The League of Gamemakers brings you more Kickstarter tips! In our series, Kickstarter Questions, we’ve asked the same 7 questions of project creators who have started and finished a campaign to discover the best practices and common paths to success.
Our next set of questions was posed to Erik Dahlman of Albino Dragon. Erik is certainly a pro at this Kickstarter thing now, having launched 11 successful Kickstarters and raised over $1,000,000. That’s worth repeating, in bold: 11 projects, $1,000,000+
Here are a few of his tips:
7 KICKSTARTER QUESTIONS
WHAT ARE THE MOST COST EFFECTIVE ADVERT OUTLETS YOU’VE FOUND TO DRIVE FOLKS TO YOUR CAMPAIGN?
There are two that we always use: Kicktraq.com and Facebook.
Kicktraq has a very targeted user base that is already predisposed to backing Kickstarter projects. And the last time I checked, if your campaign doesn’t fund, they’ll run your ads again if you relaunch later.
Facebook isn’t quite as reliable as it used to be. You now have to boost even your own posts so that users that have already liked your page can see it. I know before you used to only get a fraction of them anyway, but that number is much lower now after their advertising changes. And as far as the ads go, I tend to see them multiple times on my own feed so I wonder who else is actually getting them (or if they just target me).
Outside of those, good old fashioned word of mouth is the best way to get going. If you have backers that are excited about your project, many of them will want to share it with others as well.
NAME YOUR FAVORITE WAY TO ENGAGE BACKERS.
My favorite is when we get to meet backers at various conventions we attend during the year. During a project though, we really like to run Google Hangouts whenever possible.
It’s cool to be able to get real-time feedback about the products we are creating. It also gives a bit of insight into the creative process, which I don’t think a lot of companies are going to show you.
WHEN DO YOU KNOW YOUR GAME IS READY FOR KICKSTARTER?
When it comes to games (or really anything involving design) I never feel like it’s ready. Our latest game we’ve been play testing for over a year and it’s gone through a lot of iterations to make sure it’s the best game it can be.
So for us, it’s when the rules are easy to explain and after doing a demo everyone at the table wants to know when they can buy it.
WHAT IS YOUR ACTION PLAN FOR AFTER A CAMPAIGN ENDS?
The end of a campaign is really just the start of the rest of hard stuff. The boring stuff. We typically already have our contracts ready to go and a lot of art assets created so it’s fairly linear as far as production goes.
And we’re always thinking about fulfillment. The more of that you can knock out early, the better off you’ll be, so definitely don’t wait until the last minute to figure out how you’re going to handle it.
WHAT IS SOMETHING YOU WOULD DO DIFFERENTLY ON YOUR NEXT CAMPAIGN?
WHAT 3 TIPS WOULD YOU GIVE A NEW PROJECT CREATOR?
WHAT’S KICKING AROUND IN THE NEXT YEAR?
1 BONUS QUESTION, JUST FOR FUN
IF KICKSTARTER WAS A WILD ANIMAL, WHAT ANIMAL WOULD THAT BE AND WHAT TECHNIQUE WOULD YOU USE TO TAME SUCH A CREATURE?
Erik Dahlmann cites that he was introduced to Kickstarter in September of 2011 and fell in love with the community. It shows in all of his campaigns and google hangouts. His company, Albino Dragon, has this formula: Crowd sourced funding + Great Art and Design + Your feedback = Games the way they should be.
Right now, they have a Kickstarter campaign for a Ghostbusters deck of cards, that funds Friday, September 19.
More Kickstarter Questions here!
If you have crowdfunded a successful campaign and would like to participate in our KS Questions, send us an email! – we’d love to hear and publish your answers and tips.