How to create successful projects on Kickstarter: Interview with CEO of OMNIA startup - CfE Accelerator

How to create successful projects on Kickstarter: Interview with CEO of OMNIA startup

Seven successful campaigns, more than $ 200,000 in investment and a team of five – Omnia startup from Odesa wins Kickstarter users. Their products include a 100-in-1 universal transformer dress and a recycled plastic travel dress. How to create a successful startup, why Kickstarter is a mini-version of big business and what to focus on when creating your own product – we will talk  to Evelyn Evie, CEO of OMNIA startup.

Idea of the own OMNIA brand.

4 years ago my partner Artem Gavr and I worked on the AGE brand of men’s accessories made of wood and leather. Once we were sitting in the kitchen and realized that we wanted to create our own project, something of our own. Later on we came up with the idea of ​​transformer dress for women, which will be able to take dozens of different forms. I took the initiative and created a team of 5 people, which was also joined by several people from AGE.

We launched our first 100-in-1 transformer dress product on Kickstarter right away. Then we managed to raise about $ 30,000 instead of the expected $ 3,000. This success motivated our team to develop the OMNIA brand and create new projects. Why OMNIA? Because in translation, this word means infinity. And in our dresses we can embody a lot of designs.

First launch of the project

We launched our first project under the AGE brand on Kickstarter and it turned out to be successful. From that moment on, we started to accumulate our experience on this crowdfunding platform. We now have 7 successful projects in our portfolio and 7 successful campaigns for our clients. So now we are launching not only our own projects, but also helping other young startups. It is hard to invest less than $ 3,000 when starting a campaign.

Factors of a successful product

The first thing to realize is that Kickstarter is a mini-version of big business. That is, the product launch algorithm on the site should be considered as a long-term business project. That is why the approach to creating a campaign on the crowdfunding platform should be similar to the introduction of a product on the market.

That is, a company that wants to launch a project on Kickstarter must understand:

– what problem their product solves;

– what novelty it gives to people;

– why it should be bought;

– product quality. This should be worked over very carefully because it is the most competitive indicator of the product. Because of the quality, customers become loyal to the brand;

– the audience. Serious marketing research for the audience is worthwhile.

In the end, with the campaign strategy ready, it’s time to start working with Kickstarter algorithms. Therefore, when starting out with this platform, it is best to consult those who already have successful projects.

Audience selection

The audience we are targeting is Kickstarter visitors, the so-called serial bakers. These are the people who keep an eye on what is happening on the platform, on the news and top projects. They have the purchasing power and a set of specific product requirements, such as practicality, innovation and quality. There are fewer women than men, but they are, too, because our dresses have raised much more than what was announced at the start. Age is mostly 20+. That is, before launching a project, you should do an audience analysis and “fit” your product marketing campaign to that audience. Under this scheme, we do all the projects, whether they are female, male or gender-neutral.

For example, for 5 years of work we have collected our own baker database from all projects and made our own selection.

European, American or Australian audiences are very demanding, so we try to make our campaigns spectacular and expensive.

In general, purchasing power and behavior depend primarily on the mentality and standard of living of the people. For example, in the US, the number of people who can spend $ 180 for dress is much higher than those who are ready to pay such money in the post-Soviet countries.

The difference between Ukrainian and American audiences

We hardly work with buyers from the CIS countries, because it is a completely different dimension. Here people think differently, in addition, different motivation when buying products. For example, our friends who are designers sell a lot of white dresses in Ukraine because Ukrainian women want to look exquisite in such way. And in the US, the situation is completely opposite – the main thing there is practicality, so they buy dark-colored dresses.

Since childhood Americans have been mentally prepared that nobody owes them anything but if they have paid for the product, then the requirements are automatically imposed on it. If you sold the dress to Ukrainian woman, then when finding a defect, she will think that it is just a bad company and instead of exchanging or returning it she will write a negative review. American woman’s behavior is  completely different, she will contact you  without any “moving-on”  and ask you to solve the problem. That is, they don’t even think that you can refuse. At all. Even if they buy something from an offline store in the US, the manufacturer should always be responsible for the quality of the product. Therefore, because of this, they are both more difficult and easier to work with. Kickstarter has a very sophisticated feedback, where they write not only when things are bad, but generally in any case they need it.

Advertising of the project

For the first time recently we purchased adverts from bloggers from different countries for OMNIA EVO. This is a design of a dress that is sewn from recycled plastic caught in the ocean. Since this product focuses on ecology and fashion, we have chosen women-bloggers who are close to these concepts. They traveled around the world in our dresses and told their audience about the features of our product, its practicality and the importance of dealing with plastic waste.

The result of our collaboration with bloggers is an effective product PR on Internet. This added to the importance of our eco-project and the overall awareness of the OMNIA brand. However, it is not effective for increasing sales or the influx of organic audiences on the Kickstarter platform.

Marketing campaign

Very important things are the design of the project, bright, high-quality photos and presentation of the product. In particular, it is the video that most influences bakers and is critical to campaign performance. It captures the emotions of the person who is your potential client, so it should look stylish, qualitative and expensive.

In 2019, Kickstarter users aren’t ready to forgive a poor product presentation, even if it’s a super-innovative project. Therefore, it is best to consult professionals as to the content and not try to save money. Because when a young team invests their soul in a project, however, it does not make a very good presentation, it automatically loses all privileges.

Worries while launching the products

What we worry most about is whether our product will reach the audience. Because our ideas are mostly innovative, we do research, surveys and focus on a particular outcome. However, when it comes to giving away money for a new product, at times it is difficult for buyers. At the start of each campaign, we carefully prepare and calculate all possible scenarios for the project development. We don’t have the effect of unexpectedness.

Tips for startup creators

First of all, you need to understand whether you need it at all – run a business, be an entrepreneur, launch startups. Because now, there is a tendency that many people think that they can get settled in life  only by launching a startup.

Don’t think that OK, I’m going to start a business and then become an artist. Because you always have to love your work, believe in the idea and not focus on money. Not everyone succeeds in starting a business because there is a particular type of people who better realize themselves as professionals in a particular field. If you’re just for making money, a startup is not the option.