You're about to begin a Kickstarter campaign. Well here's a few tips, some things I've learnt, a few things to avoid, that could make the difference between success and failure.
1. Press “Go” without involving everyone
Do not press the “Go” button when your partner is doing dishes in the other room! No, that would be bad. May I even be so bold as to suggest pressing the button in style, maybe with a little champagne? Everyone involved in the project should be gathered around the computer, glasses in hand and some kind words said, maybe even directly to the person who created the project. Because maybe if she finds out her campaign was launched when she sits down at her desk and gets the congratulations email from Kickstarter, after she does the dishes, she might become what we call in our family "un-rope-able". This early button pushing behaviour might also to lead to domestic disharmony that might last for days and a couch might be involved too, but I don't know, this article is purely hypothetical... just remember rule number one... be inclusive. Please.
2. Start the campaign without a plan
Pressing the button is just the beginning, before you even press the "Go" button, you should have identified some evangelists to help spread the word. This saves you the embarrassment and humiliation of appearing like a non-stop billboard for a month and having people avoid you in the supermarket, from fear you might mention your project - yet another time. (Arithmetic Village, Arithmetic Village, Arithmetic Village...)
3. Assume a Kickstarter campaign will get you out of Jury duty
This one is important. The judicial system has not discovered Kickstarter or crowdfunding, they think it is something that involves jumper cables. If you do, by some lucky chance, get chosen to serve on a jury, there is no internet in the courthouse, so you might have to sneak off to a cafe to squeeze in five or ten minutes on Facebook. The worst thing is this: You also might actually get so involved with the criminal case that may or may not involve robbers who accidentally stab themselves while climbing into the getaway car with all of their loot (no kidding), that you may even forget entirely about your project and decide to be a detective instead.
4. Move house in the middle of the campaign (this might be obvious)
Moving takes time and energy, and running a successful campaign usually involves actually knowing where your computer is and having consistent internet service.
5. Have children
They are cute and all, and when they grow up they might even make you a cup of tea, or take you to a nice brunch. But when they are under the age of 18, they have teacher conferences, fundraisers, potlucks, plays, and like to eat three times a day, every day. They don't drive until they are around 17 but have lots of places to go like school, ballet and gymnastics, swimming, etc. Definitely do not have three children in your home while running a kickstarter campaign, send them to their grandmothers for the month, that's what grandparents are for.
If this free advice is helpful, please donate a dollar or two to my campaign - there’s still hope yet!
March 23rd - I’m halfway through the campaign and I can't wait to get started, after I pack up a few more boxes...
BTW If you have some do's and dont's, things you learnt about how to run a great campaign, please leave a comment, as a gift to the next people looking for some wisdom.