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Archived Author Help > Crowd Funding? Kickstarter etc. How had it worked for people?

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message 1: by Briony (new)

Briony Smith | 28 comments Hello, everyone :)

I'm not sure I will but I'm considering a crowdfunding campaign for my second book (or first's audio version). I've search through here and found some of you have used kickstarter and stuff so thought I could ask for some advice. Examples of what kind of things you guys offered for pledge rewards, which sites you used (indiegogo etc), how you advertised it, how successful you were.

Any words of wisdom for those like me who might be considering it.

Thank you :)

message 2: by Shoshanah (new)

Shoshanah Shear (shoshanahs) | 16 comments I've tried doing a crowdfundraiser. Was not successful at all. Did not even help to create interest.

If anyone else has tips to make a successful campaign, I'm interested in hearing. In the meantime I'm working on freelance writing to earn what I need to promote my books

message 3: by Yvonne (new)

Yvonne Carder | 3 comments Hey Briony,

I am curious what other people's experiences were with this too. I'm currently running a Kickstarter that I made the goal 30 days and a lofty goal of $2000. I've got 10 days left and have $575 in pledges so far. My author platform is still very small, so for me this is going well. My motto is 'Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you'll land among the stars!

My only 'regret' is that I didn't do more research before diving right in and starting the campaign. I assumed all crowdfunding sites were the same, but apparently not. I went with Kickstarter, since it was a name I was familiar with. One of the negatives is that it is an 'all or nothing' situation. You either raise your full goal by the deadline you give your campaign, or you get none of the funds pledged. Terrifying to think you put a lot of effort in and it's possible that the support you got from people will not get to you. Although, this terror is getting me to break out of my introvert shell and connect more and spread the word.

If you'd like to see what happens with my campaign in 'real time' you can check it out here: go to Kickstarter and search for my name Yvonne Carder. It's my only campaign and you can see what worked or what didn't. I had a very uncatchy photo originally, and my video was way too long (originally it was 14 mins, now I have one that is only 2 1/2 mins). I asked friends for feedback (and I'm still doing that) and updating as I go. I've seen more traffic and pledges listening to my friends advice.

I would love to hear from other authors that may have tried other crowdfunding sites. I know some don't do the all for nothing, and I'm thinking if this first attempt fails I might try one of the other sites.


message 4: by Briony (new)

Briony Smith | 28 comments Yvonne wrote: "Hey Briony,

I am curious what other people's experiences were with this too. I'm currently running a Kickstarter that I made the goal 30 days and a lofty goal of $2000. I've got 10 days left and h..."

Ooh thank you for the tips I was really hoping for someone to show an example :) I'm really impressed by the three $100 backers you have, I wonder if that's the power of the signed print copy.

Sorry to quiz you more, but what did you do to connect with people and get the campaign noticed more?

message 5: by Lisa (new)

Lisa Eley | 14 comments Hello Briony,

I was unsuccessful with Kickstarter, and may never try crowdsourcing again. I did the research, looked at examples, and had a very themed and creative reward structure. Minimum pledge of $10 and limited maximum pledges between $100-$250. I ran it for 30 days and only wanted a return on the freelance costs that I paid. What Kickstarter did was open me up to a lot of spammers who promised to bring in the pledges for a fee. I declined them all. To date I've had decent sales and it's still early. I'm not disappointed. Good luck Briony!

message 6: by Yvonne (new)

Yvonne Carder | 3 comments Briony wrote: "Yvonne wrote: "Hey Briony,

I am curious what other people's experiences were with this too. I'm currently running a Kickstarter that I made the goal 30 days and a lofty goal of $2000. I've got 10 ..."

Hey Briony, no problem, I don't mind sharing at all since it's a work in progress.

First of all, I totally agree with Lisa's post, I did get a lot of spam asking to share for a fee. I've said no to all of them, or just plain ignored them. However, I did go to see what they were advertising to see if I could steal ideas and use them myself. And I have. =)

So far this is what I've done:

1: Created multiple levels for people to donate at with different rewards that I thought would be cool. Don't discount having a larger tier in case there is someone who wants to donate a larger sum and really support you.

2: I sent out an email to the people on my author email list. Don't be too impressed, I have less than 20 people on that list so far. But I'm working on it.

3: I have a free short story that I created and have to share with anyone and everyone! It was 2 chapters from my book that I loved, but they didn't move the story forward. I put it together and it's about 20 pages total. I purchased a premade cover (that I love) and am using Bookfunnel to get it out there. Using that cover I created a fun business card that I am giving to all my friends and family.

4: I created posts on Facebook to share with my friends that included a video and quick blurbs about the book. Once I found some posts that were engaging, I boosted them with Facebook ads.

5: Totally had to step out of my comfort zone and talk *gasps* to people about what I'm up to.

6: and this is the idea I stole: One of the promoters websites said that they would send messages/emails to all of my contacts with me creating the message. I found that funny, because why would I pay for someone to do that when I can do it myself. One of the biggest things that it said was to ask for peoples feedback on the campaign instead of being like 'please give me money' which I really didn't want to do. I genuinely wanted feedback and for people to share my campaign. I was amazed by the results of sending emails to a fraction of my Facebook friends. I made each a little personal, but used a basic letter to send to my friends. I was amazed by the feedback that I was getting and implemented a lot of what they suggested. The biggest was changing my video from the 14 minutes (yup that's right 14 minutes) to a quicker more eye catching one that is now 2.5 minutes long. I'm still working on my list to catch everyone, but since I did that I have gotten all but $65 of my pledges from this. It's been amazing.

7: Lastly, I'm working on the campaign constantly now. Whether it's reaching out on Facebook or seeing where else I can spread the word I'm doing that. I just contacted my local writer's group and they had a flyer at our meeting for people to check it out.

I hope this helps. If you would like more info you can send me an email and we can talk. I'd be happy to share. =) And this is by no means everything there is to know, since I've obviously never done one of these before I'm sure there is much more info out there that can blow the lid off of a crowdfunding campaign.


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