In 2016, there’s no one way to launch a new comic series… in fact, the options are more varied than ever.ComixLaunch_Green035 In this session, Tyler discusses Chris Lewis’ experiences publishing on Comixology, in the direct market through IDW, and on Kickstarter, as well as his experience with Andy Schmidt’s Comics Experience.

 


Today’s Session is Sponsored by

Solar Flare – James Haick

Today’s session is sponsored by the ongoing comic series Solar Flare by James Haick and Branko Jovanovic. Download the first issue for free at www.solarflarecomic.com/store using the coupon code comixlaunch (all one word.)


Session Table Setting

Welcome back to ComixLaunch!

Great guest — great conversation with hardworking creator, Comixology, Comics Experience, working with pubs vs. self-publishing, and where KS fits in the big picture of building a career in comics.
Before I bring on my guest, share a few things going on in my world… this year is just flying by…
Only have two more Training Sessions for the pilot version of CLC.
Most launching campaigns April, May, June… super exciting
Supporting, feedback, etc… in 3 weeks, they’ll be presenting their KS plans to the group for comment and FB, and excited to see them, and go live.

In the next three months, I have two KS campaigns I’ll be involved in running, so been starting to build those project pages and getting ready.
Obviously, pre-launch awareness building has been underway for some time now… never too early to build an audience.

Getting my printer quotes, and logistics planning. With each KS I do, I try to get better and better at pushing more and more of the fulfillment to others, so I can focus on what I do best… or at least where I add the most value:
Creating New Products
Making Existing Products Better
Marketing

I have script to finish… the 10th issue of 10 of THE RED TEN, a superhero murder mystery series I’ve been working on since 2010… one script left to finish, Cesar is just about done with art on 9th issue, and that’ll be a wrap.

So, that’s what’s going on with me… I’d love to hear what’s going on in YOUR world, your projects, your wins, your triumphs, your struggles, and certainly your Kickstarter tips and questions — ComixLaunch.com/voicemail and leave me a 90 second message fit to play on the show.

Guest Introduction

My guest today is a writer whose first mini-series, DRONES, was released in 2015 as a part of the first wave of the Comics Experience / IDW publishing alliance. His work has appeared in the Imaginary Drugs, and GrayHaven Comics The Gathering anthologies, and is the founder of the self-publishing imprint Epigamics. He just launched his third Kickstarter, Karma Police, which is a murder mystery that spans lifetimes, and is more than 50% funded with a little more than three weeks to go.

Welcome to ComixLaunch, Mr. Chris Lewis!
Anything else you want to tell the CL audience about you and your work before we dive in?

What is Today’s Episode About?

I’m looking forward to talking to you, a KS veteran, with a few campaigns under your belt, about a bunch of things… specifically. I want to talk Karma Police, I want to talk about your Comics Experience experience, and the decision to go digital first and KS the trade. But first…

Guiding Discussion Questions

1) What’s the why behind Karma Police? Why was this a story you had to tell?

2) I hold Comics Experience in very high regard… many of the creators I’ve worked with over the past few years have been involved in the classes Andy Schmidt offers, and have been involved with their new publishing initiatives. What has your experience been like with CE, both the workshops and the publishing initiative?

3) Okay, let’s talk the release strategy for Karma Police. Karma Police is a 4-issue mini-series. You published issues #1-2 as a digital first through Comics Experience, and now you’re going to KS to fund the trade collection. Was this always the plan?

4) What are your thoughts on Comixology as a distribution platform for creators? Pros and cons?

5) How do you make the Kickstarter experience a special experience, even for readers who have already read and loved Karma Police in digital?

Speed Round

1) Finish this sentence: “Kickstarter is _______.”

A lot of work.

2) Let’s the pretend the powers that be at Kickstarter are listening (which you know they are)… if you could change one thing about the Kickstarter platform, what would it be?

If a backer has backed multiple times or projects only send out one email of updates etc. and omit double emails.

3) What’s your secret weapon? (Meaning a tool, resource, app, etc. that you couldn’t make comics without?)

A pen and paper. Jotting down ideas as they come up.

4) Fulfillment is where even successful Kickstarter creators often drop the ball… Do you have a fulfillment tip for our listeners?

Just how many ways there are now to fulfill (Amazon, Kracken etc.)

5) Can you recommend one comic (not done by you) more people need to check out?

“Turncoat” by Ryan O Sullivan, “Dear Editor” by Ryan K Lindsay, “Past the Last Mountain” by Paul Ahler and Louie Joyce


Sponsor Mid-Roll

In a moment, I’m going to give you today’s ComixLauncher, but first, we need to thank our sponsor…

Solar Flare

Solar Flare is an ongoing comic series that takes place in a world very similar to our own. The only difference is that Earth was just hit by an x-class solar flare wiping out all electronics, similar to an EMP.
The main protagonist of the story, Jake Clifford, has to travel from Florida to Tennessee in this new electronic less world. He not only wants to reunite with his young daughter Mazzy, but to also help his scientist friend get to a facility that will act as ground zero in reestablishing the country’s electrical infrastructure.

Solar Flare is a post apocalyptic, sci-fi story that has been described as Y: The Last Man meets The Walking Dead without zombies.

James and his team of creators have successfully raised enough money 4 separate times now on Kickstarter and the 5th campaign launched on March 1st.

All 5 issues are available for sale on their website, www.solarflarecomic.com/store. Comix Launch listeners can download the 1st issue of Solar Flare for free using the coupon code: comixlaunch
Also, if you could, like their Facebook page at www.facebook.com/solarflarecomic.


ComixLauncher

It’s time for today’s ComixLauncher.
A ComixLauncher is a short, actionable activity you can and should do right now, or immediately after listening to the show. They’re all activities I’ve done myself, and will get you one step closer to a successful ComixLaunch. They’ll transform this Podcast from a passive, lean back activity centered around Tyler James, into an active, lean-forward activity centered around YOU.

ComixLauncher 35 –
Write down one thing you will do in the next 30 days to build your network of creator peers.

Send an email of introduction.
Take a course.
Attend a convention.

All of us our busy, but we all can spare 5 minutes to do this. [NA — What comes out on paper may surprise you. And if you’d like to share the results of your ComixLauncher with me, I’d love to see them. Email me at [email protected], subject line: ComixLauncher #35.]


Wrap Up

Wrap Up Questions
1) One thing we didn’t talk about was ?
2) Where will Kraken be next at cons, and what’s the best way to keep up with you online?

Thanks for Listening.

We’re going to go even deeper into both mindset, strategies and tactics for making KS work for you.


Have You Subscribed, Rated, or Reviewed ComixLaunch Yet?

If you’ve enjoyed this Session of ComixLaunch, I need you to do me a favor… actually, I need three favors. Please Subscribe, Rate and Review ComixLaunch on iTunes.

They’re the rocket fuel this show is running on, and the sooner you do it, the more powerful your action will be. Don’t wait to give us some love!

>>> CLICK HERE TO LEAVE A REVIEW ON iTUNES <<<

Provide a rating, 1-5 stars and leave an honest review.

This can be done in less than 2 minutes and could make HUGE difference to the show.

All your comic book printing questions are answered, as Tyler talks to the KrakenPrint Team about whenComixLaunch_Green034 to choose offset vs. POD printing, what are the real drivers of cost when it comes to printing, paper quality and much more. If you’re printing a book this year, you need to listen to this session.

Note: this episode contains a special listener bonus:

How to Choose the Right Paper Stock for Your Comic or Graphic Novel Project 

Click the link above to get the free guide courtesy of ComixTribe and KrakenPrint!


Today’s Session is Sponsored by

Luminous Ages, a fantasy comic and art book now on Patreon. Visit ComixLaunch.com/luminous to find out more.


Session Table Setting

Welcome back to ComixLaunch!
The podcast to learn about mindset, strategies, and tactics… today, we’re going to touch on all three.
If you’re listening to this show, good chance you’ll be taking a book to print in the not-to-distant future.

Guest Introduction

My guests today are the Customer Service General Manager of KrakenPrint, a Chicago-area print brokerage firm, specializing in comics, graphic novels, art books, childrens books, gaming and much more.
Jacob Way, who is the Customer service and General Managerer, who handles marketing, management, and business development for Kraken.
Sam Amborn, who is the graphics and operations manager, handling graphic design, prepress and printing operations, with more than 10 years in the printing industry.
If you’re in small press or artists alley at major cons such as C2E2 or NYCC, don’t be surprised if he comes by to introduces themselves.

Welcome to ComixLaunch Jacob and Sam!

Before we get into answering some of the most common printing questions that creators have, I’m wondering if you could tell the ComixLaunch audience a bit more about yourself and how you got into the printing business?

What is Today’s Episode About?

Guiding Discussion Questions

1) Kraken is a print broker… not a printer. Can you clarify the difference, and talk about the advantages of dealing with a print broker vs. the printer?

2) Now, I know (and you probably know) that printing can be very intimidating for creators, especially the first few times they do it. Often times, thanks to a successful Kickstarter creators will finally have the means to do a larger, off-set print run… but filling out a print quote can be confusing, and writing that big check can be very scary. Ideally, my goal for listeners of this episode is that by the end of the show, knows what they needs to know to confidently request a print quote from a printer like Kraken… and feels a little more comfortable with the process. Sound good?

3) Before we get to the print quote, let’s talk about when a creator is ready to work with a printer like Kraken. Is there a certain print run size or minimum budget that you’d need to see to work with a creator?

4) Okay, let’s start with the print quote… What’s the key information that YOU (kraken) need to know in order to quote a book?

We can work on any level of knowledge.

Have an idea of what you want to do?
Like Marvel? Fantagraphics?

There’s industry standards, but different publishers use different standards.

Knowing Paper Weights
Samples available 70 lbs standard
A lot of options
Good to know what you’re trying to make
Paper Finish & Coating
Everyone has their own terminology.
Paper can be uncoated.
Coated papers, mixture of plastics, give a smoother finish, more saturated look.
Finish – Matte (no sheen)
Gloss – Sheen.
Coating finish on covers – a varnish or lamination or UV

5) What are the biggest drivers of cost on a quote? Tips for budget conscious creators?

Color vs. black & white — B&W much cheaper. 1 color on each side. 50% or more in savings.
Off-set printing – metal sheets aluminum.
Perfect bound, hardcover, saddle stitch. Don’t be afraid of hardcover, but be conscious of weight.
A whole plate = signature 25 inches by 30 inches. 1 plate, front and back is a signature.
1 signature = 16 pages
Covers will be their own thing. To save money, inside cover blank on perfect bound.
When you do multiple variant covers, can save some money by doing gang-running… work with printers. Put multiple covers on one plate.
Price breaks come at 500s

6) What are the biggest mistakes you guys see creators make that slow down the process of getting books printed… and how to solve.

1) Resolution Issues
300 pixels per inch, or greater.
Can’t bump a resolution in PS.

2) Color issues
Color modes — Creating files usually in RGB (Red Green Blue) mode – anything with digital display is RGB
Off-set Printing – Uses CMYK (Cyan Magenta Yellow Black) mode – Additive color. Colors combined and overlaid.
Black and White – Convert Files to Greyscale. Will look B&W but actually a mixture… not a true grey.
I can easily change it on my end, but there is a color ship from RGB to CMYK.

3) Bleed Issues
What is Bleeds? An extension of printing beyond the finished product trim size. Any graphics meant to touch edge of page should be extended beyond the edge.
Needed to account to subtle difference in machinery.
Not having bleed margin can have white sliver of edge.
InDesign and Illustrator will let you include it.
Export your files to PDF, use the Press PDF settings. Will make sure everything is converted to CMYK and Bleed amounts.

7) Getting the books printed is only part of the challenge… fulfillment is required to actually get books in backers hands. I know you’ve done a lot of work when it comes to fulfillment solutions for creators. Can you tell me what Kraken offers?


SPECIAL COMIXLAUNCH BONUS

If you’ve ever felt stuck or unsure about how to choose the paper stock for your next project, then worry no more!

This handy guide, courtesy of a conversation with Jacob Way, General Manager of KRAKENPrint, will help you never have this problem again!

Download the guide by filling out the form below.

Get the Guide!


77307058-d4a3-4e20-b4e6-24e312cd7576
Need help choosing paper stock for your comic or graphic novel project?We’ll email you a free guide from ComixLaunch and KrakenPrint!






We respect your privacy.
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Sponsor Mid-Roll

In a moment, I’m going to give you today’s ComixLauncher, but first, we need to thank our sponsor…

Luminous Ages

photo-original

Luminous Ages is a fantasy comic set in a universe where dragons, humans, gods, titans, demons, angels and beasts have the ability to control dream magic!
Created by Australian writer/artist Anthony Christou, the adventure begins with a young farm boy, Thrakos, going through a painful transformation to become a Mage of the Mark. What path will he choose? What secret has his father been hiding from him? And why are dragons hunting him in the dreamworld?

It’s a full-color paperback comic available now on Kickstarter, and includes a bonus concept art book full of dragons and magic, that expands on existing and future characters and environments in the comic!

The first issue of Luminous Ages and the Concept Artbook is finished and can be ordered now.

Go to ComixLaunch.com/luminous to find out more.

Be sure to leave Anthony a comment so he knows that we sent you!


ComixLauncher

It’s time for today’s ComixLauncher.
A ComixLauncher is a short, actionable activity you can and should do right now, or immediately after listening to the show. They’re all activities I’ve done myself, and will get you one step closer to a successful ComixLaunch. They’ll transform this Podcast from a passive, lean back activity centered around Tyler James, into an active, lean-forward activity centered around YOU.

ComixLauncher
Today’s ComixLauncher — Submit a Print Quote to Kraken

You’re likely in one of three positions:
You’ve a print project coming up and you know your specs, you know exactly what you want, exactly what you need.
You’ve got a print project and have a good idea what you want, but want to talk over some options, and maybe aren’t quite sure how many books you need.
You have an idea for project, and but need help with the next steps when it comes to printing.
http://krakenprint.com/quote/

All of us our busy, but we all can spare 5 minutes to do this. [NA — What comes out on paper may surprise you. And if you’d like to share the results of your ComixLauncher with me, I’d love to see them. Email me at [email protected], subject line: ComixLauncher #34.]


Wrap Up

Wrap Up Questions
1) One thing we didn’t talk about was ?
2) Where will Kraken be next at cons, and what’s the best way to keep up with you online?
Thanks for Listening.

We’re going to go even deeper into both mindset, strategies and tactics for making KS work for you.


Have You Subscribed, Rated, or Reviewed ComixLaunch Yet?

If you’ve enjoyed this Session of ComixLaunch, I need you to do me a favor… actually, I need three favors. Please Subscribe, Rate and Review ComixLaunch on iTunes.

They’re the rocket fuel this show is running on, and the sooner you do it, the more powerful your action will be. Don’t wait to give us some love!

>>> CLICK HERE TO LEAVE A REVIEW ON iTUNES <<<

Provide a rating, 1-5 stars and leave an honest review.

This can be done in less than 2 minutes and could make HUGE difference to the show.

Issues of diversity in comics and finding the big why’s behind the comics and projects you create is ComixLaunch_Green033the focus of this session with special guest Kwanza Osajyefo. Plus: ComixLaunch listener voice mail!


Today’s Session is Sponsored by

Rocketbook Wave, a Cloud Connected Microwavable Notebook currently on Kickstarter. Get yours at ComixLaunch.com/rocketbook

RBwave


Session Table Setting

Welcome back to ComixLaunch!
We have a great show and a great guest today, and we’ll be talking about the bigger why’s behind our work, diversity in comics, and a whole lot more.

But before we get into that, I want to start by saying thank you.  I want to say thank you for joining me and for all the feedback, emails, reviews, re-tweets and so on.
I’ve said it before that creating, even in a collaborative medium like comics, involves a lot of time being alone, staring at a computer screen or our desks… in the winter especially, when conventions less frequent, days are shorter, nights are colder… it’s tough! But making connection, even virtually, is one way to keep at it and keep going… and you guys definitely keep me going.

SpeakPipe – Last episode, I shared news of a new ComixLaunch feature, that makes it super easy for you to become a part of this show. I’ve installed SpeakPipe on the ComixLaunch.com website, and now, with a couple of clicks, you can leave me voice mail…

Jim Whiting, creator of Margo – Intergalactic Trash Collector
“I recently received a mixed review from an online comic site, it wasn’t all bad. After my initial hurt and rejection, I listed his points and looked at them as teachers. I emailed the guy and asked to quote him and to exchange banner ads. Now he is gung-ho to promote my up coming book and will run my press release as is.”

Hey, I love the idea of banner exchanges. I also love how you turned what could be a negative (a critical comment) into a positive — constructive crits to learn from, an opportunity to engage a fellow person in the industry further expanding your network, and a banner exchange!
A ton of lesson’s there!

When you share your own vulnerabilities, transparencies, struggles… a funny thing happens. Other people are drawn to it, share their similar experiences, and how they handle them. Yet another part of the ROI of being transparent.

Check out http://margocomics.com/ for more of Jim’s work.

One more SpeakPipe message, this one from a creator named – Daniel Brodie
Thanks for the tips, Daniel, and congrats on your KS success and good luck finishing strong.

If you’d like to leave us a message and be a part of the show, go to ComixLaunch.com/voicemail and follow the super easy instructions there. I look forward to hearing from you.

Now, let’s get to the heart of today’s show and an awesome conversation.


Guest Introduction

My guest today is a former digital editor at Marvel and DC Comics – best known for launching DC’s Zuda imprint, which published series like the award-winning Bayou, High Moon, Night Owls, Superton, Celadore, Black Cherry Bombshells, Bottle of Awesome, and I Rule the Night. He is also the Creator and writer of BLACK, his first Kickstarter project with art by Tim Smith 3, Jamal Igle, and Khary Randolph, which is currently crushing it on Kickstarter, having raised more than $53K from the support of more than 1500 backers.

Welcome to ComixLaunch Mr. Kwanza Osajyefo
Anything else you want to tell the ComixLaunch audience about yourself?


What is Today’s Episode About?

Guiding Discussion Questions

Black has a strong, “get it instantly” high concept — “In a world that already fears and hates them – what if only Black people had superpowers?” that seems to have really resonated with backers. Were you surprised at great start to your campaign?

One of the exercises I have my students do prior to launching Kickstarter projects or new comic series is really hone in on the “Big Why?” behind their work. I’m interested hearing about your why? Why tell this story, why tell it now, and why are you and your creative team the right people to tackle this story?

Have you received any backlash for tackling issues of racial injustice, police brutality, etc. since launching?

You seem to be taking an unconventional approach with Black. What’re your plans with it post Kickstarter?

Now, in a past life, you were an editor at Zuda Comics, which was a short-lived DC’s webcomic imprint and initiative. (Zuda was also the first time I cashed a check for my comics work, having finished with the bronze in two Zuda competitions…so thanks!) While Zuda was a somewhat controversial initiative… in a lot of ways I see Kickstarter as a spiritual successor to Zuda, at least in terms of opening up opportunity for new creators that wasn’t there before. Thoughts?

When it comes to diversity in mainstream comics, are things getting better, worse, or about the same as they were five years ago? It seems like every single year, when asked what they want to see more of in the comics industry, “more diversity” is almost a stock answer, lauded by most. Five years from now, what has to happen to definitively say the industry has made true progress?

Speed Round

1) Finish this sentence: “Kickstarter is _______.”

“Awesome.” 

2) Let’s the pretend the powers that be at Kickstarter are listening (which you know they are)… if you could change one thing about the Kickstarter platform, what would it be?

“Being able to determine when your project starts and finishes.”

3) What’s your secret weapon? (Meaning a tool, resource, app, etc. that you couldn’t make comics without?)

“Google Docs and Messenger.”

4) Promotion is where even successful Kickstarter creators often drop the ball… Do you have a promotion tip for our listeners?

“Definitely understand who your audience is.”

5) Can you recommend one comic (not done by you) more people need to check out?

“Brian K. Vaughn’s Paper Dolls.”


Sponsor Mid-Roll

In a moment, I’m going to give you today’s ComixLauncher, but first, we need to thank our sponsor…

RBwave
The way you take notes might be about to change…

You’ve got to check out the Rocketbook Wave, a Cloud Connected Microwavable Notebook which is currently on Kickstarter.

The Rocketbook Wave provides the freedom of a traditional pen and paper notebook, while instantly blasting your notes into the cloud using your smartphone.

When you use Pilot Frixion pens with the Wave notebook, you can erase your notes using your microwave oven and reuse your notebook.

Machine Vision

The Rocketbook System is the combination of a special notebook and a free mobile app. Write notes and create designs in your notebook with a pen. Then, using patent-pending image capture technology, the Rocketbook app accurately and quickly captures and sends your notes to pre-configured cloud services.

IMAGE PROCESSING

In an instant, the Rocketbook app crops and enhances each page so your digital notes are more crisp and vibrant than the real thing.

Possibilities are endless

Daily Warm-up Sketch pumped out to social media or your tumblr in record time.
Layouts and cover concepts sketched by hand, and then lightning synched to dropbox to share with your team.
Combines the freedom of sketching anywhere, with the comfort of a digital archive.

Get yours at ComixLaunch.com/rocketbook which is our Kickbooster affiliate link.


ComixLauncher

It’s time for today’s ComixLauncher.
A ComixLauncher is a short, actionable activity you can and should do right now, or immediately after listening to the show. They’re all activities I’ve done myself, and will get you one step closer to a successful ComixLaunch. They’ll transform this Podcast from a passive, lean back activity centered around Tyler James, into an active, lean-forward activity centered around YOU.

ComixLauncher 33
Today’s ComixLauncher — Three Whys?

Why this project?
Why now?
Why are you the one to make it happen?

All of us our busy, but we all can spare 5 minutes to do this. [NA — What comes out on paper may surprise you. And if you’d like to share the results of your ComixLauncher with me, I’d love to see them. Email me at [email protected], subject line: ComixLauncher #33.]


Wrap Up

Wrap Up Questions
1) What’s one thing that creators do when interacting with editors that drives editors crazy?
2) What’s the best place to keep up with you online?

Thanks for Listening.

We’re going to go even deeper into both mindset, strategies and tactics for making KS work for you.


Have You Subscribed, Rated, or Reviewed ComixLaunch Yet?

If you’ve enjoyed this Session of ComixLaunch, I need you to do me a favor… actually, I need three favors. Please Subscribe, Rate and Review ComixLaunch on iTunes.

They’re the rocket fuel this show is running on, and the sooner you do it, the more powerful your action will be. Don’t wait to give us some love!

>>> CLICK HERE TO LEAVE A REVIEW ON iTUNES <<<

Provide a rating, 1-5 stars and leave an honest review.

This can be done in less than 2 minutes and could make HUGE difference to the show.

Transparency is a key currency for creators in the internet age, and a powerful force when ComixLaunch_Green032embraced
by Kickstarter creators. In this session, Tyler discusses the pros and cons of transparency. Then, he reveals the inner workings of ComixLaunch, sharing its key metrics for 2015, including total income and expenses.


Today’s Session is Sponsored by

Luminous Ages, a fantasy comic and art book now on Kickstarter. Visit ComixLaunch.com/luminous to find out more.


Session Table Setting

Welcome back to ComixLaunch the podcast to learn about mindset, strategies, and tactics for Kickstarter!
This is going to be an interesting show with just you and me, and we’re going to get real.

My topic for today is Transparency, why it’s powerful, why it’s important in 2016, and how it applies to Kickstarter.
And then I’m going to embrace transparency myself, and open up the ComixLaunch books and share our income and expenses for 2015. Every dollar that came in, and every dime that went out.

But first, a little housekeeping. Here’s something new and something super cool!  I want to hear from you. Emails are awesome.  Reviews on iTunes are rad.  But this is a podcast… I want to hear your VOICES…

I made it SUPER easy for you to send ComixLaunch a voice message…

Hop on over to ComixLaunch.com and there’s a little “SEND VOICEMAIL” widget.
Right there, from your desktop, laptop, or phone you can record a short, 90 second voice message.
Powered by SPEAKPIPE.
On Phone — will take a few extra click to grab the SPEAKPIPE app, but super easy and quick, and once you have it, you have it.

What I want to hear…

Feedback on the show.
Kickstarter Tips.
ComixLaunchers put to use.
Challenge me on something I’ve talked about.
Questions
Include your name and feel free to plug your comic or website… but remember, you’ve only got 90 seconds, so make ’em count.

I’m currently using the FREE Speakpipe service… which has limitations (hence the 90 second rule)… we’ll see if you guys use it. Hope you do… this is your show.

ComixLaunch Review on iTunes

It had to happen… after 26 5 star reviews, the streak was broken.
A few days ago, our first 3-star review came in… and I am EXTREMELY grafteful for it… because it ties perfectly to the theme of this episode. Transparency.
I’m going to read the review now… and I have a few comments on it, before transition into today’s episode.

To Published100+

Thank you. I appreciate you. I’ve heard you.

Getting critical feedback is a part of putting yourself out there… I’d like to say it gets easier as you get more experience (and it does… but never gets easy.)

You can hear 25 positive comments and thatta boys, and one mild criticism can cause a crisis of concience… OMG everyone hates me!
We fear pain more than we enjoy pleasure.

To the first point, “calling the show a constant-non stop advertisement for The ComixLaunch Course” —

Well, the high school debater in me would counter with the fact
that we produced and delivered 19 Episodes before ever mentioning The ComixLaunch Course
That of the 15.5 hours of podcasting I’ve probably spent less than 40 minutes discussing the course in any fashion.

But this isn’t a debate… and your perception is YOUR reality.
And if one listener is thinking that, others are too.
So, again, I’ve heard you… I’m going to come back to this at the end of the show.

To the second point, I strongly agree with most of what you have to say:

It IS good to get advice from many sources before launching a Kickstarter…

No one has a monopoly on good ideas.
That’s why I’ve made it a point to bring on some of the best minds in crowdfunding to share their wisdom with all of us.
It’s why I’m making a concerted effort to hear from more diverse voices in comics and outside.

And I totally agree with you, the best way to actually learn something is by doing it… and you will totally learn from your successes and your failures.

But some failures have already been learned by others… you don’t have learn every mistake the hard way.

But the best way to MASTER anything… that’s to teach it to others and have them have success with it… And that’s what I’m all about here, folks.
“Personally have a problem with anyone who sets themselves up as self-appointed authority”

Look, I said in the very first episode that I’m not a guru and I don’t have all the answers…
I’ve had success on Kickstarter… I’m certainly not the only one.
There is no one right way… but there are lot of things that work better than others, and that’s what this is a show about exploring…
The day I stop learning and being curious myself is the day this show no longer has value…

Finally, I will say that I wish you were more specific when you said that I contradict myself on a couple of statements.

Not saying you’re wrong… I’m human and make all kinds of stupid mistakes, especially when talking off the cuff.
But because if it’s an area of confusion, with seemingly contradictory material, that’s an area worth digging in deeper on.
But also, the reality is… this world is often very contradictory… and Kickstarter is no exception. While I love to erect frameworks to simplify the complex… there are exceptions to every rule.

For example, building and establishing a large audience of fans prior to launching is a key component of KS success.
And then some guy throws up a project to make potato salad with no audience at all, it goes viral and he raises $55K.

If it was all simple, if everything made perfect sense… this show would be done by now.
I hope most of you listening are glad it’s still going…

So, thank you for giving me the opportunity to address your comments, and I truly do appreciate the honest feedback.
ComixLaunch.com/review to Review the show

What is Today’s Episode About?

Transparency is a Key Currency of the Internet Age

The rise of the internet age and the evolution of social media has rapidly changed the expectations of customer / business relationships. Many have argued that “transparency is the new currency of business” and that if you’re not open, honest, and accountable… you’re increasingly irrelevant.
Expectations have shifted in all walks of life and this extends to Politics:

Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders
Opposite ends of the spectrum, but share a lot of traits.

Authentic
Say what they think, whether it’s popular or not.
Can’t be bought

Transparency has been core to what we’ve done at ComixTribe since it’s inception

I am a teacher by both training and at heart and one of the things that requires is honesty and transparency, when conveying the world as you know it to be. And one of the things we decided early on that was going to be baked into the DNA of ComixTribe was that we were not creating in a vacuum, rather we were going to be sharing our journey: victories, defeats and ah-ha moments as we go. And, to be completely “transparent” there was a certain element of marketing savvy to that. I did not see a ton of transparency in big publishers or publishers that were out there and I know for myself I’m attracted to people that tell it like it is and can be straight with me. So, I wanted to do that for other creators who were a bit further back on the winding, exciting road that is building a career in comics.

I also found that I learn things the best when I teach them to others, and many of the ComixTribe articles I write serve as a record and future reference for myself, almost like a diary or cheat sheet that I can go back to later. Some of the articles about goal setting and motivation, those are issues that I struggle with myself, and can serve as a time capsule. I can go back and get a pep talk from myself, sometimes. The fact that it helps other people as well is an added bonus.

So, there’s a lot there, but it’s something that has worked for ComixTribe. It’s built a lot of good will in the comics world for us, it has built us connections, and really helped get conversations going. I’ve been at conventions and had a number of people randomly come up to me and say, “Your article on how to do barcodes, or your Kickstarter tips are great resources…,” that’s always great to hear.

Why I’m not worried about giving away most of my best stuff:

Absolutely not. Here’s the thing: I’ve never been one to subscribe to zero sum thinking, especially when it comes to creative ideas like creating comics. I think a rising tide lifts all ships. I think that the more good comics that are out there, the faster the audience for comics will grow, and thus the more opportunity for me to sell to that growing pool of prospective buyers. So I don’t get down at seeing others’ success.

And as far as the advice I’m giving out at ComixLaunch podcast, I see it as part of a bigger mission, which is to raise the success rate of comic book Kickstarters overall. And not just the success rate for those that get funded, which is about 50%. I don’t view success on Kickstarter until every backer has been fulfilled, and is happy with their pledge and wants to come back again. A recent Kickstarter fulfillment report that found that 9% of all funded Kickstsarter projects fail to deliver their rewards. Some people might see that and think, “Hey that’s not that bad, less than one out of ten will fail,” but that’s not good enough for me. And I know if I was a backer and one out of ten projects I put money in never showed up, that would sour me on the platform.

Kickstarter is a game changer for creators and one of the greatest things to happen to the world of comics, especially for the independent creator. But, it’s something that could be ruined if the trend lines go the wrong way and more Kickstarters fail to deliver on their promises… that could spoil the well for everyone. So, in that way the Comixlaunch podcast and sharing my advice and helping other creators run better campaigns is actually selfish, because it’s going to ensure there are more backers having a positive experience on Kickstarter because more creators are doing it right and using the platform well. And thus it’s going to bring more people to the tent, so when ComixTribe is ready to launch our next project, it has a better shot at being successful. So I think the more great Kickstarters are out, there the better and stronger the platform will be for everyone.

Transparency is a Key Trait of Successful KS Creators.

Successful Kickstarter creators understand that transparency is an important currency in the information age.

They share more, and hide less.
They tell stories.
They get personal.
They let their backers get an inside look at who is behind the project, what they are doing, and why it’s so important to them.
They understand that many of their backers can’t even draw a straight line, and are completely fascinated by the creative process. So they invite them inside, and show them.
Because these creators have done their homework, they’re not afraid to share some financial information, including how the funds raised will be used and why coming to Kickstarter is necessary for them in the first place.

They are honest and open, likeable, accessible, and as a result, backers trust them.

And they also know that people like to support people they know, like and trust.

Transparency on your KS Page

Remember, backers prefer to support people and projects they know, like, and trust, and nothing builds trust faster than being honest and transparent. In the context of a Kickstarter page, that means:

Being open about who you are, what you stand for, and why this project matters to you.
Being clear about why you need the funding you’re asking for and what it will be used for.
Being clear about risks, challenges, and anything that might cause your project to go off track.
Your backers WANT to support you, but they want to know you’re accountable.
It may seem like a risk to be an open book. You might feel like you’re opening yourself up to judgement, that you’re making yourself vulnerable.
And in truth, you ARE.
But here’s a little secret…
Your backers respect vulnerability, because they respect authenticity. Transparency increases the engagement of your audience, which then increases the reach of your project.

Downside of Transparency

The downsides of being transparent are the fact that when you’re putting yourself out there and you’re making yourself potentially vulnerable, you’re also potentially inviting people to challenge your assertions. If you put something out there that whether intentionally or in most cases unintentionally is incorrect, you may have people taking that one bit of incorrectness and running with it, using it for their own agenda and calling you out on it. Whereas had you not started down a road of transparency in the first place they wouldn’t have bothered to make an issue of it. So that’s one downside.

I also think that there’s the potential of inviting more questions and more details than you’re willing to share. And I do think there is a line that can be crossed and it’s up to every creator to determine for themselves where that line is. Often the more you put out there the more they may ask you to continue to put out there. So it’s just important to know if you’re going down that road.

Also, I think for many creators getting started or early on, the numbers (sales or dollars) can be depressing. If ‘fake it till you make it’ is your strategy, it’s pretty hard to fake it when you’re putting out for the world to see that the critically acclaimed, highly-touted book you made lost hundreds or thousands of dollars. So I can see a potential downside there. But at the same time I think it’s important for creators to be real about where they are and to track things, and so for me putting stuff out there helps me know where Comixtribe is, so I can focus more on how far we’ve come and the very next step. Too many creators focus all their time on the disconnect between where they are currently and how far they still have to go to make it. That’s a recipe for never being happy in life.

The ComixLaunch 2015 Income and Expense Report

Why Share?

Actions speak louder than words — embrace transparency, open up the books and share what ComixLaunch looks like as a project from the financial side of things.
Inspired by Pat Flynn – Smart Passive Income Pod, John Lee Dumas of Entrepreneur on Fire, Scott Volker of The Amazing Seller and more…
What you measure you manage… and what you manage you can improve.
I’m sharing these without attaching a value judgment to them… numbers and metrics aren’t inherently bad or good… they’re just what they are.

Before we get to the financials, let’s look at what we did and how we did it:

May- June 2015

Bought Domain ComixLaunch
Built the Website
Learned how to Podcast!
Set up CL email list in Mailchimp

July 2015

Launched first weekly episode.

October of 2015

Ran ComixLaunch Survey – 100 responses.
Posted first blog post.

November 2015

Took applications for the ComixLaunch Course

December 2015

Enrolled 10 students in the course

2015 Year

25 Episodes
4,735 Downloads
2 Blog posts
103 email subscribers

Income Breakdown (May 2015-December 2015)

2015 Gross Total Income: $2,812.00

Product Sales – The ComixLaunch Course: $2,767.00 (98%)*

30 Day Full Refund policy

Sponsorship: $45.00 (2%)

Affiliate Income : $0.00

Expenses Breakdown (May 2015-December 2015)

2015 Total Expenses: $1,734

Website/ Hosting: $1,143.95 (66%)

ComixLaunch.com: $56.95
Pro.ComixLaunch.com: $997
LibsynPodcast Media Hosting: $90

VA: Editing: $490.00 (28%)

Advertising: $100.05 (5%)

Transaction Fees: $71.64 (4%)

Net Income 2015: $1,078

There you have it… ComixLaunch in 2015 in a nutshell.
I’ll have some closing thoughts after our sponsor.


Sponsor Mid-Roll

In a moment, I’m going to give you today’s ComixLauncher, but first, we need to thank our sponsor…

Luminous Ages

photo-original

Luminous Ages is a fantasy comic set in a universe where dragons, humans, gods, titans, demons, angels and beasts have the ability to control dream magic.!
Created by Australian writer/artist Anthony Christou, the adventure begins with a young farm boy, Thrakos, going through a painful transformation to become a Mage of the Mark. What path will he choose? What secret has his father been hiding from him? And why are dragons hunting him in the dreamworld?

It’s a full-color paperback comic available now on Kickstarter, and includes a bonus concept art book full of dragons and magic, that expands on existing and future characters and environments in the comic!

The first issue of Luminous Ages and the Concept Artbook is finished and can be ordered now.

Go to ComixLaunch.com/luminous to back the project.

Be sure to leave Anthony a comments on Kickstarter so he knows that we sent you!

If an intricate fantasy comic about dragons, creatures and human dream mages fighting for control over the real world and the dream world sounds good to you, check out Luminous Ages on Kickstarter today.

Luminous Ages.


ComixLauncher

It’s time for today’s ComixLauncher.
A ComixLauncher is a short, actionable activity you can and should do right now, or immediately after listening to the show. They’re all activities I’ve done myself, and will get you one step closer to a successful ComixLaunch. They’ll transform this Podcast from a passive, lean back activity centered around Tyler James, into an active, lean-forward activity centered around YOU.

ComixLauncher
SPEAKPIPE
Dudes and dudettes… I went and installed SpeakPipe on ComixLaunch.com to make this show more interactive…
So your ComixLauncher is to holler at me.
Tip, Question, Rant
90 seconds cuz we ain’t got all day.

All of us our busy, but we all can spare 5 minutes to do this. [NA — What comes out on paper may surprise you. And if you’d like to share the results of your ComixLauncher with me, I’d love to see them. Email me at [email protected], subject line: ComixLauncher #32.]


Wrap Up

I hope I’ve given you something to think about in terms of transparency.
And I hope, as creative entrepreneurs, it was illuminating to look under the hood at ComixLaunch… what it costs to put this show out, how it’s paid for, and how I’m looking to measure its impact.

  • Running a podcast does incur costs.
  • Creating does incur costs.
  • Time is our most valuable resource.
  • Building a sustainable business requires selling.
  • And right now 98% of what keeps this show going from a financial side is sales of The ComixLaunch Course.

That will change over time…

  • Sponsors will grow.
  • Affiliate income will trickle in.
  • Other products and services we’ll have to offer.

I believe in what I’m selling.

The ComixLaunch Course is the best thing I’ve ever done.
I’m proud of the comics and graphic novels and children’s books I’m publishing this year

The Podcast will always be free. And 95% of it will be information you can take or leave no questions asked…
But 5% is going to be selling…

Selling products and services that I 100% believe in.

If that’s a turn off for you as a listener… that’s perfectly fine. I’ve got nothing but love for you.

But I do hope when it’s your turn to sell, and if you’re listening to this show, I’m betting at somepoint in the near future you will… my wish for you is this:

You are extremely proud of what you’ve done.
You believe that everyone in your niche would be better off for buying it.
You unapologetically sell the hell out of it… ethically, passionately, and transparently.

This was a long one, but I had a lot to get off my chest…

Again, I want to hear your lovely (or manly) voices… SPEAKPIPE is installed on ComixLaunch.com and will let me do just that. Share your thoughts on this episode and more, and maybe YOU’LL hear yourself on a future session.

Thank you so much for listening, and for letting me walk with you, as you taken another step forward toward your next successful ComixLaunch.


Have You Subscribed, Rated, or Reviewed ComixLaunch Yet?

If you’ve enjoyed this Session of ComixLaunch, I need you to do me a favor… actually, I need three favors. Please Subscribe, Rate and Review ComixLaunch on iTunes.

They’re the rocket fuel this show is running on, and the sooner you do it, the more powerful your action will be. Don’t wait to give us some love!

>>> CLICK HERE TO LEAVE A REVIEW ON iTUNES <<<

Provide a rating, 1-5 stars and leave an honest review.

This can be done in less than 2 minutes and could make HUGE difference to the show.

The Freedom Journal campaign, the first Kickstarter run by ComixLaunch_Green6podcaster John Lee Dumas, raised more than $450K. In this session, Tyler breaks down five keys to the project’s monumental success.


Today’s Session is Sponsored by
KrakenPrint

Need a reliable printer for your next comic book or graphic novel print run? Then you need to unleash the Kraken. Head to ComixLaunch.com/Kraken for 5% off your entire first order.


Session Table Setting

Welcome back to ComixLaunch the podcast to learn about mindset, strategies, and tactics!

It’s a lovely, Saturday in New England at 50 degress and about 8 inches of snow.  I gave my new snowblower a work out yesterday and today the snow’s melting.

In today’s episode, I’m going to share my big takeaways from phenomenal project.

Thank you to Kevin Joseph for the iTunes review.
Shout Out to Andrew Taylor, ComixLaunch Listener — ADVENTURES OF GALAXY GIRL IN OUTER SPACE: A Sci-Fi Comedy

ComixLaunch.com/review to Review the show

What is Today’s Episode About?

You don’t raise $420K+ by being lucky…

Over the past month, I’ve been watching, learning, and taking serious notes on the campaign for The Freedom Journal by John Lee Dumas.

The Freedom Journal is a deluxe planner designed to guide anyone in setting & accomplishing their #1 goal in 100 days.

With about ten hours left, it has raised more than $424,000 on Kickstarter (and funded 2 schools in developing countries… more on that later.)

The origin of this book was that it was the answer to the question John gets asked the most: Of the 1,200 successful entrepreneurs he’s interviewed over the past few years, what’s their secret?

What’s the common thread that separates successful people from those who struggle? 

John’s answer:

“Successful people know how to set and accomplish goals. Those who struggle do not.” 

For me, the theme for the month of January was goal setting and thinking bigger.

I know I’m hardly alone in setting goals for the new year, but right around now is the time most resolutions fall by the wayside, as we sink back into our old routines.

Old routines…

The cynic in me would say that’s a pretty good two word description of the comic book industry.

Last year, with the critical success of books like And Then Emily Was Gone andOXYMORON: The Loveliest Nightmare, I came to the realization that the quality of the books ComixTribe was producing was beginning to outstrip our ability to market and sell them.

As publisher, that’s on me. 

In looking for answers on how to get more books into more readers’ hands, I began to realize that maybe looking solely at what other comic book publishers are doing wouldn’t give me the answers I was looking for.

So, I picked my head up a bit from the arcane world of the comics industry, dominated by two and a half publishers and controlled by a distribution monopoly, and started looking for ideas elsewhere.

It was then that I stumbled on John Lee Dumas, and his Entrepreneur on Firepodcast.

In just a few short years, John:

So, for good reason, when John does something… I pay attention. 

And even though Kickstarter is an area that I know a thing or two about, having successfully run 7 Kickstarter projects that have raised more than $160K in funding, and having launched a podcast of my own where I talk about the mindset, strategies, and tactics that work for comic creators on Kickstarter, I knew I’d learn a thing or two by backing JLD’s Kickstarter.

And I did.

5 Lessons from The Freedom Journal Kickstarter Campaign

1) Don’t develop in secret.

John had been talking about The Freedom Journal publicly for at least six months, and with his inner circle for a year, prior to launching Kickstarter.

It was no secret that he was launching on January 4.

Now, compare that to how so many creators in comics work… we don’t share ideas because we’re afraid someone else will steal them.

We don’t announce our projects in advance, because we want to launch with a bang, and we’re afraid if we talk about them too soon, no one will cover the launch.

And then… we launch to crickets.

And even though I know about the value of the pre-launch interest building, I realized that even I don’t start building buzz for my books and projects early enough.

2) Give ’em a juicy taste for free.

How has JLD built a seven-figure podcasting empire?

Well, for the most part, he’s done it by giving away a ton of valuable content for free… and not just the podcast.

His Free Podcasting Course, for example, has been an extremely valuable resource in empowering new podcasters (like me!) to launch and grow their podcasts.

So, it was no surprise that, for The Freedom Journal, he would give away a big chunk of the book for free to anyone.

The power of free is nothing new… but again, we as creators are still reluctant to embrace it.

We think, “If I give away too much, no one will buy it?”

However, as the most successful creatives on the planet have shown time and again, if what you give away is quality, people will buy what you have to sell… and in far greater quantities than if you didn’t provide valuable free content first.

3) When you launch, be everywhere.

Here’s another JLD lesson… once the campaign launched, JLD was everywhere.

He was on every podcast I listen to, he was on social media, he was being written up in magazine articles and covered on news sites…

EVERY. WHERE.

He was not afraid to promote his book, because he was entirely confident in what he was doing.

Again, very different in comics…

In the world of comics, 80% of the time is spent creating books, and maybe 20% of time is spent promoting them.

(Actually, for many creators, it’s more like 95% : 5%.)

Unfortunately, that’s a disservice to the creators, the books, and the medium itself.

Comics, as a medium, have never been better than they are today.

Wouldn’t it be nice if we let the rest of the world in on that secret?

4) Make your project about more than just yourself.

Obviously, with the income reports JLD publishes, it’s clear he’s not doing this Kickstarter because he needs the money… and that’s certainly different than most creators and publishers going to Kickstarter.

But JLD recognized that Kickstarter isn’t just about the funding… it’s about the channel, and the ability to get his ideas and brand in front of an audience outside of his own established platform.

He also recognized that a campaign would give him the opportunity to make this project about more than just himself and his product… the focus of The Freedom Journal campaign was on how the book could help other people achieve their #1 goal.

And he also used it as an opportunity to partner with Pencils of Promise, and use the proceeds from The Freedom Journal to build schools in developing countries.

I know personally that it can be hard to think beyond funding the next book or the next series… but this campaign has reminded me to try to think bigger, and think about the potential impact you and your audience can have to make the world a better place.

5) Empower and incentivize your audience to spread your campaign for you.

And finally, it’s no surprise that JLD’s campaign is employing the latest and the greatest tools in the crowdfunding space.

He invited all of his backers to become “Boosters” of his campaign, by signing up for a Kickbooster.me account, incentivizing them to spread the word about The Freedom Journal Kickstarter.

It was through this campaign that I first learned about Kickbooster, and I immediately reached out to co-founder Scott Adamson to find out more about the Kickbooster platform.

(You can hear all about my discussion with Scott and all the details on how Kickbooster works on ComixLaunch Session 029.)  

Personally, I think Kickbooster + Kickstarter has the opportunity to be a game changer for both backers and creators, and am excited to see that develop.

And of course, I have JLD to thank for bringing that service to my attention.

So, there you have it…

I wanted to share these lessons with you, a member of my ‘Tribe, who has been absolutely integral to everything we’re building here at ComixTribe.

If you think you could use an accountability partner to help you achieve your goals, do check out The Freedom Journal campaign before it ends in a few hours:

Click Here for THE FREEDOM JOURNAL on Kickstarter
I’m looking forward to receiving my Freedom Journal as a backer, and continuing to make big things happen through small, steady progress.

Best,

Tyler James

P.S. If you decide to get a copy of The Freedom Journal, let me know.  I’d love to hear what your #1 goal is… and look forward to checking back 100 days later to hear how you achieved it!


Sponsor – KrakenPrint

Last year, ComixTribe spent nearly $85,000 on printing.

While we rely on a number of printers to get our books to market, one printer I can strongly recommend is KrakenPrint

Our friends Jacob Way and Sam Amborn at Kraken Print offer:

  • Competitive pricing.
    Great customer service, especially for your first offset print run.
    Monthly storage if you do not want to store hundreds or thousands of books at home.
    Distribution options, including breaking down orders and shipping direct to Diamond or comic stores at their specially negotiated discounted rates on shipping.
  • And NOW they even offer Kickstarter fulfillment!
  • Kraken will pick, pack, and ship out orders for your backers.

If you want to unleash the Kraken, go to comixlaunch.com/kraken, mention the ComixLaunch podcast, and they’re going to knock 5% off your first print run…and they’re going to hook us up with a 5% credit.

It’s a classic win/win/win/win – You get a great price on printing, your backers get a beautiful offset printed book, you help the podcast out, and Kraken gets your business.

That’s comixlaunch.com/kraken for 5% off your entire first print run.


ComixLauncher

It’s time for today’s ComixLauncher.
A ComixLauncher is a short, actionable activity you can and should do right now, or immediately after listening to the show. They’re all activities I’ve done myself, and will get you one step closer to a successful ComixLaunch. They’ll transform this Podcast from a passive, lean back activity centered around Tyler James, into an active, lean-forward activity centered around YOU.

ComixLauncher 31 –
Tell someone about your Kickstarter idea.

All of us our busy, but we all can spare 5 minutes to do this. [NA — What comes out on paper may surprise you. And if you’d like to share the results of your ComixLauncher with me, I’d love to see them. Email me at [email protected], subject line: ComixLauncher #31.]


Wrap Up

The Five Key Lessons:
1) Don’t develop in secret.
2) Give ’em a juicy taste for free.
3) When you launch, be everywhere.
4) Make your project about more than just yourself.
5) Empower and incentivize your audience to spread your campaign for you.

Quote
“The Greater Danger for most of us lives not in setting our aim too high and falling short; but in setting our aim too low, and achieving our mark.” – Michelangelo

Thanks for Listening.

We’re going to go even deeper into both mindset, strategies and tactics for making KS work for you.
Thank you so much for listening, and for letting me walk with you, as you taken another step forward toward your next successful ComixLaunch.


Have You Subscribed, Rated, or Reviewed ComixLaunch Yet?

If you’ve enjoyed this Session of ComixLaunch, I need you to do me a favor… actually, I need three favors. Please Subscribe, Rate and Review ComixLaunch on iTunes.

They’re the rocket fuel this show is running on, and the sooner you do it, the more powerful your action will be. Don’t wait to give us some love!

>>> CLICK HERE TO LEAVE A REVIEW ON iTUNES <<<

Provide a rating, 1-5 stars and leave an honest review.

This can be done in less than 2 minutes and could make HUGE difference to the show.

Audio Player

What are the pros and cons of launching a KickstarterComixLaunch_Green030 campaign with a $1 goal? In this session, Tyler will give you his opinion on this “Dollar goal strategy” which is more common than you might think, and more importantly, will tell you what cold hard Kickstarter data says about its efficacy.


Today’s Session is Sponsored by

Luminous Ages, a fantasy comic and art book now on Kickstarter. Visit ComixLaunch.com/luminous to find out more.


Session Table Setting

Welcome back to ComixLaunch the podcast to learn about mindset, strategies, and tactics!

In today’s episode, we’re going to talk about a strategy on Kickstarter that has a 100% “success” rate… however, I’m saying the word success with quotation marks, or as Gloria from Modern Family says, “The Finger Bunnies”.

Thank you —
ComixLaunch Podcast Downloads are up this month — Very close to doubling our previous highest month, which was December.
I think a lot of you have Kickstarter Launches set as a New Years Resolution.
Also want to thank you for 5 Star reviews!
Please visit ComixLaunch.com/review to review the show.

Random Pro-tips
1) Take action on the things that make everything else easier… or irrelevant.
2) You Will Rarely Be Happy with the Cheapest Option

And before we dive in I want to give a quick ComixLaunch Course update. As you may know, Jeremy and I have a taking small group.  We had the first live session and the first office hourse completed.  It’s going even better than I had hoped.  There’s a lot of moving parts and we invested in a lot of new software and technology.  We’re dusting off the rust for this new experience.  As I told the course, they are the secret sauce and create the magic that happens.

There’s magic happening in the Private Facebook group with feedback, suggestions, and sharing.  Two creators who were new to each other realized they would be targeting similar demographic so they’re going to pool resources on media outets, PR strategies, etc.
It’s still early and there’s a lot to cover, but exactly what I hoped to happen is happening… and man does that feel good.

The course not open right now, and we have not set the next launch date, but we do have a Course Notification List at http://comixlaunch.com/course

The first course filled up fast… if the creators have the kinds of results I’m expecting, I’d expect round two to fill up even faster.


What is Today’s Episode About?

Russell’s Campaign – If you’d like to check out Russell’s campaign, and support the ComixLaunch podcast, go to comixlaunch.com/father which is our Kickbooster affiliate link.

What does my Gut tell me?
Pros
Cons

Not going to start there…

What do the facts tell me?
Anyone can give an opinion, and opinions are wonderful. Educated opinions more so.
But you know my goal is for ComixLaunch to become the AUTHORITY site
Not just opinion, but cold hard facts and data.

A while back, we talked to Walter Haas, formerly of Kickspy, back in Episode 14. I checked in with Walter who’s been helping KS campaigns optimize promotion and doing a lot with Facebook ads.   Episode 28 got a lot of positive feedback.  I know Walter is the man when it comes to data, so I asked him to work with me on a data scrape of comic book Kickstarter data, the motherload, ever comic book project, launched from 2014-2015.

Wow… so much information to be learned there. Right now, that data is powering a lot of the ComixLaunch Course, but eventually, some of it will make its way to this podcast… starting today.


Analysis of Funded Kickstarters from 2014-2015

What does the DATA tell me about the $1 strategy as it relates to Comic book projects?
Dollar campaign not that all that rare 38 campaigns in the comic category set a goal of $25 or less. Over 100 projects 100 or less. And 19 at the $1 mark.
Eliminated joke / spoof projects — ex. Egg Salad at Gen Con.

Let’s look at All the $1 comic book KS projects launched in 2014-2015 – 19

Avg amount raised by SUCCESSFUL $1 projects — $2,529

Low – $712 and a High of $5,514

So, Pretty good right. Does work… average 253,000% funded!
Success Rate – 100% Success Rate

 

Here’s something that’s interesting… What about super low dollar goal projects Over $1, but $25 or less?

20 Projects fit this
Average — $577 – Low of $10 and a high of $4,776.
Success Rate — 20 / out of 28 — 71% Success rate… but 8 failed to basically raise pizza money.

Cheap goal does not inspire backing.

 

How does the Average Comic KS Project compare to the Avg $1 KS Project?
$11,261 vs. $2,529 (4.5x)
50% Success Rate

 

But… what we don’t know is, would that project have done better if the goal was higher. How does funding relate to funding goal.

Funded Comic book Projects with a $2,000 goal – 101.
On average, raise $3065 (21% more than $1 goal.)
Success Rate – 101/197 = 51%

Funded Comic book Projects with a$2,500 goal – 80.
On average, raise $3884 (53% more than $1 goal.)
Success Rate – 80/ 134 = 60% Success Rate
Risk vs. Reward

Funded Comic Book Projects with a $10,000 goal
On average, raise $20,801 (722% more than $1 goal.) 48 / 98 failed
Success Rate – 48/ 136 = 33% Success Rate

Summary

$1 Pledge is a Gimmick.
The Gimmick does work… 100% success rate & 2K+ average.
If you’re going to go with a super low pledge strategy, $1 is far better than some other low dollar amount.
If successful, you’re better off setting a higher target. With the dollar goal you’re neutering one of the pieces of Kickstarter’s secret sauce: the climb toward a worthy, serious, goal.


Sponsor Mid-Roll

In a moment, I’m going to give you today’s ComixLauncher, but first, we need to thank our sponsor…

Luminous Ages

photo-original

Luminous Ages is a fantasy comic set in a universe where dragons, humans, gods, titans, demons, angels and beasts have the ability to control dream magic.!
Created by Australian writer/artist Anthony Christou, the adventure begins with a young farm boy, Thrakos, going through a painful transformation to become a Mage of the Mark. What path will he choose? What secret has his father been hiding from him? And why are dragons hunting him in the dreamworld?

It’s a full-color paperback comic available now on Kickstarter, and includes a bonus concept art book full of dragons and magic, that expands on existing and future characters and environments in the comic!

The first issue of Luminous Ages and the Concept Artbook is finished and can be ordered now.

Go to ComixLaunch.com/luminous to back the project.

Be sure to leave Anthony a comments on Kickstarter so he knows that we sent you!

If an intricate fantasy comic about dragons, creatures and human dream mages fighting for control over the real world and the dream world sounds good to you, check out Luminous Ages on Kickstarter today.

Luminous Ages.  


ComixLauncher

It’s time for today’s ComixLauncher.
A ComixLauncher is a short, actionable activity you can and should do right now, or immediately after listening to the show. They’re all activities I’ve done myself, and will get you one step closer to a successful ComixLaunch. They’ll transform this Podcast from a passive, lean back activity centered around Tyler James, into an active, lean-forward activity centered around YOU.
ComixLauncher
What do you want to know?

Today’s ComixLauncher

Write down three question that you want to know that data and Kickstarter analytics could answer.

All of us our busy, but we all can spare 5 minutes to do this. [NA — What comes out on paper may surprise you. And if you’d like to share the results of your ComixLauncher with me, I’d love to see them. Email me at [email protected], subject line: ComixLauncher #30.]


Wrap Up

What do YOU think about the $1 goal strategy? Let us know!

“Scared money don’t make no money” – Young Jeezy

Thanks for Listening.

We’re going to go even deeper into both mindset, strategies and tactics for making KS work for you.
Thank you so much for listening, and for letting me walk with you, as you taken another step forward toward your next successful ComixLaunch.


Have You Subscribed, Rated, or Reviewed ComixLaunch Yet?

If you’ve enjoyed this Session of ComixLaunch, I need you to do me a favor… actually, I need three favors. Please Subscribe, Rate and Review ComixLaunch on iTunes.

They’re the rocket fuel this show is running on, and the sooner you do it, the more powerful your action will be. Don’t wait to give us some love!

>>> CLICK HERE TO LEAVE A REVIEW ON iTUNES <<<

Provide a rating, 1-5 stars and leave an honest review.

This can be done in less than 2 minutes and could make HUGE difference to the show.

ComixLaunch_Green29Tyler breaks down an exciting conversation he had with the co-founder of Kickbooster, a new service that empowers and rewards your backers, fans, and affiliates for promoting your Kickstarter campaign. This just might be the “dead zone” cure Kickstarter creators have been searching for.


Today’s Session is Brought to You by

The Freedom Journal

Today’s session is brought to you by The Freedom Journal. Go to ComixLaunch.com/freedom to accomplish your #1 goal in just 100 days.

Freedom


Session Table Setting

Welcome back to ComixLaunch!

Have I got a good one for you today. Seriously, this one is a game changer, boys and girls, and if you’re one of my veteran Kickstarter creator listeners who has seen it all… clean out your ears and turn up the volume.

There’s a new service that empowers and rewards your backers, fans, and affiliates for promoting your Kickstarter campaign. This just might be the “dead zone” cure Kickstarter creators have been searching for.


Before I bring on my special guest to talk about this exciting new service… I just wanted to give a short update on the thing I’m most pumped up about in 2016…

The ComixLaunch Course!

In less than a week, the first live session will be taking place, a Pilot course, where I’m taking 10 hard working creators, all looking to launch a Kickstarter campaign within the next six months or so, step by step through the process of building a fundamentally sound campaign that will take their careers to the next level.

Jeremy Melloul and I have been working feverishly behind the scenes to get this course ready over the past month, and it’s exciting to finally be getting this thing Kicked off.  I’m nervous, I’m excited, I’m so looking forward to seeing these campaigns get built and get funded.  I’ve worked on a lot of projects, from small comic projects to half a million dollar video game projects, but this course, when all is said and done, may be the thing I’m most proud of.

So, yes, I’m pumped to finally be launching The ComixLaunch Course.
It’s a pilot program that filled up quickly. It’s currently closed, but we will likely be opening enrollment again in the spring.

If you might be interested go to comixlaunch.com/course

Okay… I talked a big game about today’s episode… time to back it up!


Whoops

I think I jinxed myself. I had my awesome interview via Skype.  I went and recorded the intro and was obviously pumped.  I went to get the recording only to find didn’t record properly, and I have no idea what went wrong.

Now, I thought about scrapping the episode, but the content and discussion was too good. I decided it was not fair to my guest to re-record, but will try to get him back at somepoint.
So, I’m going to share my notes from the awesome conversation with you… just the facts.
I thought about trying to cover this up, but it was a good teachable moment.
Always stand up tall, plant your feet, but keep those knees bent, stay flexible, and go with the flow.


Guest Introduction

My guest today is Co-Founder of Kickbooster, the first cash back affiliate program for Kickstarter!
He works with crowdfunding campaigns to help them reach their goals, and does marketing and community building for Kickbooster.

Welcome to ComixLaunch Mr. Scott Adamson!


Guiding Discussion Questions

Kickbooster

1) Okay, let’s start with the basics regarding Kickbooster.  What’s the elevator pitch for your service?

Our service is the world’s first affiliate program for crowdfunding campaigns!

  • What is an Affiliate Program?
    • Amazon
    • Online Marketing
    • Podcast Sponsorships
  • At Kickbooster we are trying our best to simplify the marketing aspect of your crowdfunding campaign. Simply put, Kickbooster allows campaign creators to run a referral program during their crowdfunding campaign and provides incentive for backers to share and promote your campaign.Kickbooster is crowdfunding campaign marketing made easy!
  • Getting Started
    • Signing up for Kickbooster is a snap – just click on the “Try Kickbooster for free” button on the Kickbooster home page and follow the simple steps. After you have successfully set up your Kickbooster account you will be presented with a unique campaign page that you can direct your boosters to and offer them incentives for sharing your campaign.
  • How does it work?
    • Kickbooster is a powerful, yet simple to use tool. The short answer is that we use Google Analytics tracking code that you place on your Kickstarter page to track when someone visits your campaign after clicking on one of your Booster’s referral URLs. It only takes a few minutes to setup and doesn’t require any development or design experience.
  • Who should use Kickbooster?
    • Everyone running a crowdfunding campaign can benefit from using Kickbooster. The best way to reach your fundraising goal is through word of mouth. Kickbooster gives your friends, family, and backers a reason to spread the word about your campaign, drastically increasing your chances of reaching your funding goal.
  • What does it cost?
    • • Kickbooster has NO upfront cost and is risk free to try with your campaign.
    • • We collect 3% of all the pledges generated through Kickbooster as payment,
    • plus an additional 10% that is paid out as commission to your Boosters (13% total).
    • If Kickbooster raises you $1000, we collect $130 once your campaign is successfully funded.
    • $100 is paid to your Boosters and $30 is used to cover the processing and administration fees.
    • • Commission is only collected on successfully funded campaigns. If your campaign
    • doesn’t get funded, it costs you nothing! Again, making it risk free!
    • • We handle everything else, including tracking and paying your boosters.
    • • You can track all of the pledges received in real-time using your Kickbooster Dashboard.
    • • Payment is due after you receive your funds from Kickstarter and no payment is due upfront.
    • • Becoming a Booster is completely free, in fact you make money for helping back campaigns.
    • There is no risk in trying Kickbooster!

 

2) How does Kickbooster help Kickstarter creators?  How does a creator promote their product with Kickbooster?  Is it open to any project?

  • Anyone running a Kickstarter can be a Kickbooster
  • Less 5 Minutes
  • need a live link
  • Google Analytics – video tutorials
  • Dashboard
    • # of Booster
    • Links
    • How many boosts
    • total dollars
    • Percentage of funding
  • Booster Leader Board
  • Default 10% Back
  • Set up incentives within Kickbooster
  • Use the service to leverage influencers

3) How does Kickbooster work from the backers or affiliates perspective?  What are the advantages of affiliate promotion, vs. other kinds of promotion?

4) Let’s talk money… How does Kickbooster make money?  How and when do affiliates get paid? How and when are Kickstarter creators charged?

In KS terms of service for creators, it clearly prohibits as rewards:

  • Financial incentives
  • Raffles, lotteries, and sweepstakes
  • Coupons, discounts, and cash-value gift cards
  • Did you talk to KS regarding whether or not your service was within their TOS prior to launching?

5) Backer attrition (backers who pledge but whose CC’s aren’t charged) is a reality of most campaigns. Does Kickbooster account for that?

6) Any big Kickbookster success stories so far?


 Sponsor Mid-Roll

In a moment, I’m going to give you today’s ComixLauncher, but first, we need to thank our sponsor…

The Freedom Journal

Freedom

Over the past two years, Podcaster Jon Lee Dumas has interviewed more than 1200 of the world’s leading creative entrepreuners. What sets these high performers apart?
It’s Their ability to SET and ACCOMPLISH goals.
It’s also the thing most struggling Entrepreneurs fail to do.

The Freedom Journal is a gorgeous, 300-page, faux leather-bound, gold embossed journal that will guide you in the accomplishment of your #1 S.M.A.R.T. goal:

S – Specific
M – Measurable
A – Attainable
R – Relevant
T – Time-bound

A unique, step-by-step process:

With daily tasks, nightly recaps, 10-day sprints and quarterly reviews, The Freedom Journal WILL hold you accountable to accomplishing your #1 goal in 100 days. And accountability is everything.

3d287fbcfc43d2c0151dca9ad36d2831_original

John has partnered with Pencils of Promise, and proceeds are going to build a school in a developing country on behalf of those who are supporting The Freedom Journal.

Backers of The Freedom Journal to know that by supporting this campaign they’re giving themselves the gift of accomplishing their #1 goal in 100 days AND giving the gift of education to those less fortunate.

And know that ComixLaunch Listeners… because ComixLaunch.com/freedom is an Kickbooster link, know that you’ll also be helping the show.

Even more — If you become a backer and you use The Freedom Journal with your #1 goal being the planning and launching of a Kickstarter… I’ll have you on the ComixLaunch show to talk about.

Go to ComixLaunch.com/freedom to accomplish your #1 goal in just 100 days.


ComixLauncher

It’s time for today’s ComixLauncher.

A ComixLauncher is a short, actionable activity you can and should do right now, or immediately after listening to the show. They’re all activities I’ve done myself, and will get you one step closer to a successful ComixLaunch. They’ll transform this Podcast from a passive, lean back activity centered around Tyler James, into an active, lean-forward activity centered around YOU.

Today’s ComixLauncher

Go to kickbooster.me and sign up to become an affiliate booster. 

All of us our busy, but we all can spare 5 minutes to do this. [NA — What comes out on paper may surprise you. And if you’d like to share the results of your ComixLauncher with me, I’d love to see them. Email me at [email protected], subject line: ComixLauncher #29.]


Wrap Up

Wrap Up Questions

1) Do you have any recommendations for Kickstarter creators?

Launch boom… http://launchboom.com/
rule of thumb
Formula – email list = campaign goal / 2% x average pledge level
Paid media through Facebook.

2) What’s the best place to keep up with you online?

kickbooster.me — Click the chat icon in the bottom right, and that’s usually Scott you’re talking to!

Thanks for Listening.

 


Have You Subscribed, Rated, or Reviewed ComixLaunch Yet?

If you’ve enjoyed this Session of ComixLaunch, I need you to do me a favor… actually, I need three favors. Please Subscribe, Rate and Review ComixLaunch on iTunes.

They’re the rocket fuel this show is running on, and the sooner you do it, the more powerful your action will be. Don’t wait to give us some love!

>>> CLICK HERE TO LEAVE A REVIEW ON iTUNES <<<

Provide a rating, 1-5 stars and leave an honest review.

This can be done in less than 2 minutes and could make HUGE difference to the show.

ComixLaunch_Green028In this session with media buyer and senior staff writer at HorrorTalk James Ferguson, we go deeper than ever before on the show on one of the most powerful advertising platforms on the planet for Kickstarter creators: Facebook. Why it works, and how to get started with Facebook advertising.


Today’s Session is Sponsored by the Johnny Bullet webcomic by Hervé St-Louis. Read it for free at comicbookbin.com/bullet.


Session Table Setting

Welcome back to ComixLaunch! This is the podcast to learn about mindset, strategies, and tactics… today, we’re going to touch on all three.

I’m excited about today’s episode, because the topic is one we’ve touched on before in the show, and has been a recurring theme among some of the most successful creators we’ve had on the show.

I’ve talked about my own limited, but exciting success with it around the edges of other topics… but today we’re going to focus in. What am I talking about?
FACEBOOK Advertising.

Now, as I’ve said before… I am no expert on FB advertising… but with success I’ve had… specifically surrounding the C is for Cthulhu brand, built 35 people to 12,131 in under a year… powered the biggest Kickstarter to date last year, and then a big online store launch in October, and a huge December on Amazon.


Today’s Guest

My guest today is a senior media buyer with 10 years of experience in the advertising industry. He spends his days handling the planning and execution for clients in a variety of fields across display, video, mobile, social, and programmatic campaigns. He’s certified by the IAB in both Sales and Ad Operations. And by night, he is a senior staff writer at HorrorTalk, heading up the comic coverage for the site including news, reviews, features, and convention coverage. He’s also an aspiring creator and co-host of the Raging Nerdon podcast.

Welcome to ComixLaunch Mr. James Ferguson

 


Guiding Discussion Questions

1) Why should comic book creators or anyone advertise?
2) How do you know if advertising will work for you or if you’re just going to be wasting money?
3) What would you say to a creator who says, “I’m launching a Kickstarter because I don’t have the funds to make my comic… so obviously I don’t have the funds to advertise.”
4) Why Facebook advertising vs all the others out there?
5) What are the Steps You go Through When Launching a Facebook Ad Campaign

  • Evaluate Your Assets
    Before you start any ad campaign, take a good look at what you have available. If you’re promoting a comic book Kickstarter, odds are you have some great artwork. Video is nice, but not a must have as it tends to be a little more expensive.
  • Select Your Images Carefully
    Think of your own user experience for a moment. What catches your eye as you’re scrolling through the news feed? Facebook optimizes ads based on performance, but you’re probably working with a rather limited budget, so you won’t have the time or space to do a whole lot of testing and learning.
    2-5 images
  • Set a Goal
    Pick one and stick to it. Don’t go into a campaign with the intention of getting new email subscribers, new page likes, new backers, new site visitors, and more. Those are all different KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) and all utilize different tactics. You can have a primary and secondary goal, but once again, keep your budget in mind. The goal should be realistic and attainable. Facebook allows you to choose your goal when creating a new campaign. (see below screenshot) The goal you select alters the algorithm used to optimize the campaign.
  • Set a Budget
    You can spend as much or as little as you want. Facebook has no shortage of ad space given the 1.4 billion users it has accessing the platform every day. If you were a traditional advertiser, you’d want to have a larger budget to work with and go after a broad audience. You are working in the opposite direction. Whether we like it or not, comics aren’t as popular as something like Coca Cola. You want to get very granular with your audience which means you’ll have a very small group which means a rather small budget. This is all up to you though. You can do $20 or $200 or $2,000.
  • Define Your Audience
    I’m sure you’ve pitched your book out the wazoo by this point so you know what to compare it to. Is it The Wizard of Oz meets Hellraiser? Well, use those as keywords to target. The Facebook ad builder is like a big Chinese food menu with so many options to choose from. The problem is that you need to have an idea of what you’re looking for first. You can start with the people that already like your page and friends of those people. Then layer in the additional targeting. Get as specific as possible. Don’t just type in “comics” and call it a day. Add in any similar books, comics, movies, and TV shows.
  • Got an Email Newsletter?
    Regardless of the size of an advertiser, there is nothing more valuable than first party data. If you’re a creator, this would be your email subscriber list. I cannot stress this enough. These are people that have already raised their hand and volunteered to receive emails from you on a regular basis. Unfortunately, as you are no doubt aware, that doesn’t mean that they’re opening every email you send them. You can upload that subscribe list into Facebook and tell all those people (assuming they have Facebook profiles) about your Kickstarter. Taking it a step further, you can use that audience as a base to build “look-a-like” models. These are essentially people that exhibit the same online behavior or like the same types of things as your existing audience. This means you’ll take your existing fan base and expand it to find people just like them across Facebook.
  • Flighting
    You can have ads run as often or as infrequent as you like. Maybe you want to do a little boost to get you through the mid-campaign doldrums or if you’re coming up short on your goal and time is running out, a last minute push could put you over the line. You can do this as a daily burst or as a continuous flight.

6) How much do you have to spend on Facebook to see results?

7) Should you boost posts or run ads?
Pin a Post!

8) Is the advertising platform built into Facebook good enough, or do you recommend the power editor?

9) Good resources for people interested in learning more about Facebook advertising?


Sponsor Mid-Roll

In a moment, I’m going to give you today’s ComixLauncher, but first, we need to thank our sponsor…

Johnny Bullet

Johnny Bullet is really the kind of comics that we don’t get enough of. Hervé St-Louis, also known as Toon Doctor, creates it.

It’s a web comic that has the look and feel of a classic newspaper comic strip, except that it’s published weekly web comic.

Johnny Bullet is a professional drag racer who gets in trouble with the law, bad guys, and of course bad women!

You can tell that Hervé, Johnny Bullet‘s creator, likes cars and drag racing. There are muscle cars everywhere!

There is really no comic like Johnny Bullet. It’s been described as Michel Vaillant meets the Dukes of Hazzard. Set in the 1970s the characters sport afros, and bell-bottoms.

It’s fun to read a crime comic that’s serious but without being dark and gloomy. Johnny Bullet is your classic good guy!

While Hervé tells me that he isn’t ready to launch his Kickstarter just yet, there’s nothing stopping you from reading Johnny Bullet at ComicBookBin dot com slash bullet (comicbookbin.com/bullet).

Leave him comments so he knows that we sent you!

Johnny Bullet. It’s a comic about a man and his car.


ComixLauncher

It’s time for today’s ComixLauncher.

A ComixLauncher is a short, actionable activity you can and should do right now, or immediately after listening to the show. They’re all activities I’ve done myself, and will get you one step closer to a successful ComixLaunch. They’ll transform this Podcast from a passive, lean back activity centered around Tyler James, into an active, lean-forward activity centered around YOU.

ComixLauncher

Today’s ComixLauncher — For Facebook users…

This ComixLauncher is for those of you who already have dedicated Facebook fanpages for your projects. (If don’t have one yet… your CL is to go create one.)

Create two very similar posts promoting your content. Make them visual, maybe share a cool cover image or panel from your series.
Now, I want you to boost one of your post for 1 day for only $1.

In 48 hours, check both posts, in terms of People reached. How much bang did you get out of your buck?

All of us our busy, but we all can spare 5 minutes to do this. [NA — What comes out on paper may surprise you. And if you’d like to share the results of your ComixLauncher with me, I’d love to see them. Email me at [email protected], subject line: ComixLauncher #28.]


Wrap Up

Wrap Up Questions

1) Do you have any recommendations for creators with horror related Kickstarter projects for getting covered at places like HorrorTalk.com?

KS friendly

2) What’s the best place to keep up with you online?

Thanks for Listening.
Tease future episodes

We’re going to go even deeper into both mindset, strategies and tactics for making KS work for you.


Have You Subscribed, Rated, or Reviewed ComixLaunch Yet?

If you’ve enjoyed this Session of ComixLaunch, I need you to do me a favor… actually, I need three favors. Please Subscribe, Rate and Review ComixLaunch on iTunes.

They’re the rocket fuel this show is running on, and the sooner you do it, the more powerful your action will be. Don’t wait to give us some love!

>>> CLICK HERE TO LEAVE A REVIEW ON iTUNES <<<

Provide a rating, 1-5 stars and leave an honest review.

This can be done in less than 2 minutes and could make HUGE difference to the show.

ComixLaunch_Green027In this session, Tyler speaks with Madeleine Holly-Rosing, author of Kickstarter For The Independent Creator: A Practical and Informative Guide To Crowdfunding, about how to know if and when you’re ready to launch your Kickstarter.


This session is sponsored by KrakenPrint.

Need a reliable printer for your next comic book or graphic novel print run? Then you need to unleash the Kraken. Head to ComixLaunch.com/Kraken for 5% off your entire first order.


Session Table Setting

Hello and Welcome
If you are here to learn about the mindset, strategies, and tactics that creators like you are using to fund there projects, you’re in the right place.
If this is your first time tuning into ComixLaunch, welcome… we’ve have and extra special show for you today.

Guest Introduction
My guest today is a writer for TV, film, novels, and comics, who has successfully raised nearly $22K on the Kickstarter platform for her paranormal steampunk series Boston Metaphysical.

She holds an MFA in Screenwriting from UCLA, and is the author of Kickstarter For The Independent Creator: A Practical and Informative Guide To Crowdfunding, which she’s also taught as a class at Pulp Fiction Books and Comics in Culver City, California.

Welcome to ComixLaunch Madeleine Holly-Rosing!


Guiding Discussion Questions

  1. What are some of your pre-launch prerequisites… things creators must do or have in place before launching?
    – FB Page account
    – Twitter account
    – Committed backers – 25-35%
    – Mailing List
    – Cons
  2. What are some tell-tale signs that maybe your project has launched too soon?
  3. There is a lot to running a Kickstarter… and it can seem like an overwhelming for many creators. What are the 2-3 most important things to focus on? Are there any less important areas of a Kickstarter that you see creators spending more time on than necessary?
  4. Do you think its possible to be over-prepared for a campaign? What about creators who continually delay launching because they’re “paralyzed by pursuit of perfection?” How would you get such a creator to pull the trigger?
  5. You wrote a book, Kickstarter For The Independent Creator: A Practical and Informative Guide To Crowdfunding, sharing lessons learned from your crowdfunding experience. How did you go about structuring your book? What are one or two key takeaways you hope readers will get from your book?
    – You can do it!
    – Plan early
    – How you find the backers?

ComixLaunch Lightning Round

SPEED ROUND of Questions (Short/ Quick answers 30 seconds or so.)
1) Finish this sentence: “Kickstarter is _______.”

“Crowdfunding for creative projects.”

2) Let’s the pretend the powers that be at Kickstarter are listening (which you know they are)… if you could change one thing about the Kickstarter platform, what would it be?

“I would add on the ability for backers to pledge to more than one tier.”

3) What’s your secret weapon? (Meaning a tool, resource, app, etc. that you couldn’t make comics without?)

“My fellow creators.”

4) Fulfillment is where even successful Kickstarter creators often drop the ball… Do you have a fulfillment tip for our listeners?

“Make sure you’ve added enough postage to your reward tiers.”

5) Can you recommend one comic (not done by you) more people need to check out?

Oh, Hell by George Wassil

 


Sponsor – KrakenPrint

Last year, ComixTribe spent nearly $85,000 on printing.

While we rely on a number of printers to get our books to market, one printer I can strongly recommend is KrakenPrint

Our friends Jacob Way and Sam Amborn at Kraken Print offer:

  • Competitive pricing.
    Great customer service, especially for your first offset print run.
    Monthly storage if you do not want to store hundreds or thousands of books at home.
    Distribution options, including breaking down orders and shipping direct to Diamond or comic stores at their specially negotiated discounted rates on shipping.
  • And NOW they even offer Kickstarter fulfillment!
  • Kraken will pick, pack, and ship out orders for your backers.

If you want to unleash the Kraken, go to comixlaunch.com/kraken, mention the ComixLaunch podcast, and they’re going to knock 5% off your first print run…and they’re going to hook us up with a 5% credit.

It’s a classic win/win/win/win – You get a great price on printing, your backers get a beautiful offset printed book, you help the podcast out, and Kraken gets your business.

That’s comixlaunch.com/kraken for 5% off your entire first print run.


ComixLauncher

It’s time for today’s ComixLauncher.

A ComixLauncher is a short, actionable activity you can and should do right now, or immediately after listening to the show. They’re all activities I’ve done myself, and will get you one step closer to a successful ComixLaunch. They’ll transform this Podcast from a passive, lean back activity centered around Tyler James, into an active, lean-forward activity centered around YOU.
ComixLauncher

Today’s ComixLauncher —

Pull out a sheet of paper or your favorite list app. (I love Workflowy.)
Set a timer for 5 minutes and braindump…

All the things you need to do before you can launch your next Kickstarter project.

This may seem like a lot, may seem overwhelming, but trust me, naming it, writing it down, and putting it in one place is the first step in taking control over it.

All of us our busy, but we all can spare 5 minutes to do this. [NA — What comes out on paper may surprise you. And if you’d like to share your ComixLauncher with me, I’d love to see them. Email me at [email protected], subject line: ComixLauncher #27.]


Wrap Up

1) Do you have one final piece of advice for CREATORS on running a Successful KS campaign for the ComixLaunch listeners?

“Be sure to get enough sleep. And eat right and exercise.”

2) What’s the best place to keep up with you online?

FB – https://www.facebook.com/BostonMetaphysicalSocietyComic
Twitter @MHollyRosing
Web – http://www.bostonmetaphysicalsociety.com/
Madeleine’s book – Kickstarter For The Independent Creator: A Practical and Informative Guide To Crowdfunding

Thank you so much for listening, and for letting me walk with you, as you taken another step forward toward your next successful ComixLaunch.


Have You Subscribed, Rated, or Reviewed ComixLaunch Yet?

If you’ve enjoyed this Session of ComixLaunch, I need you to do me a favor… actually, I need three favors. Please Subscribe, Rate and Review ComixLaunch on iTunes.

They’re the rocket fuel this show is running on, and the sooner you do it, the more powerful your action will be. Don’t wait to give us some love!

>>> CLICK HERE TO LEAVE A REVIEW ON iTUNES <<<

Provide a rating, 1-5 stars and leave an honest review.

This can be done in less than 2 minutes and could make HUGE difference to the show.

ComixLaunch_Green2In this session, Tyler and Jeremy talk to Russell Nohelty of Wannabe Press about tapping into the power of Kickstarter and the techniques of successful online marketers to launch a new publishing venture.


Today’s Session is Sponsored by the Johnny Bullet webcomic by Hervé St-Louis. Read it for free at comicbookbin.com/bullet.


Today’s Guest

Our guest today is a writer of film, TV, animation, comics, and novels.  After buying back the rights to all of his properties and going independent, he successfully funded his first Kickstarter in 2014, which he used to jumpstart the launch of his publishing company, Wannabe Press. Since then he’s successfully funded a second Kickstarter campaign all while running and growing his company.

Welcome to ComixLaunch, Russell Nohelty!

Today’s Topic:  Kickstarter as a launching pad for new publishers.

Guiding Questions

1) Decision To Go Independent.

Russell bought back all the rights to all of his properties to release them himself. Why did he make this decision and what did the process entail?

2) Using Kickstarter as a launching pad for your career in comics.

Part of the re-release was putting together a print run of Ichabod Jones: Monster Hunter – which was previously published as a digital-only comic.
Were any obstacles to doing a Kickstarter for a book that had already been released, albeit digitally?

3) How to maintain momentum after the Kickstarter.

Let’s excavate some strategies he used to take support from his Kickstarter to Wannabe Press and his other titles.

4) Growth with a Second Kickstarter.

A year after Ichabod, he launched the Kickstarter for Katrina Hates the Dead.
He almost doubled his # of backers (from 162 to 294) and raised $3,000 more (~$5,500 to ~$8,800)

5) Key Tips

  • Build and Audience with Landing pages
  • Facebook ads
  • Webcomics
  • Built mailing list 0 – 1,300 people
  • Auto-responder sequence
    • How did he activate his past backers for this new Kickstarter?
    • How did he acquire new fans throughout the year?
  • SumoMe
  • Project Wonderful
  • https://www.krowdster.co/

ComixLaunch Lightning Round

SPEED ROUND of Questions (Short/ Quick answers 30 seconds or so.)

1) Finish this sentence: “Kickstarter is _______.”

“The absolute best way to launch your creative career.”

2) Let’s the pretend the powers that be at Kickstarter are listening (which you know they are)… if you could change one thing about the Kickstarter platform, what would it be?

“I love 99.9% of Kickstarter. I think they could be more transparent. How do you go about becoming a staff pick? How do you run the most successful campaign possible?”

3) What’s your secret weapon? (Meaning a tool, resource, app, etc. that you couldn’t make comics without?)

“Buffer is probably the number one but Krowdster for a campaign.”

4) Fulfillment is where even successful Kickstarter creators often drop the ball… Do you have a fulfillment tip for our listeners?

“Do not ask people to do anything for your next campaign until every single person has a book in their hand.”

5) Can you recommend one comic (not done by you) more people need to check out?

“I’m going to say Shiver Bureau by Walter Ostlie.”

 


Sponsor: Johnny Bullet

Johnny Bullet is really the kind of comics that we don’t get enough of. Hervé St-Louis, also known as Toon Doctor, creates it.

It’s a web comic that has the look and feel of a classic newspaper comic strip, except that it’s published weekly web comic.

Johnny Bullet is a professional drag racer who gets in trouble with the law, bad guys, and of course bad women!

You can tell that Hervé, Johnny Bullet‘s creator, likes cars and drag racing. There are muscle cars everywhere!

There is really no comic like Johnny Bullet. It’s been described as Michel Vaillant meets theDukes of Hazzard. Set in the 1970s the characters sport afros, and bell-bottoms.

It’s fun to read a crime comic that’s serious but without being dark and gloomy. Johnny Bullet is your classic good guy!

While Hervé tells me that he isn’t ready to launch his Kickstarter just yet, there’s nothing stopping you from reading Johnny Bullet at ComicBookBin dot com slash bullet (comicbookbin.com/bullet).

Leave him comments so he knows that we sent you!

Johnny Bullet. It’s a comic about a man and his car.


ComixLauncher

It’s time for today’s ComixLauncher.
A ComixLauncher is a short, actionable activity you can and should do right now, or immediately after listening to the show. They’re all activities I’ve done myself, and will get you one step closer to a successful ComixLaunch. They’ll transform this Podcast from a passive, lean back activity centered around Tyler James, into an active, lean-forward activity centered around YOU.

ComixLauncher – 026

In two sentences or less, describe your brand as a comic book creator. And if you don’t have one established yet, if you’re new, then tell me how you’d like fans to describe who you are and what you create.

If you’d like to share your comixlauncher with me, I’d love to hear it. [email protected] subject ComixLauncher 026.


Wrap Up

Where can our listeners connect with you?

Twitter: @russellnohelty

Facebook: Russell Nohelty

Instagram: russellnohelty

Thank you so much for listening, and for letting me walk with you, as you taken another step forward toward your next successful ComixLaunch.


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