These days, success on Kickstarter goes beyond just writing a little about your product on the platform, then launching the project and waiting for the donors to come pouring in. It takes serious planning and effort well before launching a campaign.

Before you begin preparing for a crowdfunding campaign, it’s helpful to know what other successful campaigns have done. Below we’ve rounded up what we’ve found successful campaigns seem to have in common.

Start Planning Well In Advance

Many times when we interview Kickstarter and Indiegogo creators for our podcast, we ask when they started preparing for their project. Oftentimes, we hear they’ve spent one or more years creating their product, and several months getting ready to launch on Kickstarter. Don’t expect your crowdfunding project to happen overnight. In addition to creating the materials for your campaign page such as graphics and a video, you need to build up an audience, line up press coverage and generally spread the word that your project is launching soon.

Video

As previously mentioned, you’ll need to spend time creating a campaign video before you launch. Crowdfunding videos are something we’ve written about in-depth before, but all successful Kickstarter and Indiegogo projects have a good video. Above all, make sure that your video is concise, compelling and high-quality. It is the first thing backers see when they visit your page, so make the most of this opportunity to get in front of them.

Rewards

There’s no golden standard for setting up the rewards or perks section of a crowdfunding page because it depends so much on what the product is. However, there are things you can do to make your rewards section more appealing to potential backers.

First, think about pricing. You’ll want to price rewards as low as you can without losing money. Backers usually expect to pay less on Kickstarter than the future retail price, so keep this in mind as you’re creating the rewards section. You may also want to include a limited number of early bird rewards, as they create a sense of urgency that can help you gain some initial momentum and hit your funding goal sooner.

Second, keep your rewards simple and organized. You may be able to offer 20 different rewards combinations, but that’s likely to confuse future backers. Same goes for add-ons – in general, simpler is better. As you’re setting up rewards, keep things organized by arranging your rewards by quantity, and from least expensive to most expensive.

Facebook Ads

Successful Kickstarter and Indiegogo campaigns almost always use Facebook ads to direct traffic to their crowdfunding project. This is because Facebook’s ad platform allows you to inexpensively target users by interest. We’ve seen huge spikes in the amount of money coming in when projects began running properly-targeted Facebook ads. Be sure to have a budget set aside before you launch for building up your email list, and after you launch for sending traffic to the campaign page.

For more tips for creating and launching a successful crowdfunding campaign, tune in to our podcast each week or sign up for our newsletter.