A website that tracks Kickstarter campaigns has revealed its findings of the four key elements creative start-ups need to get right to maximise their fundraising chances.
Kickspy has collated data from 98% of the campaigns run on Kickstarter with specially designed crawler software. Older, unsuccessful campaigns are only findable by direct URL.
Australian-based founder Walter Haas told advice publication StartupSmart the average success rate for a campaign was 50%.
He says the campaigns that matched the following four key metrics had a 70% success rate:
1. Shorter Campaigns Work Better Than Longer Ones
While start-ups may be tempted to create long projects to increase the opportunity to build momentum and drive donations, Haas says short projects consistently perform better because the deadline encourages people to pledge.
“The big simple thing is to make sure the project length is right. Success tends to drop the longer the project goes on. From the stats, we know 20-30 days is ideal, with a 60% average success rate. As the project drags on, your chances of success drop off. At 90 days, the success rate drops down to 30%,” Haas says.
2. Good Videos Are Essential
Haas confirmed that a short, clear and engaging video was a make-or-break factor.
“Looking at the numbers, you need to have a really good video,” Haas says. “The average success rate is about 50%, but without a good video drops to 35%.”
He says videos shorter than three minutes are more likely to be watched through, and having a coherent, concise message is a powerful driver of pledges.
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3. Longer Is Better When It Comes to Project Copy
While short campaigns and short videos are important, Haas says campaigns with longer copy and longer FAQ sections have a significantly higher chance of success.
“If you’ve got under 2000 words in the main description section, your chances of success very quickly drop from 50% to 25%. After 2000 it stays steady at 50% success,” Haas says. “This is similar for the FAQ section. Fewer than 500 words is not a good idea, but anything over that and you’re at average success rate. It doesn’t change the more you add.”
4. Seven Is the Magic Number of Reward Tiers
Campaigns that offer seven or more reward tiers maintain the 50% chance of success, whereas those with fewer drop down to 20%.
“You need to have at least seven different reward tiers. It doesn’t matter how many you add after that. All the way up to 30 tiers, the stats still show your chance at success stays around 50% to 60%.”