When you are planning a crowdfunding campaign, there are several questions you should ask yourself to ensure it is successful. Asking the following questions will help you determine whether or not you should run a Kickstarter or Indiegogo campaign, and will help you plan, execute and receive the most funds possible for your project, should you choose to start one.

Does my idea solve a real problem that people have?

The most successful ideas, products and services are ones that help solve problems or otherwise provide value. Those considering backing your project will be more apt to support it if they can see its value.

Will my idea be valuable to others?

If others do not see value in your idea – even if it is art – it will be difficult to sell it to anyone, let alone investors. Any idea you run through Kickstarter or Indiegogo should be tested for value before your campaign begins.

Is my idea unique, distinctive or different?

Naturally, ideas that are unique or different from others you can already find on the market will be the most valuable and generate the most interest. Backers are looking for something intriguing that catches their interest, so products with a unique edge will be easier to market. Additionally, due to the nature of crowdfunding, backers usually have to wait months or even years to receive their rewards. If there is already a similar product readily available, backers will be less likely to contribute to your project.

Is my idea specific?

Having a specific idea for your Kickstarter campaign is important because backers want to see the details and really understand what you are putting together before they invest in your project. Only having a vague idea reduces investor confidence, and may be a sign that you are beginning your campaign prematurely.

How have similar projects performed on Kickstarter or Indiegogo?

Taking a look at how other projects fared on Kickstarter or Indiegogo will help you measure the potential success of your own. Campaigns that far exceed their projected funding amount have run into serious issues fulfilling demand, so see if any similar projects have experienced an overwhelming number of backers.

Can I easily explain my project to others in 1-2 minutes?

People tend to lose interest very quickly. They also want to know that your product is easy to use and understand. A short explanation helps ensure this is the case. This is especially important to keep in mind as you produce your campaign video. If you don’t feel that you can easily explain your product and the product’s backstory in under 2-3 minutes, you may want to reconsider whether a Kickstarter or Indiegogo campaign is the right choice.

What do my friends and family think of my idea?

If you are not able to convince your friends and family of your idea’s value, it will be extremely difficult to convince backers. Family and friends are generally much softer and more complimentary than people who do not know you, so if you cannot win them over, convincing Kickstarter backers may be quite difficult.

What do people who are NOT my friends and family think of my idea?

With that being said, don’t rely solely on family and friends to provide feedback on your idea, as they may be afraid to be too critical. Those who are not your friends and family will be more likely to provide you with constructive criticism to make your idea even better, and they are also more likely to point out a bad idea. Acquaintances and strangers can be a great sounding board for your ideas and can offer suggestions and feedback that you can use to make a Kickstarter or Indiegogo campaign more successful.

Am I willing to ask my family and friends as well as complete strangers to fund my project?

The most successful crowdfunding projects receive funding from both those they know and those they don’t know. Therefore, being willing to ask both your family and strangers for support through backing is critical, and if you are unable to do so you may want to rethink your crowdfunding project.

How much time am I willing to put into crowdfunding my idea?

A crowdfunding project takes up a lot of time from start to finish. From the moment you decide to launch a campaign until the moment the final reward is delivered to the very last backer, you must be willing to spend time designing features, planning updates, communicating with backers, managing customer service and doing all the other work it takes to run a successful campaign.

How passionate am I about my idea?

Passion is especially vital for a successful crowdfunding project. If you aren’t passionate about your own idea, you will have a hard time putting in the time and effort required to be successful, and you’ll also have a hard time convincing others to see its value.

Does my idea follow crowdfunding platform rules?

Finally, it is necessary to make sure your idea follows the rules set in place by the crowdfunding platform you choose. If you fail to ensure this is the case, you will find you have wasted a lot of time and money preparing for your campaign.

To learn even more about launching and managing a successful Kickstarter or Indiegogo campaign, or for help deciding if a crowdfunding campaign is the right way to launch your product, check out our weekly podcast and subscribe to our newsletter.