A few weeks ago I interviewed Dale Backus, Founder of ohsnap, the phone grip that doesn’t suck. Ohsnap raised over $600k between Kickstarter and Indiegogo and you can read their interview and learn more about crowdfunding advice and Kickstarter campaign tips here!
In the Interview Dale discussed how he came up with the idea for ohsnap and gave some tips on pre-launch marketing, advertising for Kickstarter campaigns and some of the services he thought were most beneficial.
With regards to crowdfunding advice, he emphasizes how important it is to make sure you have a good product and shares some lessons learned from his Kickstarter campaigns and the things he might do differently next time.
No matter what, if you believe you have an actual good product and you’ve done everything possible to communicate effectively, you must continue to fight everyday for that top spot in popularity, because that’s where the most conversions will ultimately come from. Paid media though is a great way to validate your product. If you can’t get conversions at a reasonable price, then chances are your product isn’t good, you’re not targeting the right people, or you’re not communicating that products benefits well.
So much focus gets put on campaign execution, how you’re running ads, who you’re partnered with, etc. But not enough focus gets put on the product idea itself. One rule of thumb I use is this, before you launch a campaign, if possible, give prototypes to friends and family to use. Don’t force it on them and don’t hand hold them. Come back a week or two later and take the product away from them. If they don’t come complaining to you that they want it back or want a new one, then chances are you have a mediocre product.
This doesn’t necessarily mean your product will fail, as there are so many variables, but it’s a good place to start.
Also, one other thing to consider, is running a Kickstarter is a HUGE pain, and it’s public. So any successes or failures you have will be visible to everyone forever. Also, if I could do it again, i would have done 3 key things differently:
1 – I would have limited shipping availability to the US, Canada, Europe, Australia, Japan, etc. Would have avoided super obscure countries that are extremely expensive to ship to those countries represent a tiny percentage of sales but a much larger percentage of shipping costs.
2 – I would have run a 45 day campaign instead of 30. We closed KS at 460K after 30 days. We were consistently generating ~15k/day. So we left money on the table we may or may not be able to capture gong forward by running the shortest campaign possible.
3 – I would have been more conservative with shipping dates. Ohsnap will ship about a month later than we anticipated (which is fantastic on the Kickstarter scale), but the amount of backlash we received for this delay was way more than I would have figured. I think because I’m a long time backer of over 40 projects, I’m conditioned differently than the average person and I misjudged this.
If you enjoyed this, check out Dale’s full interview here – https://capitalist.io/ohsnap-crowdfunding-story/