Friday, April 5, 2013

30 Hours To Go On My First Kickstarter Project - A Pre Post-Mortem

My first Kickstarter project, for my card game Widget, will end at 1758 on Saturday April 6 -- about 30 hours from now. The chart below shows the progress to date.

Most people wait until after it is all over to capture their thoughts about the process. I wanted to do something a bit different: Capture my thoughts just before the project ended and then compare these impressions to my more considered ones after the campaign was over.

Widget - The Card Game That Lets You Play With Your Words -- Kicktraq Mini

Best Surprise: The level of support from all sorts of people - many of whom I don't know (or didn't know until this project began). Family, friends, former students, colleagues, other game designers(!), artists, and people I have never met from countries I have never visited have helped get Widget to its goal and well over it. I absolutely love this aspect of Kickstarter! It is incredibly rewarding to work directly with the people most interested in the game. 

Worst Surprise: My level of exhaustion. I am tired, folks -- bone tired. While eminently rewarding, this process has worn me out both physically and emotionally much more than I expected. It is kind of like having your first child. You have no idea what to expect next and your "baby" keeps throwing surprises at you. 

Most Interesting Finding: My total inability to use Twitter to help generate pledges. I spent a lot of time on Twitter and got extraordinarily good responses from people - lots of re-tweets and some interesting conversations. 100s of thousands of people have received tweets about Widget at this point. Return on time invested? 4 pledges, $65. While I am not discounting the intangible value of the experience, it is clear I am either "doing it wrong" (likely), Twitter can't really help in this way (hmmm...), or Twitter can't really help at all (unlikely but possible). Something I intend to think hard about... 

My next steps are to make it through the next 30 hours or so and then get the game printed and out the door. And yes, I am already working on my next project!

1 comment:

Brad Sweet said...

First, congratulations on Widget's imminent successful funding. Your dedication and innovation in finding ways to raise awareness of the opportunity (whilst avoiding over-saturation of the audience) has been a great example to those of us who can see a Kickstarter in our own futures.

Regarding the apparent lack of Twitter-generated pledges, I'd say you've documented something many of us have suspected about Twitter vs. other social networks (i.e., Facebook). While Twitter is an excellent means for information discovery (links to news articles/geeky tidbits, RUMINT, etc..), it does not instill the same kind of socially-transmitted trust that FB or even LinkedIn convey. If a FB friend says they supported a Kickstarter project, that probably has a much higher chance of persuading someone else to consider doing so as well versus a Tweet.