On October 3, 2017, we launched our Kickstarter campaign for our new game, Crazy Commute. We were optimistic at the beginning but it wasn't long until we noticed that something was very wrong...These are the mistakes we made and the lessons we've learned.
Pre-launch Failures and the Data
The first day of launch should be the strongest, right? That's what everyone else seems to think. Our first day was so weak that it needed help benching baby-weights! All of our pre-launch marketing had failed...
When reviews came in days after launch, we though that maybe, just maybe, we'd be able to get back on track. We had bought some banners and Facebook ads and those reviews would help increase the confidence of potential backers, right? Unfortunately, it was too late; we had already lost momentum. Our campaign was buried under the weight of every other campaign that launched this month, our marketing efforts had already wholly failed - so badly, in fact, that those that were actually looking for our campaign either missed our launch date or couldn't find the project on Kickstarter.
After about a week and a half of carefully monitoring Google Analytics, getting adverts, banners, podcast interviews and reviews, the numbers were disheartening.
This is what the graph looked like from the day we started the campaign to the day we canceled it. In all, there were only 669 hits on our Kickstarter page in the 10 days that it was up, only 492 of those were unique, meaning only 492 people had even seen our campaign the whole time it was up!
Lesson learned: We obviously screwed up on the marketing side pre-launch. It's time to hit the books, research more about Kickstarter marketing, and grow our mailing list. It would also help to have reviews done before launch day.
At the same time that we launched our campaign, many other campaigns were also throwing their hats in the ring. Our little campaign failed to get that all-important launch day momentum and Kickstarter's algorithm is a cruel and unforgiving teacher. We were thrown so far to the back of the queue that it couldn't even hope to see the front of the line. It was doomed from the very start.
Lesson learned: That term "pre-launch" is coming up again. We failed in our pre-launch and so our first day was slow and our momentum was that of a steadying top. We really should have focused more on the before-launch marketing. Maybe we should have postponed the campaign to begin with.
Other Weak Links
I feel that our pitch might have been a little weak. Our thumbnail may not have been compelling enough to click on. Maybe, we could have been more creative in the video. There's a lot of it-could've-beens ricocheting off of the inside of my brain that it's hard to really, definitively say "yes, it was that!" We will have to comb through them all and try to fix each and every one of them for our relaunch.
Relaunch: Crazy Commute is Getting Back on the Road!
We really believe that Crazy Commute is a fun game and should be published! We will work hard over the next few months to consolidate our efforts, focus on marketing and make improvements on both our campaign and the game so that we can come back stronger than ever!
We are planning to relaunch in January of 2018 and hope that we will continue to have your support! Do take a look at Crazy Commute's landing page to try a print-and-play version of the game and don't forget to sign up for our mailing list!
Here's the link: http://www.crazycommute.com