Marketing a VN for Crowdfunding

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Zeekee
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Marketing a VN for Crowdfunding

#1 Post by Zeekee » Sat Aug 13, 2016 4:40 pm

So, my colleagues and I began work on a Visual Novel about a year ago and figured back in May that it was time to launch a Kickstarter campaign. Though the development was well underway and somewhere around 1-2k in funds had already been sunk into assets, the campaign failed with us only reaching around 25% of our goal. We attributed this failure to a few factors: 1. We didn't have a playable demo out, and 2. NONE of us have any clue what we're doing when it comes to marketing (We believe this to be the number 1 factor contributing to our failure).

I guess what I'm trying to ask is whether or not there's a section of LSF for marketing-people-for-hire. I know that a few other indie devs hire people to do this for them, but I'm not too sure where to look.

Anyway, thanks in advance! Any help would be much appreciated!
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Re: Marketing a VN for Crowdfunding

#2 Post by gamerbum » Sat Aug 13, 2016 4:48 pm

There are a few in this section: viewforum.php?f=66

Good luck.

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Re: Marketing a VN for Crowdfunding

#3 Post by trooper6 » Sat Aug 13, 2016 4:51 pm

In the section that gamerbum linked to, you might want to look for barzini, I hear great things about them.
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Re: Marketing a VN for Crowdfunding

#4 Post by RotGtIE » Sat Aug 13, 2016 5:24 pm

I would disagree with your assessment. Kickstarter has a high failure rate and people are skeptical of it because of that. Not having a playable demo works very much against you. How are you going to get any marketing done if you don't have a product to showcase?

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Re: Marketing a VN for Crowdfunding

#5 Post by Zelan » Sat Aug 13, 2016 5:52 pm

I think you're definitely correct in your guess that the lack of a demo contributed to the failure. For many people, more than just ideas, images, and assurances is needed for them to believe that you're making a great product. It would be like if I tried to sell you a preorder of a book by summarizing the plot and showing off some illustrations, but giving no evidence of a publisher lined up.

Are you active on social media at all? I don't know the ins and outs of using social media to promote a product, but I do know that it's very effective when done right.

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Re: Marketing a VN for Crowdfunding

#6 Post by Ryuushiro » Sat Aug 13, 2016 6:00 pm

I don't know, you say you think the project failed mostly due to lack of marketing, but now matter how good the marketing could have been, I would never support a kickstarter project without a demo.

Just the promise of a nice finished product isn't really enough for me if there is nothing to show me what has been accomplished so far, you know?

That's just me, though. But it might be good to take that into account, since games without a lot of marketing have managed to launch a successful campaign before.
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Re: Marketing a VN for Crowdfunding

#7 Post by trooper6 » Sat Aug 13, 2016 7:03 pm

To follow everyone else. If I don't know you, and you don't have a track record of successfully completing projects, I'm not giving you any money without a demo.
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Re: Marketing a VN for Crowdfunding

#8 Post by SundownKid » Sat Aug 13, 2016 8:25 pm

Not having a demo may have had more of an impact then you thought. While I would back a project with no demo, with a VN where it's ridiculously easy to make a demo, I think most people wont back a project without one.

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Re: Marketing a VN for Crowdfunding

#9 Post by sorani » Sun Aug 14, 2016 1:46 am

I think it's because Deiji and KittyKatStar was also running a kickstarter as you were, Mokkacino Caramel. When you host your kickstarter, make sure not to do it when another evn kickstarter is taking place, especially a popular one. One kickstarter tends to overshadow and take away all your investors.
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Re: Marketing a VN for Crowdfunding

#10 Post by papiersam » Sun Aug 14, 2016 12:21 pm

I think, all things considered, everyone above covered everything, but I thought I'd add:
1. We didn't have a playable demo out, and 2. NONE of us have any clue what we're doing when it comes to marketing
Note that 1 and 2 aren't precisely mutually exclusive; good marketing means knowing how and when to reach out to as much as who your target audience is with what tools are most effective and cost-efficient. If that means a playable demo to assure and demonstrate your VN, then that is the marketing choice made (though I doubt there are very many situations where a demo isn't useful if not required).

Also; I'm sure there are great articles and free crash courses on marketing online that the team could look at instead of having to hire someone.

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Re: Marketing a VN for Crowdfunding

#11 Post by Caveat Lector » Sun Aug 14, 2016 1:30 pm

sorani wrote:I think it's because Deiji and KittyKatStar was also running a kickstarter as you were, Mokkacino Caramel. When you host your kickstarter, make sure not to do it when another evn kickstarter is taking place, especially a popular one. One kickstarter tends to overshadow and take away all your investors.
No offense, but that's incredibly rude and unfair to Deiji and KittyKatStar. Kickstarters are not a contest, and no one "overshadows" other peoples' KS's. Plenty of people run quite a few KS's at the same time. If you choose to wait because other people have their KS's up, then you'll for sure NEVER get funded. Talk to barzini and learn how to market better.
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Re: Marketing a VN for Crowdfunding

#12 Post by Zelan » Mon Aug 22, 2016 10:58 pm

Caveat Lector wrote:
sorani wrote:I think it's because Deiji and KittyKatStar was also running a kickstarter as you were, Mokkacino Caramel. When you host your kickstarter, make sure not to do it when another evn kickstarter is taking place, especially a popular one. One kickstarter tends to overshadow and take away all your investors.
No offense, but that's incredibly rude and unfair to Deiji and KittyKatStar. Kickstarters are not a contest, and no one "overshadows" other peoples' KS's. Plenty of people run quite a few KS's at the same time. If you choose to wait because other people have their KS's up, then you'll for sure NEVER get funded. Talk to barzini and learn how to market better.
I think that's actually more of a compliment to Deiji and KittyKatStar than anything else - sorani was essentially saying that their product was so great that it stole the show for any other VN out there.

I do agree with your point that "overshadowing" isn't really something that happens with multiple EVN projects up at once. I could see it happening if Zeekee's project was also a slice of life/friendship GxB/G story about a young woman who gets a job in a coffee shop, but just because the projects are in the same medium doesn't necessarily mean that they're competing with each other. However, Zeekee's project is a sci-fi visual novel with a male protagonist and hacking minigames.

While it's not impossible for someone to be interested in both (me, for example), it's likely that these two VNs would appeal to fairly different audiences and/or demographics, so there would be plenty of money to go around (as I'm assuming sorani was going based off of the assumption that most backers wouldn't have disposable incomes and would have to make a choice about which VN to back).

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