Got a good idea? Can you pitch it? Need some startup capital? Nieman Lab wants to talk you through how to use Kickstarter to get your entrepreneurial project off the ground:
Lesson No. 1: Before you start a Kickstarter campaign, you better have a long list of people to tell about it. Otherwise, unless you’re lucky enough to have Kickstarter put your project on its homepage, few will even know it exists.
Actually raising money is only part of the challenge with Kickstarter, which has to approve a project in the first place.
Kickstarter cofounder Yancey Strickler told me that journalists often struggle with figuring out what kinds of rewards to offer. “The No. 1 thing that a journalist has to offer is access,” he said. “You can offer access while not breaking any boundaries or crossing any lines that are drawn for journalists. You can offer access in the sense that you’re sharing maybe a diary about the experience of researching the story. If you’re speaking to an audience that cares about the story, that will be interesting.”
The Nieman Lab piece even has some encouraging Kickstarter stats. For example, 662 journalism projects that have earned $2.23 million in pledges on Kickstart. More than 200 projects which have been successfully funded.