So your campaign failed. Whether you finished the thirty days or shut it down early, it still hurts to see all that effort come out for naught.
But there's no need for seppuku, as much as as that may sound. Your project is far from over.
Many campaigns don't fund on the on the first try only to smash their goal the second time. The Tau Ceti board game went from failure to $105k on their relaunch. Coolest Cooler failed their first campaign only to end up earning $13 million for their second campaign. (Unfortunately, they completely screwed up campaign delivery and were taken to court, but this article is all about the fundraising stage.)
So yeah, we can raise more money the second time on a campaign, but failure hurts. You're out time, ego, resources and cash. How do we minimize our risk of failure on this next run at the campaign?
Let's get into it.
1. Absorb that sweet, sweet information into your brain.
Unlike a project launching for the first time, one major advantage you have with a re-launch is all the yum-tastic data you've now got. This lets you know where to focus your efforts on the relaunch based on who *actually* contributed, not just who said they would.
-What were your biggest traffic sources?
-What were the most profitable traffic sources?
-Which tiers were most popular and which ones weren't?
-What was the average pledge amount?
-How did press talk about your campaign, if at all?
If you had Google Analytics enabled, you can also answer
-Who were your backers?
-What countries and languages are the most common?
-What was average time on page? (Is your video too long?)
Your project page and social media comments are also great sources of insight thanks to all the little knowledge nuggets backers have graciously left for you.
-What were people talking about?
-Were they unsure if your product worked or not?
-Were they unhappy with the price?
-Did backers feel listened to?
-Was something confusing?
-Did the backers say nothing at all?
Everything you see, or don't see, tells you a story.
Make note and adjust your strategy.
2. Extract sweet, sweet information from your backers' brains.
One of the biggest failures of a campaign is being infected with the dreaded Me-Disease. Me-Disease is a crowdfunding campaign disease where the creator uses the words "Me", "I'', "Myself" more than "You", and "Yourself".
It's fatal 90% of the time.
How do you know you're campaign has become infected?
Listen to your video and read your page. Tally up each"Me", "I'', "Myself" and each "Your" and "Yourself". If you're not talking about your backers at least 3 times as much as you talk about yourself, you might already be infected.
Thankfully, literally every person surrounding you has, within them, a small dose of the cure for Me-Disease. All you need to do to draw the cure out, is ask. How convenient!
Even though your project hasn't hit funding, that doesn't mean your backers will tar and feather you. Anyone who willingly put money down on your project for the first round is someone you need to talk to in order to prepare for your relaunch. Plus, they're full of the cure for Me-Disease. So let's make like a brain mosquito and suck, suck, suck!
Using campaign updates, emails, or other messaging, get in touch with your backers letting them know that you're planning a relaunch and you'd love their thoughts on how to improve things. While not everyone will reply, the few who do will be completely invaluable because those are backers likely to to help
Here's a list of questions to ask your previous backers, pick and choose as you like:
What did we do right with the campaign?
What did we do wrong with the campaign?
What was your opinion of the funding goal and tiers?
Was shipping a concern?
What was the opinion of the video?
What would make you pledge again?
What should we change on the page?
What on the page was worrying or confusing?
Were there other projects you've backed or would consider backing?
Once you've got a big sample of the cure for Me-Disease, you can take your re-launch one step further into success-town by asking all your previous backers to review your relaunch campaign page (in draft mode). Not only will this help you refine your page further, but it'll also help ensure they're there to back on day one again.
3. Eat and digest all these brains.
Literally eat brains. It'll make you smarter probably. I dunno. Makes sense to me. I'm not a doctor.
Anyway, you've got mountains of data now to relaunch your campaign. Assemble everything you've learned to build your new campaign & messaging. Follow the normal pre-campaign process with your new tweaks, and you're well on your way to a much stronger launch.
(Need a quick refresher on what a campaign page needs? Check out the Campaign Page Audit.)