Updated: Oct 8
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My name is George and I’m the founder of YG Consultancy. I used to work at Kickstarter on the Design and Technology outreach team before starting my own crowdfunding agency. My regularly organized Reddit AMAs, alongside my experience running a crowdfunding agency, helped me to discover the most commonly asked question.
Q: Is there anything I can do leading up to a campaign / the first few hours of a campaign to improve algorithm visibility?
Excellent question! The answer is a resounding yes! Especially when dealing with Kickstarter (Indiegogo works a bit differently), there are three things you can do that really help. The first thing is to get fully funded within the first 24 hours. That was one of the metrics we used at Kickstarter to see if a campaign is popular. The algorithm works in mysterious ways, so it’s hard to fully grasp the entire range of metrics it uses, but getting fully funded within the first 24 hours is a must.
You can do this by having a strong pre-launch. In order to get fully funded within the first 24 hours, you need to make sure that your funding goal on Kickstarter isn’t too high, especially relative to how much pre-launch you’ve done. Ensure it’s actually achievable because you only have one chance during these first 24 hours.
Another important factor is your launch time & date. Kickstarter’s algorithm doesn’t so much look a how much money you’ve raised in absolute numbers. It doesn’t favor a campaign that raises a million dollars over a campaign that raises $50,000 because it focuses on the frequency of the pledges. The more frequent the pledges are, the more likely it becomes that the algorithm marks your campaign as interesting.
This means it’s important to think of your launch day and time since launching on a Tuesday morning will generally lead to more interaction and a higher frequency of pledges than launching on a Sunday night at 11 PM or on a national holiday. An oddly timed launch is impossible to compensate for throughout your campaign because you’ll miss that 24-hour window.
The final thing you can do to help the algorithm is to get the famous Project We Love badge on your campaign page. This, however, isn’t something the algorithm decides, but rather a team member from Kickstarter. I used to be one of those members so I can tell you it’s an editorial decision. The only way to get it is either through having such a cool campaign it gets noticed by the Kickstarter team organically, or, and this is usually a lot easier, you can reach out to the people who are the outreach lead.
Find them online, ask other creators who have worked with Kickstarter before, and email them to introduce your project. Make it convincing because ideally you’d like to receive the Project We Love badge before your Kickstarter campaign launches. Getting that badge greatly improves your algorithm visibility and usually helps a lot with getting fully funded within the first 24 hours.