YOU WILL LEARN:
- A strategy on contacting press
- Paid advertising with Facebook, Instagram, Adwords
- The best way to prepare for a Kickstarter campaign
- Why patience is a huge asset during the planning stages
- Why you should, and shouldn’t launch a Kickstarter campaign
- Free tools to determine the traffic to different websites
Backers – 1900
Amount Raised – $53,375
WHO ARE WE INTERVIEWING?
Laurent Etienne, 25-year-old American entrepreneur who was born and raised in Switzerland. Laurent studied in New York and returned home to finish his bachelor’s degree in Geneva. During that time he came up with the idea for “Intelligent Security Camera Cover” (ISCC). Why? Because Laurent decided it was time to take control and work for himself.
- Got the idea from a YouTube documentary about the NSA and spying.
- Also noticed a lot of his friends using tape, stickers, etc.. to cover their webcams.
- The ISCC is only 0.7 mm thick to ensure your laptop will close perfectly.
- Laurent opted for a 60-day campaign.
- After 13 days Laurent has already raised $48k and pulled in over 1,700 backers.
- Laurent grades his success based off a similar campaign he had seen on Kickstarter. Laurent reviewed this campaign and set out to make his campaign better. From the copy on the page, to the images all the way to the video.
- Laurent recommends starting to build your campaign weeks, months, years in advance. That way you can step away and come back to your campaign as needed with a fresh set of eyes to make the changes you need.
- Laurent actually started working on his campaign in January 2016.
- It’s important to remember that Laurent has handled this campaign solo with the exception of outsourcing the crowdfunding video.
- When running a crowdfunding project, always ensure you don’t have overheads that will end up costing you money in the end. Especially if you just barely reach your goal.
- Laurent waited until after the first few days of his Kickstarter launch to turn on the paid ads.
- Currently, Laurent is spending $10-$15 a day on Facebook, Instagram & Google Adwords.
- Laurent is launching YouTube ads shortly and currently is paying around $0.18 cents a click. The average backer for ISCC is spending $28 on his Kickstarter campaign.
QUESTION: What is the one thing you wish you knew before launching your Kickstarter campaign?
How to contact the press in the best way possible. Because I know that I made a lot of mistakes in the beginning of the campaign. I blasted emails to a lot of the press but they were a little bit too generic. They weren’t personal, I was talking to people. They were seeing it more as a spam message. So I thought if I knew more about how to communicate with the press I maybe would’ve had more features on websites. Which I think is a very important aspect.
Later I did learn from my mistakes. I started contacting press, and different websites trying to be more personable. I begin explaining a little bit of my story and what I was looking for. Not pushing anything. Communicating in a very respectful way and asking if they would be glad to feature my product in exchange for me featuring their website on my crowdfunding campaign. And I would put a live link to their website. This way I was able to find a couple websites to feature my product.
I wanted to thank GearHungry, it’s a website that featured me. I received 70 backers just from them. All I had to do was feature their logo on my crowdfunding campaign and put a live link to their website. Those kind of things are better than paid advertising. You get a lot of backers depending on the website. You have to select the right websites obviously. You can prioritize websites that have more visitors per month. There are tools on the web like SimilarWeb that allow you to analyze how many visits and the different traffic that websites have. So you look at those and you compare the different opportunities and you try and select the best ones. This one (GearHungry) had about 250K visitors per month so it was an important one. So it turns out this one really brought a lot of backers to my campaign as well compared to what Kickstarter who brings the most.
QUESTION: Best tip for anyone listening hoping to run their own successful crowdfunding campaign?
The Best advice is to not try to run a campaign. Focus on something that the people would be glad to crowdfund, something that would interest people. Because if you’re just going to try and make money; well the goal in life is to at least make some money to try and live decently. But if you’re going to try and just put something on that you haven’t really worked on, or thought about in detail. Then you probably won’t have any success.
Crowdfunding is more about helping new innovative projects to launch on the market. So it’s important to really have the right product or the right idea that’s authentic. So be authentic about what you’re trying to do. If you really want to bring something important to the public or if you just want to try and make some money, it will tell on your campaign. It will tell because you’re thinking about it and as a result, you’re working on your campaign and it reflects how your thought process is on your campaign. And that’s usually how unsuccessful campaigns end up being unsuccessful. They didn’t really have the motivation to bring something good. They’re trying to make money. That’s what I think is important to look at before you try to launch any type of crowdfunding campaign.
Marketing company mentioned in our interview – http://www.latelier-marketing.com/
Video production website – https://www.videopixie.com/