THE PRE-LAUNCH CHECKLIST FOR CROWDFUNDING ARTISTS
A handy guide for the month before your campaign
By Noah Blumenson-Cook
Crowdfunding for your project is one of the most exciting, stressful, and rewarding ways to spend a month of your life. But what about the month leading up to your campaign?
Before you start, you need to understand the fundamentals of crowdfunding. Know what you're getting into. Crowdfunding is much more than a way to get funding for your idea. At its core, it's an exercise in trust. When your potential backers find out about your project, they need to trust that it's worth putting money into, that you'll deliver the project you're describing, and that backing your campaign will be a positive and rewarding experience for them.
So without further ado, here's the basic checklist of the things you need to have in place before the big launch day.
FOUR WEEKS TO GO
- Clear your schedule
The best thing you can do for yourself in this first week is give yourself as much breathing room as possible, especially if this is your first campaign. If you've got other projects cooking, now is the time to make sure they won't interfere with your campaign prep.
- Create your content plan
You're going to be pushing out a lot of communication via your website, social media and mailing list. Getting a schedule together early takes a lot of stress out of the equation!
- Choose your rewards
It's important to be able to feature your rewards prominently in your video, your reachouts and the page itself. Get your rewards ready as far in advance as possible to give yourself a great head start.
- Shoot your video
The more time you can leave yourself for writing, shooting and editing your video, the better. We recommend having all the footage ready to go no less than a month before your launch date.
THREE WEEKS OUT
- Start talking about it!
It's time to announce your project and activate that content plan. Announce your project on your website, social media, and mailing list. If you're not excited yet, you should be!
- Secure early backers
This is the week to start reaching out one-on-one to your potential early backers. The more people you have ready to back your project as soon is goes live, the better your chances of success.
- Edit your video
By now, you should have the video footage, audio, images, and testimonials in place for an amazing crowdfunding video. This is the week you start putting it all together.
- Get your page content ready
For your crowdfunding page, you're going to need a solid design, images, text, and your final reward structure. By the end of this week, all those elements should be done and ready to go.
TWO MORE WEEKS
- Secure ambassadors
If you've built relationships with press outlets, bloggers and other artists, now is the time to make sure they're ready to help you get the word out during your campaign.
- Reach out to higher-level patrons
If you have rewards in the $500+ range, chances are you already know the people who are going to back at that level. Get in touch and make sure you're giving them the best possible experience!
- Finish your video
No crowdfunding campaign is complete without a short, compelling video. Complete any final details this week so you can move on to the next step.
- Build your crowdfunding page
Get all that juicy content into the system! By the end of this week your crowdfunding page should be complete and ready for review.
THE FINAL COUNTDOWN
- Platform review
Platforms like Kickstarter offer a review process that needs to be completed before you can launch. This takes 2-3 business days, so submit your campaign at the start of this week to leave time for any changes that need to be made.
- Find an impartial eye
This is also a great time to let a trusted friend or two review your page as well. The more feedback you can get before you launch, the better your campaign will be.
- Activate your early backers
It's time to get your backers on board and ready to go. Getting a head start on day one is vital to the success of any campaign, so make sure you're setting yourself up for success.
- Throw a virtual party
We're serious! A virtual event is one of the best things you can do to inject life and energy into your campaign, and there's no better time than launch day.
We hope this gives you a solid idea of what to expect when you're expecting (to launch a crowdfunding campaign!) Good luck!