by Helena Kaufman
Guidance Before You Go Public with Your Project
There is that magnificent leap you must make in your planning whose chasm borders the creative concept and the market in whose hands the final product will be purchased and appreciated.
Your leap needn’t be made alone. In fact it’s best interests to ‘try it out’ on what we call in the work of writing, “friendly readers.”
These are people you call on for guidance with all the details and decisions along the way. Ideally, they will understand you and your creative efforts and can be counted on to give you a fair hearing with tact and honesty. They should not be inclined to the extremes of telling you whatever they think you want to hear for fear of hurting you, nor of the sort to stomp on you with criticism severe enough to snuff out your spirit because they think it’s what is needed or perhaps have a hidden agenda.
Happily, Kickstarter offers valuable guidance on review of your project before you post, or go public. You are requested to share your project. This ensures that it fits into the guidelines and that it will take best advantage of the platform. While your creativity often feels unique and deserving of its own life, a quick look at projects that have been accepted in the past, and in particular, were successful in raising funds is a good idea. There are times in the marketing of our ideas that fitting in is as important as standing out.
- You benefit in fitting in to a business model and defining a project and stating its goals:
- You help your potential supporters to understand your vision – from beginning to its necessary end
- You figure out early what your most ‘saleable’ point are to differentiate you and your work
- You learn to engage your audience early
These are all smart marketing moves in any format. While the process of justifying and of clarifying your vision feels burdensome to some creative people, it does help you get an early jump on connecting to your immediate supporters and to the ultimate extenders of your success – collectors, distributors and customers.
The gentle merge from compliance with basics of business to the marketing lane, requires asking similar questions to establish the best route:
- What do I produce? Product or experience?
- Who will value it most?
- Why is it different? Important? Beautiful? Essential?
Understanding how your creativity is perceived helps you establish value and therefore pricing. We’ve at the moment where you must ask a “real world” realistic price from either your Kickstart backers on your rewards, or your actual daily customers.
Kickstart statistics bear out that small is successful. Most popular pledges are $25.00, while the average is $70.00. Projects with a reward under $20 succeed more than half of the time.
So, before we get too many horses ahead of the (shopping) cart, we’ll next examine how to add the human touch to technology that connects creator and customer.
Be in touch,
Helena Kaufman is a writer and communications trainer. In 1982, success at promoting, marketing and writing about 200 artisans launched Helena as an event publicist. The designers who sold at the Annual Manitoba Christmas Craft Sale exhibited original functional and decorative pieces in fibre, pottery, metal, oil, paper, wood, distinctive wearable art and more. Helena worked to raise their profile, bring media attention and increase their sales. She now shares some of that savvy in the Artisan Ally series. Helena’s writing and communications site can be found here.