Kickstarter as a platform never stops changing. Back in the day all you needed was a good idea and a well crafted campaign page. Nowadays the platform is flooded by thousands of projects and, more often than not, needs help when generating traffic. Today’s crowdfunding consists of neverending planning of advertising budgets, gathering potential clients many months before the campaign and doing everything you can to appear in as many related media as possible.To stand out from all the competition it’s good to find a solid partner who has lots of knowledge about crowdfunding platforms. Geeknson company that we devoted this article to, could be a great example. Cooperating with us helped them collect $2,339,057 over their 3 latest campaigns.
At QUESTOWER by KA we’ve been supporting creators launching on Kickstarter or willing to get funding on the platform. Thanks to knowing it inside out we’re able to satisfy the needs of clients with the most unique ideas. We give them advice about how to show their project on Kickstarter so it attracts the most backers, how to promote it, help them to show it to media around the world and deliver to backers.
In today’s article we will describe a case study of working with the Geeknson company – a producer of board game tables aimed at hardcore gamers, families and regular players. How did we help the company to transform into one of the market leaders?
Geeknson Goes to Kickstarter
Geeknson has appeared on Kickstarter in 2016 for the first time. Their skills and ideas were outstanding, but the first campaign still needed to be cancelled. It looked simple and not unique enough compared to the competition. The marketing activities planned weren’t motivating enough to get people to back the campaign. The table might have been innovative but it wasn’t showcased in a way that would show off its uniqueness. Also: only one model was being shown and, like in our further examples, it’s not always a good idea.
The next campaign run by our client got funded but the final result of $66,284 was far from good. Especially considering that the product is quite high priced (the least expensive table was priced at $504 with no additional accessories). The campaign looked slightly better but lacked some marketing touch that would turn it into a real bestseller.
The Beginning of the Collaboration and the First Campaign
We met with Geeknson for the first time in 2016 – right when they decided to create a new line of board game tables called Megan. Together we talked through many ideas and set goals regarding our collaboration. The tables were supposed to ship only to European backers.
We began working on the project by creating the marketing plan and media buying plan – ordering sponsored articles and ads on websites. Contacting hobbyist groups on social media was also vital here, just like planning all online ads. The client assigned us a set budget to spend on these, which was easily one of the top reasons for the campaign’s huge success.
The next step was devoted to preparing materials for the media: from a press release to a press-kit including multimedia files ready to use in articles. We have also contacted journalists, bloggers and vloggers interested in the topic. On Facebook we started communication by publishing posts and information on the biggest groups devoted to board games.
When working on the content of the Kickstarter campaign (in 3 language versions) we’ve prepared animated ads for various digital media as well as a series of articles to publish on our blog.
Shipping the tables to their backers safely was among the main goals of this project. In the case of a massive, oaken product worth quite a bit it might have been quite challenging. To avoid problems we have decided to make the client take care of the transport as much as possible. Thanks to that, instead of risking, it was ensured that tables would arrive to their backers in a perfect state. Additionally they were going to come pre-assembled, only needing their legs to be attached.
Megan table’s campaign was launched in May 2020 and collected $737,316 which made us sure that the strategy we came up with was the way to go. Together with the client we quickly moved to work on the next project.
Megan Returns – the Second Launch
The second campaign we worked on together was once again devoted to Megan tables. The models remained identical but new accessories were offered to the backers. This time we’ve decided to target backers in the US, Canada and Australia – countries with highly developed tabletop gaming markets, which couldn’t participate in the previous campaign.
Even though the Megan tables were still the main product here, we’ve also decided to add some new items. The Cat Holder turned out to be the most effective when promoting the table. An attachable shelf for a cat to lie on with a rope-like toy hanging from it worked great to attract board game fans who often boast about their felines.
Graphical changes were another new idea in the campaign’s design. Our agency created a character called Mr. Geeknson – a crafter, gentleman and cat lover who makes board game tables. Illustrations portrayed him with cats and nature surrounding him. His design is supposed to personalize the solidness of the brand and match the style of modern board game illustrations. The campaign was also full of hand drawn, decorative elements like backgrounds and headings. We replaced the usual text-only sections with these to make them feel more game-like.
The campaign also featured an animation demonstrating how the tables are assembled to show how simple and fast it is and how they will be shipped despite the distance from Europe to other continents. Together with the client we have also filmed videos showing off various functionalities of the table.
The final step was to reach more top board game related influencers. Quinn from the popular Shut Up and Sit Down was one of them.
The campaign launched on August 19th 2020 – 3 months after the previous one. Despite such a short break it collected $596,631 thanks to backers from non-european countries.
BRISTOL Table – New Model, New Challenges
Another project, likely the biggest that we worked on together, was the campaign of BRISTOL Board Game Tables. The main idea was equipping the inner vaults of tables with LED lighting and creating a system of modular, easily attachable accessories. The company designed a line of tables with magnets hidden in certain areas. Thanks to these it’s possible to attach special gadgets from token holders to various trays and dice towers. As many board game lovers enjoy modularity, it became a vital part of our marketing communication. Apart from over a dozen accessories available on the campaign, backers were informed that new ones will keep getting designed and will be available on the company’s web store. We also told them that they can always get the most basic version of the table, and add accessories later on when they feel that they need them.
During the campaign of BRISTOL tables we put huge focus on direct contact with the backers. The campaign’s page featured a direct phone number to the designer of the table. You could either call or email him.
Additionally Geeknson created a showroom in their headquarters where potential backers from various countries (UK, Germany etc.) could see the tables with their own eyes.
When it comes to marketing, new activities included starting a Facebook group for the product and sharing new info about the upcoming table every few days. Additionally we have also activated our push push notifications that encouraged people to sign up for the campaign. A system of mailing was also created. Everyone who joined it was getting news about the project and various promotional actions.
Another great way to generate more traffic was the giveaway held on one of the popular web apps. Everyone who joined and shared the news about the campaign with friends could win a whole board game table for themselves.
The campaign itself continued the ideas started by its predecessors. Thanks to expanding the modularity of the product, and increasing the amount of social media activities, the project broke the company’s previous record and collected 1 million US dollars. A system of stretch goals also helped a lot. Backers could unlock rewards together and these included many additions to the tables.
All 3 campaigns that we worked on together with Geeknson have collected $2,339,057 in total and helped to turn the client into one of the leaders of the industry.
Three campaigns that we worked on with Geeknson are one of many projects where we helped with consulting and marketing. If you’re working on a crowdfunding project and looking for guidance, contact us at email@example.com today.