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Funding the Dream on Kickstarter
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Funding the Dream on Kickstarter

Author: Richard Bliss

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Over $1 Billion dollars has been pledged to Kickstarter campaigns since its launch in April of 2009. Traditionally a site for funding Film and Music, Kickstarter has become a great place for anyone with a dream to see them realized. With Kickstarter you don't need a publisher or a big company, just the courage to ask.
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In this episode of the podcast, Salvador Briggman interviews Chris O'Neal from Brotherwise Games on his most recent Kickstarter for Overlord: a Boss Monster Adventure.You'll learn about what goes into building a successful board game company, how to get funded on Kickstarter in 2020, along with some tips and tricks the team has picked up along the way. Links Mentioned on The ShowBecome a guest on the podacastOverlord: a Boss Monster AdventureBrotherwise GamesWant to become a podcast sponsor? Email: sbriggman@crowdcrux.com
Bobby Fiorentino launched the Kickstarter project "This Game Is A Disaster!" and raised  $8,420. He came on the show to share how he was able to do this, along with advice that he has for beginning board game entrepreneurs. Links Become a guest: http://fundingthedreamonkickstarter.com/Kickstarter: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/boardgameclub/this-game-is-a-disasterCoaching w/ Sal: https://www.crowdcrux.com/coachingThe Board Game Club FBBoard Game Club FB Group 
On this episode of the Funding the Dream on Kickstarter podcast, Salvador Briggman talks with James Takenaka, who has over 25 years of experience in the collectible and tabletop games industry. Apply to Be on the Show: Funding the Dream on KickstarterJames started selling at collectibles shows in 1990 and then was a co-owner of the Comix and Cardz Etc. hobby store. In 2001 he co-founded Hero Factory Inc. to produce licensed trading cards and served as a consultant for Bandai America Inc. in the collectible card game market.From 2007-2012 James served as Bandai’s Games Division Sales & Marketing Manager, working with hobby game distributors, overseeing their Organized Play Network and co-creating the Star Trek DBG. James joined  Hit Point Sales in March 2012.https://www.hitpointsales.com/about-us
On this episode, you'll learn an effective Kickstarter community-building strategy from Gamedec, a project that attracted 4,911 backers. In this game, you are a detective who solves crimes inside virtual worlds. Use your wits to gather info from your witnesses and suspects, getting to the bottom of deceptive schemes. The game continually adapts to your decisions and never judges. Salvador Briggman is the new host of the Funding the Dream on Kickstarter podcast.Links and Resources Mentioned: Become a guest on Funding the Dream on KickstarterGamedec Kickstarter Campaign
After eight years and more than 330 episodes, it is time to say good-bye on Funding the Dream.The podcast has been a fantastic way for me to meet some incredible people. It has also been a means for me giving back to a community that I believe in.In this last episode, I share a little behind the decision and how we got so far.Thank you to everyone over the years who have been so supportive and contributed their knowledge and experience to help those who listen.Hopefully, you've been inspired. I know I have.Thanks for listening, Take Care.
Salvador Briggman has been teaching people about crowdfunding for a long time. He is an author on crowdfunding, he produces a Youtube channel, as well as hosting the successul podcast, DeMystifying Crowdfunding.He joins as a guest on Funding the Dream to break down the basic elements of being successful before you launch your campaign. He provides excellent advice and is well worth listening and taking notes.Here's a link to Demystifying Crowdfunding
With more than 10 successful projects on Kickstarter, you can't always anticipate the sudden failure of a project. But what you can do, is learn and adapt. Brian Henk is the guest and co-founder of Pull the Plug games. You may also know him as the creator of the hit game, Good Cop/Bad Cop. He shares how a string of successes on Kickstarter suddenly became a short string of failures and how the experience taught him to pivot his expectations, adapt to his new understanding, and to launch again.It is always beneficial when guests open up about what went wrong. If you were to lose $40,000 on your next Kickstarter project and fail to fund, you would want to share that knowledge so others can avoid a similar fate. Brian does just that, teaching listeners what went wrong and how he adapted to the situation.His newest Kickstarter is called The ZORRO Dice Game. You can find it here
How do you choose a manufacturing partner in China for your Kickstarter project? You ask Josh Fairbairn.Josh delivers specific advice to help those looking to work with Chinese manufactures for the first time. His first piece of advice? Don't make a decision based on pricing. There are other, much more important qualifications rather than pricing.He qualifies this with an understanding that when you are creating a few thousand units, a few cents of savings is not going to help your project be successful, it will actually contribute to its failure. You will end up creating a bad product and have a bad experience.Instead, you must focus on four main areas to evaluate a manufacturer:Communication, Communication, Communication - Language, Culture, Distance, and Time Zones means the opportunity for misunderstandings are high. Become proficient with WeChat and watch your initial communications carefully for indications on problems that may arise in the future.Process - How they make the product and how they work with you to bring it to market are criticalQuality - This is where price focus can hurt you. Be sure to look for good quality in the early prototypes...if there is a problem with the prototype there will be a problem with the final productQuality Control - After you have signed off on everything, keep the communication going to ensure that the quality stays high through the entire manufacturing process.Josh shares other excellent pieces of wisdom and advice. If you are doing business in China I strongly recommend you reach out and connect. You can find Josh on Linkedin here: https://www.linkedin.com/in/joshuafairbairn/And his website is https://www.morphomfg.com/
Jessica Kelly has successfully crowdfunded $22,500 for her company, THR3EFOLD,  and has grown her company to be a leader in the ethical fashion space.Using crowdfunding to first scope her business with a trip to India, then using crowdfunding on iFundWomen.com, she stepped out on her own as a social entrepreneur four years ago and launched Thr3eFold.She has spent a decade helping hundreds of fashion & lifestyle brands grow their business through marketing, sales, and PR. She discusses the power of using iFundwomen to crowdfund her business ideas rather a traditional platform like Kickstarter. Storyblaster, a previous guest on the podcast, was also instrumental in helping her tell her story to a new audience.www.Thr3efold.comwww.ifundwomen.comwww.storyblaster.com
Guest, Leesa McGregor, is the author of the book, A New Alphabet for Humanity, which is on Kickstarter. It is a beautifully illustrated children's book featuring 26 empowering alphabet words designed to nurture emotional intelligence, activate the potential of our children and create a brighter future for humanity. A New Alphabet for Humanity teaches children the power of positive words so they can build empathy and compassion, unlock their imagination, and feel empowered to live their dreams. Leesa shares her passion for shaping the world through social good and shares her insights into how she began to journey to publish this book. She also introduces us to GenM, a website to hire interns for a three-month project. Many Kickstarter project owners could take advantage of this service.You can find a link to GenM.com here Her Kickstarter campaign is here: A New Alphabet for Humanity
Crowdfunding for Social Good is what sets Devin Thorpe apart from many who use Crowdfunding as a means of raising money. Devin is a deeply optimistic person. He is an author, educator, and speaker;  a champion of social good. Through his work, he aspires to help solve some of the world's biggest problems--poverty, disease, and climate change. His Forbes articles often reach more than 100,000 readers and his books—read over 1 million times—on using money for good, personal finance, crowdfunding and corporate social responsibility draw on his experience as an investment banker, CFO, treasurer and mortgage broker. He has delivered a keynote speech at the United Nations and spoken in countries from Brazil to Russia and across the US. Most recently he sat down with Bill Gates and asked him a question, What's Your Superpower?.You can follow Devin on Twitter @devindthorpe or email at forbes@devinthorpe.com.
You build a crowd by giving before asking. That is the takeaway from our guest, Lucia Fasano. Lucia is a songwriter, actress, and producer of comedy and music. She is in her 2nd Kickstarter campaign and shares how she follows the philosophy of giving to your fans and then asking them for support.So many do it the opposite, asking for money before building the following. Amanda Palmer is discussed and her fantastic Ted Talk and book called The Art of Asking.You can find Lucia Kickstarter campaign, Best Friend Forever: Lucia Fasano's Second Album here Her music is also shared in the opening for this episode of Funding the Dream
Richard Bliss and Bryan Rosander co-host with guest, Laser Malena Webber, member of the band, The DoubleClicks. Laser has raised hundreds of thousands of dollars on Kickstarter and Patreon but focusing on giving away their music and then giving fans a chance to say thank you.Laser's book is currently on Kickstarter. It is called "Crowdfunding for Musicians" and shares insights and stories on how to be successful in building a following and raising money for your artistic efforts as a musician.But Laser's advice isn't limited to Musicians. Laser quit their day job and began a life pursuing a dream sustained by their fans. Laser shares one critical piece of advice on the show. Give away your work for years before you begin asking for money.That is NOT going to be popular advice for many starting out and looking for a shortcut. There are no shortcuts. Instead, listen to what Laser has to say and follow their advice.
Maxine Lapiduss is a Golden Globe winning, 4-time Emmy-nominated TV writer and producer. She is also the co-founder of Storyblaster, a software company that helps Crowdfunding project creators learn how to tell their story and build their crowd. As host Richard Bliss oftentimes says, you don't have a funding problem, you have a crowd problem. Solve the crowd problem first and the money will follow. An entrepreneur and thought leader, Maxine combines her expertise and experience in fundraising sales, branding, storytelling, and social media campaign strategy into Storyblaster. On this episode of Funding the Dream, she shares how Storyblaster is able to use experience from more than 300,000 campaigns to craft templates to allow project creators to build their own storyboards and social media campaigns.If you are a crowdfunding project creator, it is worth your time to listen to Maxine's conversation with host, Richard Bliss. If you are interested in learning more about her company and product, you can visit Storyblaster here
Bobby Fiorentino began building his crowd nearly a year before he even knew what his Kickstarter project was going to be.He built a following, using Live Stream, Giveaways, and advertising to draw people to his Facebook group where they shared common interests. His group rapidly grew to more than 4,000 members. He then began using this new crowd to develop ideas and as a sounding board for a Kickstarter project. Then, with the project beginning to be fleshed out, he identified what the least amount of money would be needed to be successful and how to use GameCrafter to build out his game.He settled on $500.That may not seem like a lot of money to start with on Kickstarter, but Bobby's project, called This Game Is A Disaster, leveraged all the right assets, followed all the right steps, and while the goal was modest, his process was exceptional.This interview with Bobby Fiorentino is well worth your time to listen. If you are a new project creator or even someone who has been Kickstarting for a while, you will find some extremely useful advice from this first timer. 
Wes Woodbury, from Fundamental Games, is a returning guest. He relaunched his Kickstarter campaign, Legends of Novus, after appearing as a guest on the show in Episode 293.With advice from other guests and fans, Wes went back to the drawing board and retooled and relaunched his campaign.There were three key things he did to increase his chances for success:#1 He worked with Manufacturers to lower is overall production costs by a significant amount. This allowed him to lower his overall goal.#2 Finding alternative methods of adding content without adding costs. #3 Helping others succeed. Wes has been heavily involved in helping other Kickstarter creators put their board games on Tabletop simulator in order to enhance the overall experience.Wes goes into details on each of these as well as other strategies. This is well worth listening to as he is on his way to having a successful Kickstarter project.
From Singapore to San Jose, this interview spans the globe. Nison Chan is the guest and discusses his retail store, We The People Store, that only sells Kickstarter projects. With stores in Singapore, Malaysia, and St Louis Missouri, Nison shares the idea behind getting your Kickstarter product into retail.In addition, Nison is part of a Kickstarter conference called For Creators By Creators that was recently on the East Coast, visiting NYC.As the buyer for the We The People Store, Nison shares the things that are attractive to his customers.You can find We the People Store here: Take a look and see if one of your favorite projects is found in their store.
Grandpa Beck's Games is one of the most successful game companies you have never heard of. They did over $1 million in revenue last year with their games regularly appearing as a best seller on Amazon.And their Kickstarter project, Cover Your Kingdom does something completely opposite from where most game publishers go...They took a successful family game and reworked it for the hobby board game industry and released it on Kickstarter.This is a fascinating conversation. Jeff Beck, my guest, is the second generation of Grandpa Beck's Games. His father, a current airline pilot, started the game company a decade ago as another means of income...Wait! What?It is this story that makes this episode different in many ways. This is not your average board game publisher.And wait until you hear what his one piece of advice is to publishers just starting out...It has to do with the Distribution model and you may be surprised by his answer.Listen in and let us know what you think.Visit our group on Facebook to discuss this topic and many more:Funding the Dream on Kickstarter Facebook Group
Brandon Raasch has mastered a means of increasing backer adoption during the lull between launch and the end.You know that period where backers slow to a trickle and you wonder if the campaign is ever going to pick back up.Brandon Raasch with Bard Games saw that lull in the middle as an opportunity to increase his backer's commitment. His project is called Fickle, you can find it here on KickstarterAnd sure enough, if you take a look at his project on Kicktraq here you can see two smaller rises in the middle of the campaign. His secret is out and he shares what he did to get the attention to his project.Brandon's company is called Bard Games and you can find their website here
JT Smith from the GameCrafter is the guest as he shares how their new crowdfunding platform, Crowd Sales, allows you to lower the price for your backers as you overfund.As JT puts it, rather than adding stretch goals to overfund, Crowd Sales introduces a discount for reaching a certain number of backers. For example, if the pledge level is $50 at the beginning and then 10 backers support the project, the cost for all backers drops by a few dollars. More backers, more cost drops. This keeps going all the way up to more than 40% discount.Meaning a $50 game would drop all the way to $30. Crowd Sales is the one that covers the cost reduction which allows the project creator to keep the same amount of money no matter how far the price drops.Sounds interesting to me. I'll be wanting to hear your take on this novel approach to crowdfunding your next game.
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