of the groups in your contact list. The first email should be for close friends and family, the second for press, etc. 
  • Be ready with personalized follow-up messages. Group emails and newsletters are great for getting the word out, but the most effective messaging for attracting attention are direct, one-to-one emails. 
  • Draft specific messaging for friends and family that are active online and have large followings. Provide them with sample Facebook or Twitter posts that they can easily use to spread the word. 
  • Plan a few project updates: A recap of your progress after 24 hours, a status check at the midway point of your campaign, a few updates for the last week of funding. Each update should encourage backers to share your project (include some sample tweets!).
There's more advice from Tim and other music creators in this Creator Basics clip.
There's more advice from Tim and other music creators in this Creator Basics clip.

 

Align your content strategy with your schedule

  • Figure out your project updates schedule. Will you post one major update a month and a shorter one each week? Maybe bi-weekly? Let backers know when they can expect to hear from you. 
  • Schedule time to respond to comments and messages from your community. 
  • Get comfortable engaging with your community on social media. Consider the 70/30 rule, where 70% of what you share is purely content driven and 30% is a direct ask for support. Study how other creators share their projects online. 
  • Don’t be afraid to ask for help. If one of your collaborators is great at social media, get them involved! If you know someone that plans great in-person events, enlist them.

Extra credit

 

Now you’re on your way to having a solid communications plan! Let us know what parts of your promotion plan worked (or didn’t work) on Twitter @KickstarterTips, or continue this conversation with other creators on Campus.