What it feels like to launch a Kickstarter campaign
If you’re reading this you probably know that Angee launched on Kickstarter two days ago. It’s been a real roller coaster, raising $80,000 in just 48 hours with no PR — it's unprecedented. We didn’t know what to expect, and we’ve been thrilled with the support so far, so we wanted to share some of our first impressions about what it feels like to launch a Kickstarter campaign... and watch it take off.
It was a hectic start, trying to get all the content ready for launch, from the campaign to the website, Twitter, Facebook and all the other channels. Let alone trying to make connections with tech bloggers and reporters.
First day. The countdown begins.
It was late at night when we pushed the button. 18 months of work all leading up to one single moment. The countless hours planning, hoping, designing, redesigning, hoping some more, redesigning again, and then… our campaign was online! The whole team was there, a half-dozen guys leaned over a computer screen in our loft office. Three minutes of silence. Then, our first backer! He must have watched the video the moment we launched it. Then another backer, and another…
Three hours after launching, we’d hit $20,000. Yes! We knew we needed to get some press coverage, but how? We’re a tech-first team of software and hardware innovators, not professional self-promoters. We hoped attracting attention would be easy enough — in truth we wanted Angee to speak for itself. But we had no idea how to pitch to the press.
The sun sets…
Adrenaline kept me up all night, getting content for social media, trying to spread the word to journalists and later finding out they never opened those emails.
Eventually we decided to focus on things we could influence. We had received a lot of comments and questions, so we decided to send an even clearer message by updating the campaign and the FAQs, and also uploading an additional demo of the voice commands function. We were also getting the materials ready for our influencers — security blogs — because we wanted them to confirm what we were already confident about: that we have created the best smart security system on the market.
Overall, I was really surprised at the number of fans and positive appraisal we received the first day. People we had long admired reached out — which felt great — but we knew we still had a long way to go. With more backers coming to the campaign that night we reached 40k before the first 24 hours. Amazing.
The second day
In the morning, our phones were ringing off the hook, and our inboxes were exploding. Support was pouring into the Kickstarter page, along with more than a few questions, keeping us on our toes even as we felt so excited. We’d prepared very little — with only 1,000 subscribers to our newsletter before launching, we’d been too focused on the product design and explaining it well, rather than worrying about PR. We’re a tech-first company, after all, but suddenly we felt how much we needed a little press promotion.
The security blogs got back to us and were exhilarated about Angee — we were thrilled to get that feedback even though we were already confident in our product. We had their attention — they understood that our approach to security is ahead of the competition.
Then we realized, with all the backers coming into the campaign and all the positive sentiment on our social media pages – the word of mouth and the positive feelings of people who really believed in our project would be enough to push us past our goal.
I stayed up 44 hours. The team is ecstatic and working together perfectly. In the first 48 hours we got more than 250 backers, and raised almost a third of our goal. It was super exciting to see the amount of support we received. We would like to think we deserved it — working with persistence and passion throughout the past 18 months to build what we have today.
We are so humbled and grateful for all the support we’ve received from you, tech bloggers and big names in the industry who see how Angee really is more advanced than our competitors. Thank you to everyone who has supported us so far, and please continue to spread the word as we work our way toward our goal of changing the way we all protect — and connect to — our homes. THANK YOU!