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Simple Kickstarter Launch Checklist

Published by Salvador Briggman. Find him on Twitter.

You’re almost ready to go live on Kickstarter!

It’s been weeks, if not months of work, and you’re finally ready to launch your campaign.

Exciting, eh?

But, wait up.

I want to make sure that you’ve doing everything possible to maximize your chances of success.

After all, you don’t want to fail to raise funds in front of your friends and family.

This simple Kickstarter launch checklist will make sure that you’re 100% ready to announce your project to the world!

1. You’ve factored in shipping costs and fees. This is one of the big surprises that upsets many new crowdfunding campaigners. You don’t want to end up realizing that shipping is going to cost more than you anticipated, or that you haven’t raised enough funds!

2. You know that you must plan to bring 30% of your goal. This is the amount that’s required to jumpstart the fundraising process. You’re not going to get 100% of your funds from strangers who are just browsing the Kickstarter platform.

3. You’ve built up an email list of interested backers. This is the most common way that campaigns will receive a spike in pledges within the first few days of launching on Kickstarter. You can create a landing page with Leadpages to begin to get initial signups.

4. Your video isn’t too long. When it comes to online videos, we all have about a 3 minute attention span. Unless your video is super engaging or you have a devoted community, I wouldn’t recommend going much longer.

5. You’re aware of the Kickstarter Slump. This refers to the common period where most Kickstarter campaigns lose momentum. Projects will typically see a spike in pledges in the beginning and at the end of their campaign.

6. You’ve reached out to journalists, bloggers, and influencers in your niche. You’re going to reach out to these individuals leading up to the launch of your Kickstarter campaign using some of the techniques that I outline here.

7. You’ve spent a little with Facebook ads. It takes time to learn how to use Facebook ads. Leading up to your campaign, you can spend as little as $5 per day to begin to test out ads and build your email list. This will help you see which creatives and audiences are working best.

8. You have high quality photos. You have to show potential backers how they can use your product. You can showcase the product in different environments. You can also show how people are using it.

9. You’ve researched similar campaigns. You don’t have to re-invent the wheel. Look at how similar campaigns are laid out. Do they share their story? How do they present their product? Take a look at their “community tab.”

10. You’ve set aside an advertising budget. Most Kickstarter campaigns now a days set aside an advertising budget to get more backers to their campaign page. Whether it’s Facebook ads or other services, having an advertising budget will help you stand out in your category.

11. You’re aware of tax implications. For the most part, the pledges that you collect on Kickstarter are considered taxable income. Keep track of your expenses carefully.

12. You’ve written a compelling press release to send out. This press release and other assets will form the basis of a media kit. You can submit a press release here.

13. You’ve put together social media branding to spread awareness about your campaign. This is an easy way to notify your followers that you’re now live on Kickstarter. You can use something simple like Canva to create cover photos.

14. You’ve brainstormed stretch goals or add-ons. These are two simple ways to maintain momentum throughout your fundraising campaign.

15. You’ve thought out some updates or announcements to share. Most campaigns just sort of haphazardly post updates. Updates are actually a powerful way to rally backers and continue to motivate them to get your project funded. You could plan out a “secret” announcement.

16. You’ve studied what works for getting funding. Aside from this blog, there is also the Crowdfunding Demystified podcast, our YouTube channel, our free online forum, the Kickstarter Launch Formula book, and more. There are many resources to go about learning the strategies and techniques that will get you funding. The best of all is our free intro course.

17. You’re willing to fail. You might not successfully raise funds the first time. Many of the creators I’ve spoken with actually failed the first time they launched a campaign. Then, they re-configured it, learned a bit more, and re-launched. They ended up being successful!

This entire experience is a learning process. Of course, you should do everything in your power to get it right the first time, but don’t think that you have to. You can always come back to Kickstarter and launch another project.

I hope this checklist has been helpful! If you have any questions, don’t forget to leave a comment down below.

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