Storyteller & Arts Communicator

Kickstarter Tips at LA Makerspace

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Notes from the Kickstarter Workshop I attended at LA Makerspace tonight!

Moderator: Stephanie Pereira, Director, Art Program at Kickstarter
Panel:
Sean Bonner, Co-founder at Safecast Kickstarter project: Safecast X Kickstarter Geiger Counter
Mya Stark, Director of Outreach and Development for Cinefamily Kickstarter project: Cinefamily Digital Projection & Theater Restoration! 
Jesse Genet, Founder and CEO at Lumi Co Kickstarter project: Print on Fabric Using Sunlight: The Lumi Process & Lumi Co. – A NEW TEXTILE PRINTING TECHNOLOGY
Stacey Storey, Producer, Best Friends Forever Kickstarter project: BEST FRIENDS FOREVER (an apocalyptic feature film)
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Our Moderator works at Kickstarter!

SP: First thing to do if you're thinking of starting a Kickstarter campaign is fund a project. Get involved in the community.
  • no charity or cause funding
  • KS specializes in bringing creative projects to life
  • 3.2 million people & 850 thousand are repeat backers (in 2012 I believe)
  • Offer creative experiences
  • Write your backers into the story
  • Most people pledge $25
  • Account for 5% in KS fees, 3-5% in Amazon fees when calculating your goals

CINEFAMILY has an amazing blurb (see link above)

JG: "We needed to take into consideration that nothing ever goes right in Production....and postage."

SP: Cinefamily may the most successful nonprofit project on Kickstarter

MS: One perk included membership and they gained 400 new members

  • highly prioritized an audience complaint: hard and uncomfortable seats. Those perks to buy and name a seat went very well.

SP to SB on his perks & updates: "You're communicating with people, you're not selling shit."

SS: "It's all you think and know about for 30 days....also great press."IMG_20130130_203525

  • On Associate Producer credit: "People think it's buying your way into Hollywood but welcome to Hollywood." 
  • Her film had a random backer at $10,000 level. He just liked the campaign.

JG: When asking your backers to share, ask them questions to help target very specific groups of people.

  • "DIY Backyard Textile Printing is not everyone's thing."
  • Sent gifts to backers they were not expecting.
  • Made a cute gif and sent the ability to create shirt design, which backers created, and shared picture with hashtag
  • Post-campaign, send '3 ways to continue to engage with Lumi for the Holidays"

SS: Targeted women making film, people who like to use actual film, interested in shooting on location in Texas

  • Every time they hit a goal towards their final goal, they focused on a different target group
  • had a "Hustle" meeting every morning at 6a.m. to prioritize
  • Send backers private video perks : "We'll drink a beer with your name on it."
  • Sang Bohemian Rhapsody in their car together
  • "Kind of like an action movie, Kickstarter has a ticking clock...made our community feel like they owned it."

SURPRISES & WHAT THEY WOULD DO DIFFERENTLY

SS: Surprised at how many hours it took every day

  • She would adjust how much help they had and add the shipping costs

JG: Now you know during the campaign who is domestic backer and who is international

JG: Be clear on calculation and communication of postage. It's all perception.

  • Make that dialogue very clear.

MS: Thanked everybody individually when they first pledged

SP: Kickstarter just rolled out the ability to sort people by new pledges

MS: Didn't have a plan for updates post-campaign and would do that next time.

  • "It works the way you think it will if you strategize."

SS: When to hold a campaign:

  • not around or at end of holiday
  • they wanted to end on a particular day, after SXSW b/c then they could promote Kickstarter there
  • picked ideal date and worked backwards for plan

JG: Talk about your own legitimacy as well

  • Why you an deliver and how you have delivered in the past

WHAT WORKED THAT DIDN'T COST MONEY or REQUIRE A PUBLICIST

The night ended with socializing and talking to the panelists.

JG: Have fun with campaign and make it as true to your spirit as you can convey to your backers

SS: Could only afford Publicist after Kickstarter

SP: Ask yourself (to find your target backers): 1. Who is making this?

2. What other stories can you pull out of this?

SB: Genuine excitement is contagious.

SP: Segment out backer levels and strategize on a white board:

Visualize who would back you at different levels. What rewards would excite them?

There was more about taxes and income from Kickstarter too. I'll add those soon. -CMJ

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Also find the discount code for Demo Video Lab's Workshop (only good through Monday).

Running a campaign? Schedule a Funding Fridays Broadcast.

Watch more Kickstarter tips from Diani & Devine.

Hear about these events as they happen via @CindyMarieJ