Kickstarter: If I Can Do It THEN OMG So Can You

Listen up, I've successfully funded A ONE Kickstarter so I'm basically an expert now so here are my tips & tricks. Feel free to take notes but please keep in mind if you follow this advice and you still don't get your project funded I am not liable and my Dad's a judge so you can try to sue me but you won't win.

Tip #1: You better have a good idea. 
If you don't have a concept for something people want then Kickstarter isn't going to work. This seems obvious, but I feel the need to point it out just in case!

Tip #B: Look at other campaigns for inspiration.
I probably shouldn't have to mention this, but I mean the ones that have been funded. See what other campaigns that share a similar project in common and DON'T COPY but replicate what they have done in your own voice and style. If you are an artist, you should be well versed in this technique so do that. Check out what people have done in terms of rewards and pricing and even formatting their page. You don't have to invent the wheel, it's been done and the information is there so eat it up and poop out a nice, shiny little Kickstarter nugget that people will want to give money to!

Tip 3: Find out how much money you need. (AKA not the fun part)
Read reviews, ask your social media followers, do whatever you need to do to find the best and most affordable manufacturers for whatever it is you are trying to get made. For me, I had to email a dozen different enamel pin makers to finally find the one that was perfect for me! This part is not fun and you won't like it but you have to figure out how much money you need to ask for so you gotta do it. I ended up needing about $1200 total. That includes the cost of pins, shipping supplies, and things like that. This doesn't have to be an exact science, but if you want to be profitable with your goal then finding out exactly how much you need PLUS the Kickstarter fees is important. Since this was my first campaign I decided to ask for $1300 so that extra $100 covered any bad math on my end. I was nervous about asking for too much and not getting funded, so a lot of that has to do with your confidence in your project and how many people you think will be interested in funding it.

Tip #C-F: Come up with your pledge rewards.
Make sure you have a range of prices and rewards YOU CAN KEEP UP WITH. Oh, and don't give away too much of what you are asking to get made! I suggest started with a donation amount of $10-$15 with just a "thank you for helping make my dreams come true!" And moving up every $20 amount or so. So I had stickers and prints made of the same designs (which my own dollars) before my enamel pin Kickstarter so I used those as giveaways as well so they could keep my pin losses at a minimum. I suggest using other things to pad for giveaways BUT remember people are funding this project because they like what you are trying to get made, so don't over do it because people won't pledge if they aren't getting what they want. As you move up to the higher pledges ($70+) I would consider offering something special. For my project I offered hand-drawn portraits! People like personalized stuff!

Tip #100: Social media is your BEST FRIEND.
Once you've gone over your project a million times to check for errors or whatever, publish that bad boy! I've read publishing on a Wednesday afternoon is the best time? But who knows, that's what I did but it may make little difference, I'm no expert on that stuff. Remember to periodically post updates and reminders on every social media outlet you can. I stuck to the holy trinity: Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. Make sure as many people are aware of your project without coming off as spammy.

Tip #IDK: You got funded! YAY! Now what?
You wait! My project was funded with 3 weeks left (which sounds braggy, and it is, but it just made me ANXIOUS to get started) so I just had to sit and wait. BUT, remember to send out a big thank you and let your followers and the people who funded know your project was a success! Send out a survey for your funders to fill out to get their address and whatever information you may need before shipping their rewards. Order your stuff and start addressing envelopes and get ready to make friends at the post office! 

Tip Z: Don't be afraid.
What is the worst that could happen? Like honestly. Your project doesn't get funded? So what, you get a little embarrassed and your ego goes soft. It's fine, it happens to everybody. It wasn't a complete loss, you learned what not to do so you can figure your stuff out for the next one!

That's it! So if you want money for a rad project you believe in AND people will believe in as well, then just do a dang Kickstarter! JUST DO IT.

P.S. I am 100% sure I missed some stuff so if you have any further questions leave them in the comments below!


Creating Stuff Feels Good. Alternate Title: NOT Creating Stuff Feels Bad.


Alright let's dim the lights and talk about something real, kids: self-esteem. We all have it! Some days are good self-esteem days and some are bad, blah blah whatever this isn't some anti-depression pamphlet. We all know what self-esteem is and most of us are sad most of the time who cares. That's what millennial absurdist self-deprecating meme humor is for. What I want to talk about is how feeling bad can be directly linked to how we feel as artists - or as I will never refer to myself again - CREATIVES. LOL.

Okay get ready for this next thing because it is going to blow your minds. EVERYONE WANTS ATTENTION. We all love it. I know it's like super fun to talk shit about Instagram models and Youtubers - or whatever millennial nonsense things baby boomers HATE - for craving attention but omg who cares we all crave attention, it is literally the thing that fuels our self-esteem meter and it's not a new concept. Ever since Caveman Dave ripped that big neanderthal fart to impress his BOYFRIEND Caveman Greg - yes, cave people were GAY. GET OVER IT - our attention-needy society was born.

As an artist, creating dumb stuff is what makes me feel good. It replenishes my self-esteem meter. So that's all well and good, yay I figured that out. Good job, me. THE PROBLEM IS when I either do not want to create anything, or I cannot create anything GOOD. Then, boom I feel like an absolute turd. And I mean a bad one, like when you forgot your dairy pill and decided to roll the dice and eat that cheese anyway and cut to you on the toilet, straining a little more than you know you should just to plop out that little brown nugget, still feeling full of that dairy poison. Sorry, I got a little lost in that metaphor there. 

So what do you do? Force yourself to make something that you could end up hating? Just try to chill out and tell yourself it's okay to have Bad Art Days and do nothing? Well, yes and yes. Actually, I don't know, I'm not even sure what my point is anymore. It's just a weird thing and it's frustrating and I'm trying to make myself feel better by typing these virtual words into the internet void because I'm probably not going to create any art today so at least I'm being productive in some way. OH YEAH, okay I'm back. Productivity! Just do SOMETHING. If you know your self-esteem is wrapped up in whether or not you are doing something YOU deem as "productive" them omg just do it. We are just flesh beans wobbling around on this big blue space rock trying to validate our existence, so do that thing and feel good. Do a thing and post it on your socials for those internet likes because you know it will make you feel good.

What have we learned today? CREATING stuff feels good and NOT CREATING stuff feels bad. Oh, that's it. I guess I could have just said that.