Jan 21, 2020
My Goddesses of Winter enamel pin Kickstarter has ended and I'm so proud of what we've accomplished. Thanks to all of you who helped spread the word and encourage me here! You guys are my loudest fans and that injection of optimism is always appreciated.
I wanted to take a moment to analyze why this was my most successful Kickstarter to date! This may be a lot of tech talk, but I wanted to do this write-up to get my own thoughts in order, as well as share this info with my fellow artist-entrepreneurs here who might find this kind of data useful.
I had 156 Backers who helped raise 161% of my funding goal in just 5 days, which is 17 more Backers and 24% higher funding in far less time than the previous campaign, which took about 20 days to reach its funding goal.
My Most Popular Reward - The Early Bird Tier
The Early Bird set remains my most popular Reward as it allows folks to save money and encourages them to pledge early. Next in the ranking came the $40 set which I imagine was so popular because people love to get the small discount on the entire set.
It's important to note that the next most lucrative tier (but NOT my most popular one) was my Goddesses of Winter Collection which is the tier that came with all pins plus all prints. While I only had 9 Backers at this premium tier, the combined funds raised $720, which would have taken a lot longer to raise if I only relied on smaller low priced tiers. "Luxury" tiers seem like a must for campaigns with small items that have lower price tags which make it harder to reach that funding goal.
My Most Popular Pin - Lady of December
It's always intriguing me to know which pins are the most popular from these sets! This time around, the Lady of December pin proved the most popular. I suspect her birth month to be a popular one, while her design with its Saint Lucy influences presents an appealing theme for a pin.
Most Effective Promo
I changed methods this campaign from the Goddesses of Autumn Kickstarter by dropping Pinterest from my ad sources and instead focused on a higher paid per click ad budget for Facebook/Instagram instead. Despite my ad budget going primarily into Facebook/Instagram, the majority of my pledges came from the following places:
- Kickstarter - Most people pledged after Following my profile on Kickstarter, finding the project via recommendations/Discover, and me notifying past Backers of the pin campaign Updates that a new campaign was launched. There are so many ways Kickstarter notifies people who have already backed your projects via algorithms, which is a large reason why I love the platform!
- My Newsletter - The next greatest source of pledges was my mailing list of 491 contacts. I sent out 3 newsletters related to my campaign, a pre-launch hype email, a mid-campaign reminder, and a last chance reminder.
Total Ad Expenses - $88 (a lower budget than past campaigns, surprisingly!)
Pledges Earned Directly from Ads (Not counting mailing list pledges) - $131 ($383 if we count mailing list pledges)
I still believe paying for Facebook/IG ads to be effective, as many of the users funneled from my ads were directed to my mailing list first during the pre-launch period (accounting for the high mailing list pledges) and were no doubt brought into Kickstarter's ecosystem through the ads, plus the fact that I still made back my ad fees in the pledges that were directly brought in by paid promo.
The rest of users who saw my ads during the campaign were most likely funneled to Kickstarter via my ads, but instead of immediately pledging, they Saved the campaign for later or looked my project up later instead, which results in higher traffic being counted from within Kickstarter's infrastructure instead of my paid ads.
Social Media Promotion
I posted announcements about my campaign primarily through Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, with more direct art-sharing posts shared via Reddit. I've dropped Tumblr from my rotation to save time, as I believe many of their users have moved to Twitter instead.
While paid ads brought more direct pledges, I believe having these front-facing posts helped to remind people of important deadlines, plus give them an easy way to share word of my project and feel more personally connected to me in an artist-fan relationship. In an internet full of so many talented folks and cool shiny things, people need repetition and emotional connection as reminders.
I did not seek out influencers like other blogs to promote my posts this time as I have with my past Kickstarters. However, I believe a lot of my previous exposure on these influencer blogs have already brought fans to my list, which shows the value of doing this activity where possible.
Feel free to check out my Trello board for this campaign! As a single person biz, it's important for me to keep track of all the micro-tasks that go into this immense undertaking. My board collects important dates, including manufacturing tasks, promo deadlines, etc.
If you like Trello, feel free to use my Referral link to give me a little kickback which helps extend my Trello Gold sub with every referred signup!
I believe a combination of paid promotion and social media announcements played a large part in helping this Kickstarter succeed, but the work put into building up my audience via the mailing list as well as promoting via my landing page (which links to my mailing list) has paid off the most.
Additionally, the fact that this Kickstarter was presented as a series has created a following which is attracted to Collectible items. Many people have commented saying they are looking forward to a particular month's pin from a future set, and so they Follow along to make sure they don't miss out.
It feels like my results have begun to snowball the longer I have been running these Kickstarters and that's so satisfying to see!
I hope this write-up helps any of my fellows also on this journey with crowdfunding! It's an evolving process and not everybody's journey will be the same, but I hope this entry might give you some clarity of the grand intimidating process that is Kickstarter!