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[Meta] You deserve some recognition.

Campus can only ever be as good as the people who visit, the answers you give, and the discussions you have. That’s why we’ve kicked off by inviting some of our favorite creators to set the tone and get the discussion moving. We want to make sure Campus encourages great participants. What motivates you to share your knowledge? And what can we do to recognize people who put their time and energy into making these conversations good ones?
Jon Leland Asked on
12 answers
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9

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Neil Clarke
2-time creator
27
Answered on

My motivation is simply paying it forward. I had a lot of people give me great advice when I was starting. Now that I know what I'm doing, I try to follow their lead. 

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Vincent B. Donadio
2-time creator
69
Answered on

What motivates you to share your knowledge?


Kickstarter is a wonderful community (full of its own micro-communities, for sure, but still...) and I love having been a part of it for so long. I was even working practically full-time as a freelance marketing consultant for a few years, and I ended up working with a lot of clients on making their Kickstarter campaigns more organized, helped them communicate with their backers better, and make it an overall more successful endeavor for them.

Now that I'm a two-time successful Kickstarter creator, I sort of feel it is my duty to not only share my experiences but also to inspire others to create and/or create better. I am very proud of what I've built so far, but the truth is, it wouldn't have been possible without Kickstarter and its amazing community. Therefore, I owe it to that amazing community to contribute what I can, aside from just contributing money to projects (which I've also done my fair share of, haha).


what can we do to recognize people who put their time and energy into making these conversations good ones? 


I'm not really sure what you're looking to do in this regard, but "gamification" seems to work well in most circles... Maybe giving helpful contributors badges that are displayed next to their name that show what they're known for or what feedback of theirs has been the most helpful, so people know that this person has been around a while and given advice that other people think is really good... An example of this would be, say, if I have given a lot of advice to people in the "food" category (as we have discussed in another topic on how to categorize/organize topics/questions/sections of Campus), maybe I'd have a little badge next to my name with a fork and knife crossed. If people hover (or click) on that, it'll tell them that I have been recognized within Kickstarter Campus for giving consistently good advice to people running (or thinking of running) food projects.

You could also incorporate something similar to the Reddit Karma system, where you get "Karma points" whenever people upvote your input.

(This would require a lot more programming on the KS website!) If you're thinking of a monetary recognization, perhaps you can give particularly helpful people like a $20 credit into their KS account with which they can back a project that they like. So it's basically Kickstarter putting their $20 toward a project but the Campus contributor gets the reward.

Then again, you could just put a gold star next to their names... People like getting gold stars (;

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Chelle Destefano
Creator
5
Answered on

I was delighted to wake up and find Campus on Kickstarter! :) This was something I had been wanting for a long time, a community on Kickstarter. Thanks heaps Kickstarter! ;)

I did well with my first kickstarter by promoting non stop on my social medias. I urge anyone to use instagram as well, this may seem a small social media but quite popular and you will be surprised by the amount of people that notice your posts/photos on instagram. I posted an image of my main kickstarter campaign and many people noticed this, even though I didn't have as many followers as I do now. My kickstarter was focused on my visual arts project on watercolour artworks and turning it into a book.

The other thing that is very important is to engage with your backers or potential backers, the more you do the more they are likely to support your project as they want to feel like they are a part of it. Something else I used was Green Inbox, a really good tool, nothing like those terrible scammy crowdfund services that spam you with messages when you launch your project. The tool let me contact everyone on my social media with a personal note without seeming like I was spamming them. I'd urge you to give green inbox a go if you have lot of contacts on your social medias (fb, twitter, linked in, tumblr, etc) and they have some sort of thing to send to bloggers and publishers of newspapers/media. Most of all just keep promoting, and go on google + as well as search for crowdfunding groups and forums that let you share your project on there.

Oh the most important thing I HAVE to mention is, the amazing kickstarter project creators that I backed who were willing to support my project! I got many of my backers from them after I sent them a message each letting them know of my project. I was told this was called Symbiotic patronage which is a lovely thing, knowing that this KS community is willing to support each other. Most of my backers came from this and from the green inbox tool too.

With rewards, consider postcards as a smaller pledge tier if you have mostly large pledge tiers, as you will find more people will want to support the project if they can be part of it in a smaller way. Stickers and other kinds of rewards excite people as well :)

I do want to ask all of you about facebooks inability to show kickstarter links in posts on main feeds these days, have you found a way around this?

I hope my ideas and advice have helped and inspired many :)

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4

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IronSpike
12-time creator
125
Last edited on

I was a Kickstarter early adopter, and I work in comics. It's a strange industry. I could spend paragraphs on exactly how, but suffice to say there's a small overall readership in comparison to nearly every other entertainment medium, and a disproportionate focus on a single genre, to the detriment of every other. As a result, if you don't want to work on a superhero book, the chances of being published can be pretty limited.

Kickstarter has been nothing short of a paradigm shift for the small press. Running a campaign is practically a rite of passage for an alternative cartoonist, now; it's something people consider a milestone in their career. But the fact everyone does it doesn't mean everyone does it well.

The pre-order model most Kickstarter cartoonists favor has a lot of potential pitfalls I'm interested in helping other artists avoid. Calculating shipping, obtaining print quotes, promotion, video production. Used carefully, this site can create an entire career, like it has for me. That's an opportunity that should be extended to everyone who wants it.

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Renee Launer
6-time creator
83
Answered on

I belong to MANY forums on MANY topics - and I spend far too much time writing for them.  However, getting yourself known and respected in any community always, without fail, brings back rewards and opportunities of one kind or another.   Right now, I have no idea what good will come to our business from doing this.

One thing I'd hope is that Kickstarter staff are listening.  I feel that the backer-side interfaces on Kickstarter are pretty slick and clean - but the creator-side stuff is often a pain to deal with, buggy, hard, error-prone.   So perhaps this kind of dialog will allow Kickstarter staff to better understand where the kinks are on the creator-side of things...that would certainly be payback.

The biggest imaginable reward would be some kind of Kickstarter-awarded or community-voted badge that says something like: "This project creator is widely respected here" - perhaps there would be a way to feature respected creator's projects more prominently, like a staff-pick...but maybe a "most-liked" pick or something.  Anything that gets our project more visibility than the rest is recognition that cannot be beaten!

2 comments

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Ryan Dunlap
2-time creator
86
Last edited on

There's so much that we don't know that we don't know. If I learn a lesson the hard way and someone else doesn't have to because of my mistake, I'd rather save them the frustration. We now have the ability to directly access people who would be interested in your product/idea instead of having to wait to be chosen to go through a system that favors the system creator and not the creative person entering that system. That's incredibly empowering, but we still have to learn how to reach people effectively.

Perhaps as a form of recognition Creators can give other Creators votes for whenever they've benefitted from advice placed on the Campus.

...or Kickstarter swag. Who wouldn't love Kickstarter swag? ;)

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3

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Trevor Lehmann
2-time creator
43
Answered on

I like to help people achieve their goals and dreams. I often back projects but don't request a reward (I don't need more stuff, I just want to see people succeed). During the day I work for a university advising students on what degree to take and the bigger picture in life, so spending my evenings helping others is nice too!

1 comment

3

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Doug Monahan
Creator
45
Answered on

A) Little Bit About Me

I am a newbie - haven't even submitted my first campaign yet. So . . . the value I can bring to the community comes from a newbie perspective. Kickstarter reminds me of when you show up to campus as a Freshman, wide eyed and bushy tailed,confused, excited, one minute thinking you are king of the world and then the next minute realizing there is so much you don't know. For me - I figured that I should read, read and read. I should back as many projects as I physically (and financially can afford) I'm at the low end of the totem pole regarding backed projects - but constantly looking for ones that I find exciting. I've worked on it for all of 2015 off and on. I've spent over a hundred thousand dollars of my personal savings into my ibackpack project.  I have been reading virtually anything and everything here on Kickstarter. When Stephanie says I should go to a blog and read it I did. When Jon points out a page - I devour it. When Kickstarter says you should read the rules and regulations I did. When Kickstarter changed its charter I read it so I could really understand the entire purpose. I am doing everything and anything I can in order to be part of the community. I have high hopes to be one of the most successful campaigns financially and number of backers that Kickstarter has ever seen. That is why I started this endeavor to read more about kickstarter. Then something else happened that I wasn't counting on - I found a site that is filled with dreamers. I found a site filled with entrepreneurs. I found a site where there are people like me who don't just talk about how they can change the world - but actually do it. I LOVE THAT. I had gotten into a daily routine where I would read my Facebook feed each day for the "news" and now the first thing I do is go to KS and search for new Technology or new Design Projects. I find it far more beneficial to my life to read about people's dreams in a positive way than pettiness found on FB, rants and raves about politics, religion and of course the never ending barrage of cat photos (I don't have a cat, really care for cats) I've gotten hooked, drank the Koolaid so-to-speak and am getting a great deal out of Kickstarter thus far - and yet I haven't released my own campaign yet. The more I read, the more nervous I was/amto finally "take it live."  If any experienced Kickstarters read this - please don't slam me - remember I am new and still trying to fit in and become a member of this amazing community where there are no rules for being admitted to the club - no party for you when you are finally "one of the team" - and you just sort of know when you are "admitted" - which I am DEFINITELY not - YET. All in time. All in time.

B) What can you reward people who are willing to help build the system here - answer questions - stoke the fire so to speak?

Staff Picks would be nice - Trusted individual would also be nice - A contact within KS where you can ask questions and really get a personalized answer vs. a canned answer would be nice. Someone that you can actually speak with once you hit certain goals - such a $1 Million raised - or perhaps 10,000 backers.  Doug Monahan - www.ibackpack.mobi

I'm going to write some questions that I can answer from a Newbie Perspective and share with others (who can find this section) - hopefully that can help build the community in a positive way. Here is a link to my unlaunched campaign - still tweaking some of the various technologies we are inventing - trying to make sure it is perfect - https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/ibackpack/2042355245?token=9b97d0af 

3 comments

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Ashley Cooper
2-time creator
129
Answered on

In a very real way, Kickstarter is largely responsible for launching my career, so I'm happy to give back to the community that helped make great things possible for me. 

When I started my first campaign in late 2011, there weren't many great resources for learning about crowdfunding, which left me on my own to do a lot of independent research. It worked, but I would have loved to have had something like Campus to visit and learn from people who had done it before.

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eileen alden
Creator
8
Answered on

Hi there!  I love this campus idea!  

i was actually just earlier sharing some ideas via direct message with a fellow comic maker who is thinking about kickstarting.  like him, i also reached out early and got help from people who had been-there-done-that. so i am psyched to be able to pay it forward.

i have only had one successful launch, but i'm happy to share some ideas as best i can and support the community. 

i know here in the oakland/sf area we have an in-person meetup group of kickstarting folks and entrepreneurs so maybe there is a way to get some crossover involvement in the forum?  best - eileen

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2

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John Wrot!
8-time creator
348
Answered on

Thanks, Jon for the great question.

A) What motivates me to share my knowledge?

I just really like helping people.  I don't see why anybody else's efforts, on a path I've already trod, should have to be troublesome.  -  When you go hiking, and you're leading the pack, it's your duty to call out "ROCK!" ... "TREE STUMP!" ... "WATCH YOUR STEP!", and then you hear it echo down the line of hikers following you.  -  To me, that's what Campus and our Kickstarter Advice Blog are; a forum to call out "CAMPAIGN LULL!" ... "INTERNATIONAL SHIPPING!" ... "DROPPED PLEDGES!" - Or whatever else needs attention. 

Every now and again, somebody trips anyway.  Let's rush to help them get back up, brush their knees off, and get ready for another go at it.  Nobody trips on the same tree stump twice.

B) What can we do to recognize people who put their time and energy into making these conversations good ones?

Well most of us answering the Campus questions are successful creators, and likely to have more projects in the future.
We don't do what we do for a reward, but as you asked a few ideas come to mind:

  • Offer Kickstarter Fee decreases.  Top posters will have their Kickstarter Fees reduced from 5% to 4% or 3% on their next project.
  • Slap us with the Kickstarter Staff Pick honor early in our campaigns.
  • Offer a "Kickstarter Campus Top Supporter" badge on our profiles.
  • Or just mail us large bags of homemade cookies now that Lent is over. : O

Campus, any way it falls, you deserve a high five.

John Wrot!
www.gatekeepergaming.com

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John Wrot!
8-time creator
348
Answered on

Hey, Jon.  Anything ever come of this thread?  Has Kickstarter decided to do anything in this regard?

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