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Do you think Kickstarter campaigns can work for people without a big online following or other connections?
Kickstarter-funded projects seem to be the next big craze for authors. Like every new craze, we’re hearing about major success stories, like Jordan Stratford who raised over $91,000 for his steampunk novel and landed himself offers from every one of the big six. When Lindsay Buroker asked Jordan Startford about his online presence in this interview, he acknowledged he had only a small online following. However, he had major offline connections in related communities and he knew people with major online connections in his genre.
LM Preston's profile photoMarcy Kennedy's profile photoNobilis Reed's profile photoChrysoula Tzavelas's profile photo
Worked for me. I raised a few hundred dollars to give my novella a great cover image.  I have a fairly small network (a thousand or so) but they came through.
Well... yeah.  I mean, a personal network (that is, just the folks you actually know personally) might be a few hundred. Anyone could be expected to have that... that's your baseline.  
+Chrysoula Tzavelas I've read in a couple of places that what agents consider a solid platform is 10,000+ monthly visitors to your website or blog and 500+ Facebook connections. I'm not sure about the other social media sites.
+Nobilis Reed I'm really glad you chimed in since you've tried it. Did you give something away to the people who donated?
Yes, it depends on the way the project is presented I think.
A good video is VITAL.  And don't discount the fact that when people back a kickstarter, they immediately can become PART of the platform to support it!  They want it to succeed or they wouldn't have backed it.
Jordan Startford made a good point in the interview (and +Nobilis Reed's campaign in a good example of this) about how you need to let people know you're raising money for something concrete. This isn't about you being able to quit your job and live off the money while you're writing. What people "invest" is going for a cover, or to create an audio book, etc., and as an investor, they'll receive something in compensation.
Out of curiousity, +Nobilis Reed  can you provide evidence of a good video being vital? I know that Kickstarter makes that claim but I'd love to see their statistics broken down across types of projects. It's always weirded me out to have videos with publishing projects.
Yeah.  My first week, I had a crap video.  I got NOTHING.  I replaced it the second week in, and the backers came in thick and fast.
I know, anecdotal evidence isn't information, it's data, but I'm sure the Kickstarter people have actual statistics.
I really do appreciate the anecdote! I just don't understand it and would like more data. Maybe I should write to the KS people and ask them for a break down by genre, although even that wouldn't actually provide an explanation... just more  concrete evidence
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