This is part of a series of posts where I look back at the process of running a Kickstarter. The steps we took, the mistakes we made, and a bunch of other things I wish I had known.
Other Kickstarter Reflections Posts
The preparation was the most important thing. The more you have planned out, the more you can anticipate, then the more you can adjust when things go sideways (like they already had before).
When I launched the Gilded Age Kickstarter, I had my master list from having helped out on the Route 3 campaign. What no one will tell you, or maybe what no one really understands is that assisting on a Kickstarter and running your own is like… is like doing something Hard and then doing something impossible! They say that running your own Kickstarter is very much like having a second job, and while that is close to what it is like, I’d compare it more to an extra part-time job. Because, for all the preparing you’d done prior to pushing the button to launch your campaign, there is a whole other aspect to the campaign which begins to reveal itself.
But I’ve jumped ahead. Here was my list of things (from another email) to do prior to the actual launch (about 3 weeks out):
I’d started a Steampunk Fridays blog on this site in order to get some eyeballs on their work and get my own name out there a little bit. This meant either finding Kickstarters which fit the theme or getting interviews with the creators. At that point, I’d reached out to 4 or 5 Steampunk Creators about interviews and then send on questions to those that had responded.
Since I was waiting, I needed to figure out my Steampunk Friday post for the week.
Needed to do my weekly blog post.
Needed to finish the first draft of the Kickstarter Page. I’d done a bunch of the basic stuff, but was still figuring out exactly what images to upload, how to arrange things, etc. Then I needed to send out the link to some trusted people to get feedback on the page. This was honestly the single biggest thing I had to do as each section had various images and each image had to be manipulated in order to fit correctly on the Kickstarter page.
Needed to create a handful of Kickstarter images for promotional purposes.
I was still debating the Rewards (both with the other Terminus guys and in my head).
There was an online Kickstarter hour video I needed to watch (which I’m pretty sure was from Tyler over at ComixLaunch – which if you haven’t had a chance to check out his podcast and you are thinking about doing a Kickstarter… well, you are missing out on a ton of great information).
Contact the artists on the project and get them to send in their Bios. If you’ve dealt with creative types you know this will end up being akin to herding cats.
At this point, the last couple of pages were being lettered, and that meant getting those pages to him (his computer was acting up, so this required traveling into the city).
Of course, I also was trying to identify places online where I might be able to spread the word. Whether it was blogs, websites, Facebook pages, Twitter accounts, and any other places I could think of. A master list was beginning to take shape at this point.
All of that, and I hadn’t even launched yet. And I still had regular life commitments like work and family.
John McGuire is the creator/author of the steampunk comic The Gilded Age. The Trade paperback collecting the first 4 issues is finally back from the printers! If you would like to purchase a copy, go here!
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He can also be found at www.johnrmcguire.com