Top 5 Cons when launching your book traditionally instead of on Kickstarter

top 5 cons to a traditional book launch

Affiliate Disclaimer: The following article contains Amazon affiliate links below.

Many authors (me included) who experience success on Kickstarter and build a large audience will then launch subsequent books directly to Amazon or host pre-orders on their websites. 

Why? 

Mostly time and effort.

Kickstarter campaigns require a lot of organization and it’s very tempting to skip over all of the hype building and coordination of multiple stakeholders and publish directly on Amazon via Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) so that your book is available TODAY and ready to buy.

Children’s book author Leigha Huggins, raised nearly $14k for her first book, Love Lottery, on Kickstarter and recently released her second book, The Giving World, in October 2021 directly on Amazon.

I asked her what her honest experience was launching in both methods and she generously shared her true feelings on a Kickstarter vs. traditional book launch. 

The following is from an interview with Leigha in her words.

What results did you see in a 30-day launch on Amazon vs. a 30-day Kickstarter campaign?

To be quite honest, the traditional book launch has been a bit of a letdown. I haven’t been really impressed with the soft launch of The Giving World on Kindle Direct Publishing.

I think we broke $100 in sales during our first week, but it was nothing compared to the excitement of reaching a goal of $4,700 on day one of my Kickstarter for Love Lottery. (See Fully Funded in 24 Hours for how Leigha did this.)

What are three pros and three cons you’ve experienced launching your book traditionally compared to your previous Kickstarter campaign?

Traditional book launch on Amazon

Pro #1 – I don’t have to fulfill orders (I’m printing with KDP so orders are all handled by Amazon).

Pro #2 – I didn’t have to create a promo video.

Pro #3 – Instant availability – readers don’t have to wait for the campaign to be over or for a print run of books.

Con #1 – There is no urgency. It’s one of those things that I think people will just check it out at some point on Amazon, but there’s no incentive for them to do so during launch week.

Con #2 – Just hitting the publish button (well a bit more than that) is kinda like getting a high-five as opposed to throwing a party!

The excitement with an Amazon launch just wasn’t as grand as having launched a Kickstarter for Love Lottery.

Both books were equal in terms of the love and the intention of bringing both books to life but the feel of the launches was very different.

Con #3 – You can’t do a Kickstarter once you publish… or could I still possibly run a Kickstarter for The Giving World hardcover edition?

(Lisa’s answer: Yes, you can run a Kickstarter campaign for a hardcover edition or limited-edition print run.)

Con #4 – You wonder what your Kickstarter launch would have raised…

Ha… one more …

Con #5 – You have no idea who bought your book on Amazon so you are unable to follow up with your customers when you launch books in the future.

Would you say that your pre-launch time and effort for a traditional book launch was more, less, or about the same amount as your Kickstarter launch?

Not at all close.

Where you put effort, you usually see a reward.

Let’s just say I put a lot, lot, lot of effort into the launch of Love Lottery – and still a good amount of time for The Giving World.

What would you change about your traditional book launch (if anything) to have more of a Kickstarter-like effect?

I wish I would have done a launch date or even promoted a date for a “Now Available on Amazon” launch.

I could have then built up some excitement with a countdown.

Do you prefer the Kickstarter model or the traditional book launch model? Does it depend on the title you’re releasing?

I’m sure it would depend on the title and the purpose of the book, but hands down the best way to introduce something into the world is with the support of other creatives, not just your book in the sea of Amazon listings.

I would 100% recommend running a Kickstarter – especially if this is your first book. But in the same breath, a traditional launch has its place too.

Would you do a traditional book launch again or do you prefer Kickstarter?

I think it would depend on the situation. Kickstarter is my preferred method of introducing my passion project into the world.

But timing and urgency – and just time, in general, lead us to launch our newest release on Amazon.

Anything else you want to mention?

I have had mixed feedback on the cover of The Giving World.

With Love Lottery, I loved the interaction on Kickstarter and allowing backers who supported you to vote and have feedback on things that were still in progress.

It would have been wonderful to have people give their insights and let them give us feedback on the cover options.

Bio

Leigha Huggins The Giving World

With love, purpose, and warmth, Leigha Huggins invites you into her world with her heartfelt stories. Leigha believes intention and words are the guiding force in life. Visit her website to learn more about The Giving World.

Website: www.thegivingworld.org

 

 

More Books by Leigha Huggins

Related

I too, had some regrets about launching my book directly to Amazon. Watch the video below for more:

Want to work together? 

If you’re serious about launching your book on Kickstarter, then I’m here to help you figure it out without needing to recreate the wheel.

I offer free tips here and on my YouTube channel as well as a personalized comprehensive 1:1 crowdfunding coaching program that keeps you on track and organized.

Click on the link below to book a 60-min discovery call and fill in the questionnaire to see if we are a good fit to work together.

Fully Funded in 24 hours: Love Lottery Success on Kickstarter

love lottery cover photo

Leigha Huggins has worked on her Kickstarter campaign since mid-2019, when she first started to conduct the market research and campaign preparations.

She knew her book about the love and joy children bring into our lives was an important message to share, but she was unsure about how to approach her Kickstarter campaign.

After some help and encouragement, Leigha made the leap and launched her campaign in May only to find herself rocketing to success.

Fully funded in 24 hours, and currently exceeding $10k with a $4k goal, Leigha has discovered the power of sharing a positive message that resonates with readers. 

Below are Leigha’s tips on what made her campaign a huge success.

Tip #1: Let people know how to help and what it means to you

I feel like lots of people like to help as long as they know how.

I have tried my best to reach out to my top people and ask them directly to please help me.

I let my early supporters know that I was going live and how important it was for the success of the campaign, and my ultimate goal was to get Kickstarter Project We Love badge.

Here’s the message I sent out to my friends and fmaily:

I’m so excited!!! Love Lottery is now available to order. We would love your support if you are able, and if you would share to help us spread the message of this beautiful book, we would be so grateful! https://bit.ly/lovelotterybook

I sent out this message to every person in my Facebook friends and on my phone (still not done…) And no group texts!!!

People discard group text (and sometimes personal ones too… but I felt like this was the step I wanted to go).

I let everyone know how thankful I was for their support.

I made no mention of stretch goals until I was almost to my first one…

Not even to people who were going to be my early supporters.

I revealed the stretch goals as each one came into view and we zoomed through so many that I had to create additional stretch goals! Not a bad problem to have.

Tip #2: Reach out to everyone you know

Mostly I believe in my book, the purpose, the message, the love it shares.

I have no issue about sharing it… with everyone.

My hairdresser, acupuncturist, (from years ago), my realtor, past neighbors, co-workers…

Pretty much if you have ever been in my life, I’m reaching out to you… ha!

love lottery our story

Tip #3: Don’t be in a rush to build your audience

I’m okay with hearing no, and I have been building my audience for a long time…

This whole book process I’ve referred to as the gift of delay.

Every time I would get a setback (and there were lots, I used it to get better, find resources, learn, let people know what I was working on). 

I just went with the flow, I didn’t want to rush it!

Building a book from the letters up is like building a foundation for the success of your effort.

Tip #4: Perfection is overrated

I spent so much time flip flopping like a pancake worrying about if I was going to launch or not. 

I booked an hour session with Lisa and she gave me the encouragement I needed when I needed it the most.

I showed up first day, without everything figured out…and perfection is overrated anyway…that’s too much pressure.

Tip #5: Overcome discomfort with research and preparation

I had never even heard about crowdfunding until I came across Lisa’s website. 

Lisa gave me so many tools, resources, ideas and lastly motivation to push through my discomfort to crowdfund my book on Kickstarter.

To me, crowdfunding is like testing the water before you commit to a large print run.

It means launching in front of a group of people you know, and many you don’t.

I think anytime you have the opportunity to launch something new… having a crowd is the best platform to have.

It gives you extra motivation and drive to have your best foot forward as you introduce your project to a beautiful crowd of people. (only safer because it’s online).

Lisa’s note: Leigha has been an ideal (!!) crowdfunding author in that she is not afraid to try new things and she really gives every effort 110% energy and enthusiasm.

The path to successfully crowdfunding your book is different for everyone and it’s important to try as many things as possible so you find what works for you.

I hope Leigha’s path to success is an inspiration for you all.

 

Resources Leigha used to help plan her campaign:

Crowdfunding Vault

1:1 Crowdfunding Consulting session

She is a member of the All-In Authors Community

Bio

Leigha Huggins
Photo credit: Leigha Huggins

Leigha Huggins is a mother and children’s book writer.

For Leigha, her hard times turned to gratitude when she looked at these precious gifts of young innocence and celebrated them—her Love Lotteries.

​She is confident you will feel her loving intention and connect to this story, as it is now a piece of all of us to share.

Please visit Leigha’s Kickstarter page now and show your support before her campaign ends on June 11, 2020.

Is crowdfunding the right strategy for you to launch your book?

More resources available on YouTube:

 

Top 10 List of Books on Crowdfunding Platforms—August 17, 2019

Top 10 Books on Kickstarter and IndieGoGo aug 172019

In an effort to connect more book lovers with authors on crowdfunding platforms, here is my list of Top 10 campaigns for this week (in no particular order).

The list is sorted by intended audience age so you can more easily find books you are interested in.

Be sure to visit them TODAY as these campaigns are time-sensitive and your timely support is critical to launch these books.

Click on the images below to find out more about each project.

#supportindieauthors #crowdfundyourbook #readmorebooks

FOR KIDDOS

#1 Brina

#2 Darcy Daydream

#3 These Words Are For You

When the words “I love you” are not enough, when you hold someone near and dear to your heart, when you want to capture love, purity, and goodness but don’t know how - These Words Are for You.

#4 The Girl and the Cathedral

#5 Journey to the End of the Night

FOR ADULTS

#6 Nobody Tells You...

#7 Venus on Mars: Art Nudes in the Desert

#8 You Died: An Anthology of the Afterlife

#9 Women Do No Creep By Daylight

#10 Young Explorer's Adventure Guide, Vol 6!

There are so many awesome, innovative, and exciting books available only on Kickstarter and IndieGoGo that will help improve the diversity we see in literature.

Supporting authors on Kickstarter and IndieGoGo helps these books come to life in ways they can’t via traditional publishing.

Every week, I’ll post my Top 10 List of interesting and unique books that are on Kickstarter and IndieGoGo. The list is curated and covers a variety of genres.

You cannot buy your way onto this list—these are books that I’ve found organically while searching the platforms.

Top 10 List of Books on Crowdfunding Platforms—July 19, 2019

Top 10 Books on Kickstarter and IndieGoGo July 19 Lisaferland.com

In an effort to connect more book lovers with authors on crowdfunding platforms, here is my list of Top 10 campaigns for this week (in no particular order).

The list is sorted by intended audience age so you can more easily find books you are interested in.

Be sure to visit them TODAY as these campaigns are time-sensitive and your timely support is critical to launch these books.

Click on the images below to find out more about each project.

#supportindieauthors #crowdfundyourbook #readmorebooks

FOR KIDDOS

#1 Pragmatic Princess: 26 Superb Stories of Self-Sufficiency

#2 The Future is Make Believe

#3 Black Boy, Black Boy

#4 The Could Shelf

#5 NIKI's Adventure

FOR ADULTS

#6 Time Traveling Octopus Makes History with Kickstarter

#7 Bad Words

#8 The Cancer Hive: A magazine for anyone affected by cancer

#9 Extra Teeth: words with bite

#10 Let Your Passion Pay the Bills

There are so many awesome, innovative, and exciting books available only on Kickstarter and IndieGoGo that will help improve the diversity we see in literature.

Supporting authors on Kickstarter and IndieGoGo helps these books come to life in ways they can’t via traditional publishing.

Every week, I’ll post my Top 10 List of interesting and unique books that are on Kickstarter and IndieGoGo. The list is curated and covers a variety of genres.

You cannot buy your way onto this list—these are books that I’ve found organically while searching the platforms.

Top 10 List of Books on Crowdfunding Platforms—June 28, 2019

In an effort to connect more book lovers with authors on crowdfunding platforms, here is my list of Top 10 campaigns for this week (in no particular order).

The list is sorted by intended audience age so you can more easily find books you are interested in.

Be sure to visit them TODAY as these campaigns are time-sensitive and your timely support is critical to launch these books.

Click on the images below to find out more about each project.

#supportindieauthors #crowdfundyourbook #readmorebooks

FOR KIDDOS

#1 The Ingredients for a Witch

#2 The A-Z of Uncommon and Endangered Animals

#3 Drip, Drop, and Drizzle

#4 Princess Pirates

#5 M is for Malware

FOR ADULTS

#6 People of Pride

#7 New York Drawings

#8 Hollow D.E.E.P

#9 Threads: Haunted

#10 Shots Fired

There are so many awesome, innovative, and exciting books available only on Kickstarter and IndieGoGo that will help improve the diversity we see in literature.

Supporting authors on Kickstarter and IndieGoGo helps these books come to life in ways they can’t via traditional publishing.

Every week, I’ll post my Top 10 List of interesting and unique books that are on Kickstarter and IndieGoGo. The list is curated and covers a variety of genres.

You cannot buy your way onto this list—these are books that I’ve found organically while searching the platforms.

Top 10 List of Books on Crowdfunding Platforms—June 14, 2019

In an effort to connect more book lovers with authors on crowdfunding platforms, here is my list of Top 10 campaigns for this week (in no particular order).

The list is sorted by intended audience age so you can more easily find books you are interested in.

Be sure to visit them TODAY as these campaigns are time-sensitive and your timely support is critical to launch these books.

Click on the images below to find out more about each project.

#supportindieauthors #crowdfundyourbook #readmorebooks

FOR KIDDOS

#1 From Neigh to Zebra

#2 Monster Mail

#3 Heroic Girls in Movies

#4 Why Aren't Dinosaurs Fuzzy?

#5 My Shining Star

FOR ADULTS

#6 Poetry of the Holocaust

#7 A Spaceship in Bronzeville

#8 A Cat's Guide to Money

#9 60 Lovers to Make and Do

#10 Eridani's Crown

There are so many awesome, innovative, and exciting books available only on Kickstarter and IndieGoGo that will help improve the diversity we see in literature.

Supporting authors on Kickstarter and IndieGoGo helps these books come to life in ways they can’t via traditional publishing.

Every week, I’ll post my Top 10 List of interesting and unique books that are on Kickstarter and IndieGoGo. The list is curated and covers a variety of genres.

You cannot buy your way onto this list—these are books that I’ve found organically while searching the platforms.

Top 10 List of Books on Crowdfunding Platforms—May 31, 2019

There are thousands of projects on Kickstarter and IndieGoGo and some are really innovative and creative books.

In an effort to connect more book lovers with authors on crowdfunding platforms, here is my list of Top 10 campaigns for this week (in no particular order).

I’m trying something new and am sorting the list by intended audience age so you can more easily find books you are interested in.

Be sure to visit them TODAY as these campaigns are time-sensitive and the opportunity might be gone if you wait too long.

Click on the images below to find out more about these fun books.

#supportindieauthors #crowdfundyourbook #readmorebooks

FOR KIDDOS

#1 Princess Lily and the Tricky Superpower

#2 How to Fly to the Moon in a Cardboard Box

Help Kardboard Kids bring imagination back to kids and nostalgia to their parents.

#3 ABC of Gender Identity

#4 Lily Huckleberry in Japan

FOR ADULTS

#5 Vagina Matters:

Join us in creating the first ever illustrated book on sexual health for girls in Bulgaria.

#6 Little Book of Fairy Tales

Publishing a fairy tale anthology book packed full of stories either from or about diverse groups.

#7 Pocket Guide to Celebrity Farts

#8 An Invite to Eternity

#9 The Last Kiss Goodbye

#10 Looking for Marla

There are so many awesome, innovative, and exciting books available only on Kickstarter and IndieGoGo that not only deserve extra eyes but will help improve the diversity we see in literature.

Supporting authors on Kickstarter and IndieGoGo helps these books come to life in ways they can’t via traditional publishing.

Every week, I’ll post my Top 10 List of interesting and unique books that are on Kickstarter and IndieGoGo. The list is curated and covers a variety of genres.

You cannot buy your way onto this list—these are books that I’ve found organically while searching the platforms.

Top 10 List of Books on Crowdfunding Platforms—May 24, 2019

top 10 books on kickstarter and indiegogo

There are thousands of projects on Kickstarter and IndieGoGo and some are really innovative and creative books.

In an effort to connect more book lovers with authors on crowdfunding platforms, here is my list of Top 10 campaigns for this week (in no particular order).

I’m trying something new and am sorting the list by intended audience age so you can more easily find books you are interested in.

Be sure to visit them TODAY as these campaigns are time-sensitive and the opportunity might be gone if you wait too long.

Click on the images below to find out more about these fun books.

#supportindieauthors #crowdfundyourbook #readmorebooks

FOR KIDDOS

#1 The Shapes that Tried to Escape

#2 Season's Race

Can anything be more important than getting in first place? Buckle up and be prepared for lots of adventure, fun, and some tough choices. Who are you going to root for: Summer, Autumn, Spring or Winter?

#3 Venus Underwater

FOR ADULTS

#4 My Kingdom for a Panel: A Shakespearean Anthology

#5 SMV: the magazine that's REAL

#6 Project-Based Learning

#7 Predators in Petticoats

#8 Fairytales for Grown-ups

#9 Recaptcha Magazine

#10 Dear Lois Issue #2

There are so many awesome, innovative, and exciting books available only on Kickstarter and IndieGoGo that not only deserve extra eyes but will help improve the diversity we see in literature.

Supporting authors on Kickstarter and IndieGoGo helps these books come to life in ways they can’t via traditional publishing.

Every week, I’ll post my Top 10 List of interesting and unique books that are on Kickstarter and IndieGoGo. The list is curated and covers a variety of genres.

You cannot buy your way onto this list—these are books that I’ve found organically while searching the platforms.

Why You Can’t Copy Someone Else’s Crowdfunding Strategy

It would be nice if we could just model our campaign after someone else’s successful campaign and see the same results but alas, that isn’t how it works.

Be sure to watch the video below for my reasons why you can’t just copy what someone else is doing.

If you try to copy someone else’s crowdfunding strategy without understanding all of the work that happened in the background and during the pre-launch phase, you’re setting yourself up for failure.

Take the time to study as many campaigns as you can, support campaigns in your subject area/genre so you see what types of email messaging authors are sending, and ask other creators about their experiences.

Types of questions to ask other crowdfunding authors

—What surprised you the most about crowdfunding your book?
—What was the biggest source of backers?

—What one piece of advice would you give someone thinking about crowdfunding their book?

Understand that a lot of different strategies can be successful but 70% of authors still fail at crowdfunding their books so you’re going to need to change strategies as soon as you see it’s not getting traction.

Enroll in my free mini-course to find out if crowdfunding your book is right for you.

Top 10 List of Books on Crowdfunding Platforms—April 26, 2019

In an effort to bring more book lovers and readers to platforms like Kickstarter and IndieGoGo on a regular basis, here is my list of Top 10 campaigns for this week (in no particular order).

Be sure to visit them TODAY as these campaigns are time-sensitive and the opportunity might be gone if you wait too long.

Click on the images below to check out these fun books.

#1 A book about global solutions you can do in your backyard

#2 Chapter One

#3 Don't Give In!

#4 Cafe Macabre

#5 A Bestiary of Fantasy Creatures

#6 Resilient ME Journal for Kids

#7 Sleeping Around America: Revisiting the Roadside Motel

#8 The Moon is Following Me

#9 Echoes of Silence

#10 Femme Type Book—Women in the Type Industry

There are so many awesome, innovative, and exciting books available only on Kickstarter and IndieGoGo that not only deserve extra eyes but will help improve the diversity we see in literature.

Supporting authors on Kickstarter and IndieGoGo helps these books come to life in ways they can’t via traditional publishing.

Every week, I’ll post my Top 10 List of interesting and unique books that are on Kickstarter and IndieGoGo. The list is curated and covers a variety of genres.

You cannot buy your way onto this list—these are books that I’ve found organically while searching the platforms.