Crowdfunding For Startups Using Kickstarter For Product Launches- Adam Craft EP 59

Adam Craft: Understanding Crowdfunding Product Launching

What is the best way to launch your product- on Amazon or Kickstarter? Over the last recent years, these two platforms have become vital in launching products into the market. Crowdfunding (Kickstarter) is a great way to launch your product faster and gain customer feedback and loyalty.

In this episode of the Page One Podcast, Luke Peters speaks with Adam Craft on how he successfully launched a product on Kickstarter and the journey that was. Adam is the founder of Elevated Craft and his flagship product The Elevated Craft Cocktail Shaker, a design that raised over $472,000 on Kickstarter late last year. He continued taking presales and in just a few months his revenue exceeded $600k from almost 8,000 backers.

Listen in to learn about the process of crowdfunding before, during, and after a product launch. You will also learn the difference between an Amazon and a Kickstarter product launch.

Key Takeaways:

  • The importance of having backers who take their time to know the product as you take care of them.
  • The difference between doing an Amazon launch vs. crowdfunding.
  • The advantage of the one on one customer feedback and loyalty on Kickstarter than anywhere else with product launches.
  • The importance of having a cool product to attract backers on Kickstarter.

Episode Timeline:

  • [4:03] How being a student of crowdfunding, and doing a lot of research helped Adam raise money on Kickstarter.
  • [5:21] How he prepared for the funding by first investing in the product.
  • [7:03] He explains how he was able to run an aggressive campaign on Kickstarter and sell the product on different platforms.
  • [11:02] The duration of a Kickstarter campaign and all the work that goes into it- preparing, during, and after the campaign.
  • [13:39] The importance of the first three-day stage of the campaign and how to prepare for it.
  • [16:28] Factors that differentiate between Amazon and crowdfunding and why each has unique potential in the success of product launches.
  • [19:15] Adam explains the aspect of loyalty and true customer feedback witnessed on Kickstarter that is unavailable elsewhere.
  • [21:14] The lessons he has learned about supply, marketing before launching and planning for enough sample production.
  • [23:51] The most important things to get effective results from your Kickstarter campaign.
  • [26:54] He talks about the amateur mistake he made of putting all his trust in one factory and later they failed him and he ended up regretting.
  • [29:38] How he keeps a big list of product ideas to always have a pool to look at.  

Relevant Links:

Adam’s LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/adamcraft/

Announcer: Welcome to The Page One Podcast, a twice-weekly podcast featuring a variety of guests and thought leaders on topics ranging from channel strategies to tariffs, influencer marketing, best-in-class product launches, and all the details about how to accelerate your e-commerce sales with the big box retailers or what we call r-commerce. Now here’s your host, Luke Peters.

Luke Peters: Thanks for joining us on The Page One Podcast. I am your host, Luke Peters, and this is the podcast where I bring you the best and brightest leaders to share consumer products, sales, and marketing strategies that will help you grow your business. I’m the CEO and founder of NewAir Appliances, where I cut my teeth selling products online, and now I’ve started Retail Band where I hope to help other brands succeed in product launches, influencer marketing, and B2B online sales strategy.

Luke Peters: Right now I’m offering a free evaluation of your online sales strategy. If you’re interested, find me on LinkedIn or email me at luke@retailband.com. We can see if influencers are the right fit for your product and also take a look at your online sales strategy and also the accounts you’re selling into. How are you doing on home depot.com and wayfair.com and Amazon? Hopefully we can provide a lot of value. So look forward to connecting with you all there.

Luke Peters: In this episode you’re going to learn from Adam Craft, founder of Elevated Craft and his flagship product, the Elevated Craft Cocktail Shaker. This design raised over $472,000 on Kickstarter late last year. He continued taking presales and, in just a few months, his revenues exceeded 600K from almost 8000 backers. So this episode is going to be focused on crowdfunding. I think it’s the first time on The Page One Podcast that we’ve talked about this subject and I think there’s a ton of value here, especially because it’s a different channel.

Luke Peters: That’s why that’s why I’m interested in it. Amazon obviously is a massive channel. There’s a lot going on there, but this is a completely different channel and a chance for all of you brands to connect directly with a backer who is a customer. I’m definitely interested in learning more from you, Adam. Thanks for joining me on The Page One Podcast.

Adam Craft: Yeah. Thanks for having me.

Luke Peters: Cool. And then a quick bio for Adam, graduated with a bachelor of science in industrial design and then got a second degree in management from Arizona State University. Spent about five years in the corporate world, then decided to start a boutique design engineering firm. Over the last six years, they have worked on anything from consumer electronics, medical devices, housewares, and toys. So taking it from there, Adam, why don’t you just briefly touch on size of the company, maybe total number of employees? Do you guys warehouse yourself or do you 3PL? And just any other details that’ll give the listener a little bit more of an idea of your business.

Adam Craft: Yeah, definitely. So you touched on that I have the design engineering consultancy. That’s a separate company. It’s boutique. There’s three of us in that, but we take on all kinds of crazy projects on that end. And then Elevated Craft is my own brand and that’s really me and a couple contractors. It’s an interesting time to be talking because it’s really just getting off the ground with the latest crowdfunding project that we did. That’s kind of where it started.

Luke Peters: How many times have you done actually a crowdfunding project? I guess what I’m getting at is this one was so successful. You’re selling a craft cocktail shaker. I think the price is around $40, right? $40 or $50?

Adam Craft: Yeah, that’s correct.

Luke Peters: Okay. So that’s a lot of backers to get to almost 500,000 in sales. Is this something that you had done a few times previously to build up this skill and a following? How did you kind of get to this point?

Adam Craft: I guess the best way to describe that I’ve been a student of crowdfunding since it started, or let’s just say a fan. So Kickstarter came onboard around 2009. I’ve tracked a lot of projects, but I’ve never actually launched myself. I’ve watched a few of our customers in the consultancy do their own objects, but nothing to any major scale. I was really just approaching it like a design problem. So looking at it and doing all the research needed and learning as much as I could before launching it, and then really understanding if the product design that I came up with was crowd-fundable, because not everything is. It was kind of more about being a student of crowdfunding than really having a bunch of experience doing multiple projects or anything like that.

Luke Peters: That’s a really great success then. So you’re basically saying you kind of hit a home run on this first one. What I wanted to get into is, okay, you have the success on crowdfunding. You raise all this money. And then how does it work? Do you then produce the product afterwards so you don’t have to have inventory going into it? And then once that happens, you fulfill these orders, but then do you take that success and then start selling it on Amazon and other channels? Talk to me about where it goes from this point on.

Adam Craft: Yeah. So the requirement on Kickstarter is that you have a working prototype prior to going into it. And then I think based on the way the Kickstarter community works, if you’re doing a physical product, then they really want to see that you have taking it that 90% stage where they know that they’re going to actually get the product. I should say, I think crowdfunding’s evolved a lot in the past 10 years. I think the days of somebody doing a potato salad Kickstarter campaign that raised $80,000 and that sort of thing, I think those are long. It’s really a a business at this point. So in my case, I had already invested my own money in the molds and tooling that went into making the shaker and done about four rounds of samples. So I’m really confident that I could take it over the finish line.

Adam Craft: What I didn’t want to do though is place a big inventory run and have a bunch of inventory sitting around or try to get it right on Amazon and hope it’s going to sell. So that’s where the crowdfunding came into play for me. I think that’s pretty much the way it goes nowadays. If you’re doing a consumer electronic or something, you really want to have it almost done and you’re going to invest quite a bit on the front end before you get the launch. Did that answer the question?

Luke Peters: Yeah, no. That’s perfect. And then now you have these sales, so now it sounds like, okay, then you run your production. But then what do you do? Now does it become a product that then is just sold elsewhere on the Internet? I mean I’m assuming you don’t have round two and round three for the same product. It’s already created. Now you’re off and selling it maybe on Amazon or somewhere else?

Adam Craft: Yeah. So in my case, this is actually really fresh after the Kickstarter campaign. With Chinese New Year and everything in there, the product is not actually being manufactured just yet. So I’m doing a couple more rounds of samples. The cool thing about Kickstarter is that what people, and crowdfunding in general, I think what the backers are doing is they’re investing in the experience and the story. They want the product, obviously. That’s where they’re putting their money, but they’re willing to wait six months to get it. The reason is because they get backer updates. They get communication with the creators. It really gives them a channel to watch something grow. So it’s less about trying to expedite it to market.

Adam Craft: I actually have talked to some major marketing companies that are behind some of these campaigns and they say there’s not seasonality on Kickstarter. So getting it and launching right at Christmas or something like that, the Kickstarter backer community are really their own subset of consumers. So where I go next is I’m actually still taking preorders through Indiegogo InDemand. That’s a normal process is that you essentially launch on Kickstarter because they have the bigger base of users. But Indiegogo did this really brilliant thing where they have a thing called InDemand. If you have success on another crowdfunding platform, you can go and continue taking preorders on Indiegogo InDemand until you’re ready to ship your product.

Adam Craft: So that’s where I’ve basically been able to run a really aggressive campaign on Kickstarter and then continue taking preorders to the tune of now I’m up to around 620,000 in presales. As soon as I get through a couple more rounds of samples, I’ll place my production order. That’ll really inform how much I should order on that first run. With the Indiegogo InDemand, you kind of get a sense for what the sales volume might be through one channel, similar to a Shopify or something like that. So that helps project out some of the numbers and say, “Am I going to sell 1000 a month or 5000 a month?”

Adam Craft: So as far as the channel strategy post-Kickstarter or post-crowdfunding, I’m not totally sure if I’ll go straight to Amazon. I for sure want to do a Shopify site and launch the product on there and try to have some additional offerings for people. But when you do a crowdfunding campaign, the real thing is taking care of the backers and making sure they’re all happy and worrying about the rest later. So while I have a strategy, I don’t have an exact thing where I say, “Okay, I’m going to send 5000 units to Amazon and try to get on Wayfair or any of that other stuff.” Right now, backer-focused because there’s 8069 backers or something like that as of this morning that all need taking care of. That’s a big responsibility.

Luke Peters: Wow. That’s awesome. Now, let’s back up because hopefully, for the audience, I think you’re doing great so far because I really understand how this works. So for the audience, we’re all launching products. All of us brands are doing it, and especially with tariffs because prices go up. We’re like, “Man, now we’ve got to relaunch a bunch of products.” I talk to brands, everybody from consumer electronic brands or kitchen electrics or nonelectrical products. It could be tabletop stuff and all the way through, top of bed.

Luke Peters: There’s so many different categories and all of them are doing product launches, but 99% aren’t thinking in these terms. Now, let’s back up. So you had a product idea and you designed the idea. I know there’s thought and planning in that, so we’ll forget about that time involved because it could go back many years or just a month. But from that point you decide to do a crowdfunding. Like you said, you started on Kickstarter. How long ago was that? Just to give us a time period for how long could the typical campaign take and time investment involved?

Adam Craft: The campaign runs, at Kickstarter you can do, I think, 30 to 60 days. I ran a 30-day campaign starting at the end of October and running through November. But the preparation in that takes, I mean you can spend a year on it. You’re building out really high-end marketing assets and there’s a lot of planning behind it. It’s going to be different for every campaign because this was one that I did myself. I hired people where I could and where I needed to, for example, filming the Kickstarter video that I had. I found an editor that was also able to be the director for the day and then we hired a camera guy and an audio guy.

Adam Craft: We filmed the video in one day, but I probably spent three months writing the script and coming up with the shot list and everything else. That’s bootstrapping it. That’s also it took me a lot longer because I think at the point that I came up with Elevated Craft and had a product design and started working with a factory, my wife and I also had twin babies.

Luke Peters: Wow. That’s a life changed.

Adam Craft: Yeah. That added another layer. They’re actually a year old right now. I’ve been working on this for over 18 months. I don’t know how much quicker it would have happened if I didn’t have the babies in that time. But yeah, it takes a long time. For sure. I mean, I think the real thing is on your question of product launches is how do you choose between doing an Amazon launch or launching at a trade show verse doing a crowdfunding campaign? I think there’s, like you said, everybody’s launching products but how to think about that?

Luke Peters: Actually maybe that’ll be next. But before I get there, this is really interesting. You’re coming up with these assets and videos and, look, all of us launching on Amazon, we’ve got to do the same thing. We should do the same, get really high-quality assets. We should all aspire to be there. So that part’s similar. But you’re working within the Kickstarter framework. How do you actually get backers and eyeballs? Are you having to pay to play? How are you getting attention of the folks in Kickstarter? Because it is quick, like you said, 30 days in your case. A lot of work ahead of it.

Luke Peters: The reason I ask that is obviously so we can understand how that works, but also just because a lot of other channels now are all pay to play in their closed. Facebook, if you’re a business and you post, nobody actually sees your post. You got to pay, so on and so forth. Same with Instagram and all the social channels and then even with Amazon now, a lot of companies, 50% of their sales are going to be paid. So curious how that works with Kickstarter.

Adam Craft: Yeah. That’s a good question. Kickstarter really drives almost zero traffic to your campaign, I think similar to Amazon or anything else. If you put it up, nobody’s going to see it. Some campaigns might get lucky and get picked up by a news outlet or something like that. But even those aren’t as high-value because back to the point that the backer community has really its own niche. So a normal consumer’s not going to go on a Kickstarter campaign and back something and wait six months for it. The pay to play is doing Facebook ads, doing Google ads and those things, but really focusing those around identifying people that have previously backed a campaign, have liked a Kickstarter page, and that sort of thing.

Adam Craft: There’s a lot of marketing companies that have popped up around that because they build Facebook audiences and identify those backers. That’s really what most people do. I think at this point what the normal process is, about 10 days before you launch the campaign, you do a lead-gen where you basically do Facebook ads, have people go to a landing page, and if they want to, they put their email address in. What that does is on day one, you want to get as many backers as possible. So the most important part of the campaign is really your first three days. If you launch a campaign and then you start thinking about, “Man, I need to run some ads,” the campaign’s probably already a dud. So it’s really a lot of preparation for those three days because that gives you the momentum so that whenever people land on a page and they go, “Man, they already hit their goal,” or, “Look, 1200 people have already backed this in the first three days.”

Adam Craft: There’s a lot of that kind of thing going on. And then mostly I think most campaigns are hiring specialized marketing companies that will typically do a commission based off of what you earn on the back end. I interviewed a lot of different marketing companies after we had the assets built because I wanted to show them what they might be marketing for me and make sure that it was a good fit. Some of them wanted a lot of upfront fees. But the ones that were the real pros in the space that knew that they could generate a lot of money through the ads, they would do a commission based on the ads you run.

Adam Craft: And then purely on the pay to play subject, you’re financing the ad. So that’s really as somebody considering running a crowdfunding campaign, it’s not like you can put it up there and hope that that it’s going to get traffic. You really have to look at it and say, “Okay, if I think this can generate $200,000 or a million dollars, I need to be prepared to spend 15 to 20% of that revenue on Facebook ads. So pay to play, for sure. You’re buying ads.

Luke Peters: For sure. Yeah. So you build that into your margins. I mean just like people have to do on Amazon. Speaking of Amazon, let’s get into that. What are the advantages of using crowdfunding over Amazon and vice versa, if you have experience there?

Adam Craft: Right. I’ll give a story about the shaker. Whenever I first started thinking of the cocktail shaker, it kind of stemmed from I came up with the name Elevated Craft as a brand, was able to trademark it, and that was sort of I thought it could be a pretty cool umbrella brand where I could maybe design some coffee stuff or just anything craft-related. Prior to doing that, I had actually designed a few vacuum-insulated water bottles for somebody that was an Amazon seller. So I kind of learned the engineering and all that stuff of the stainless steel products and made connections with factories and all that. I wanted to go ultra-niche because I thought if I launched on Amazon I could probably own that base and pay for the ads and everything and really kind of focus for my first product. So that’s where the cocktail shaker came into play.

Adam Craft: It wasn’t until I designed the shaker and found kind of the cool factor that made it where I thought in my head, “Okay, I can actually do a crowdfunding campaign.” Because if I just launched a cocktail shaker, there’s actually been a couple that have launched on Kickstarter. I looked at those and they raised like $30,000 or something. I knew that the effort going into doing a Kickstarter meant that I needed it to raise a lot, at least six figures, at least 100 grand for it to be worth launching on there. So the decision between Amazon or Kickstarter was really the product drove that.

Adam Craft: If I just had a really nice-looking shaker that didn’t have any kind of bells and whistles to it, it could do really, really well on Amazon with all the good tips and tricks that everybody does on Amazon and it would fall flat on Kickstarter. So I think that’s really it. There are certain products that are Kickstarter-able in my brain. It really comes down to that kind of cool factor and understanding the crowdfunding community and what they might get excited about.

Luke Peters: Yeah. That makes a lot of sense. But I’m wondering. I mean we don’t know, but what if this could have launched an Amazon and done over a million dollars and you’re like, “Wow. I could have had more sales going that direction because Amazon is so massive.” I guess, so the question I’m getting at here is, is there an advantage though to having these backers and launching on Kickstarter? Can you now take that? I know we talked about earlier where you’re still taking care of your backers, then you’ll figure out next steps.

Luke Peters: But I know larger brands will launch on Kickstarter. So I’m wondering from a PR standpoint, is there a nonmonetary benefit to having your product have a successful launch? If a brand is launching a product and it’s supposed to … It’s coming in on, say, July 1 or let’s just say it’s coming in for Christmas right now. It’s coming for Christmas 2020. Is there an advantage to launch on Kickstarter ahead of that because they’re going to get some sort of press that then they could use down the road out somewhere in the marketplace?

Adam Craft: Yeah. I really wish that Kickstarter still had the clout to get press in the way it used to. To give you an idea on my campaign, I had zero major publications pick up the story and I had a couple of small blogs. Really, of the amount that I raised, none of that had to do with any kind of PR. The reason being is that when talking to other backers and other bigger brands that have ran million-dollar campaigns or a couple of million-dollar campaigns, they say that while sometimes the press will pick it up, it’s often looked at as a risky subject. Or even the bigger ones, like a New York times, I think they just won’t write about it because it falls under the investment advice or something like that.

Adam Craft: The bigger brands, here’s what I’ll say on that is I don’t think the press is really the answer. It’s really the lifetime value of the backers. So if I would have done an Amazon launch that was even more stressful, I wouldn’t have any backer communication or any email addresses, things like that. What I do know about Kickstarter backers is that they tend to come back. If you do a good job and get them the product, they become the true fans. They become the people that I can go to as well and say, “Hey, I’m thinking about designing these two products. What do you guys think?” I don’t think you can get that on Amazon and maybe not anywhere else.

Luke Peters: That’s a great, great answer actually. So it’s that customer feedback, that customer connection, and then your loyal tribe of fans that you can get. You have to do a good job to get those. Like you said, you have over 8000 of them now. But yeah. So other than that, I mean it is dollars and cents in the sense that there isn’t as much … Because I wasn’t so sure about it. That’s why I’m really glad that we’re having this conversation. I just don’t know about it and maybe some of the audience doesn’t either. There’s so much for us to learn here. If you could do it again, what is something you might do differently? Maybe is there something you’ve learned after going through this process?

Adam Craft: Good question. Well, I think I had plans that didn’t quite work out and maybe I would hope that those would. As an example, I had hoped to have somewhere around 100 cocktail shaker samples that I could then send out to YouTube influencers and just try to get in the hands of people to help do some of the marketing and that didn’t come through. So I ended up using one factory to make the initial molds and stuff and give me the first round of samples. Then I lost faith with them and ended up going with another factory for my production. So I had to pull the trigger with having, let’s say, half a dozen samples that really they proved out the design, but I wasn’t able to do the type of marketing blitz that I would have. I think that, in the end, the campaign could have potentially been bigger or it could have been the same size but maybe more profitable.

Adam Craft: If I had somebody that it has 100,000 or a million YouTube followers or whatever and they were able to make an unboxing video, that would be really awesome. So I think if I could do it again, maybe just having the supply chain hammered out a little bit better, getting some more samples that I could send out. That would be potentially helpful, but it’s all a gamble. You don’t know if you send somebody the product if they’re going to do it in time or not. But I have seen that work for other campaigns where they send out product and even to the point where they’ll have the influencer sign an NDA and everybody puts the video out on the same day. They’ll pay those influencers and everything, but those have been some really, really big campaigns.

Luke Peters: Yeah, that’s a great insight. It’s funny because that’s exactly what we do at Retail Band is we work with YouTube influencers like that. I can tell you, it’s amazing I mean from an SEO perspective as well and from a branding perspective, but also just because YouTube is just one of the few channels that’s not behind a paywall as much as all the other social, like the Instagrams and everything else where your audience just isn’t seeing this stuff anymore unless you paying.

Luke Peters: What I really wanted to finish up the conversation on crowdsourcing is maybe your three biggest takeaways on how to get backer attention. I guess it started with building a list and Facebook ads. Anything else that you can add to that? So if someone’s doing this and they’ve never done it before and, okay, now they know they have to prep. They’ve got to create beautiful assets ahead of time. They got to plan ahead of time and they got to create the lead gen and the Facebook advertising planned ahead of time. What would you say are the three most important things to get that effective result?

Adam Craft: I guess the key takeaways that I had from it is if you think your product has the cool factor that a Kickstarter community is really hungry, then the steps that I took and I would do exactly the same way is find three to five recent campaigns that are relevant to your product and that are similar technology, similar audience. Make sure the campaigns are recent, like no more than two to three years old because, like I mentioned earlier, the crowdfunding platforms and communities have really evolved over the past few years. But those become the campaigns that you analyze like crazy and figure out how big are their teams? How many Kickstarter campaigns have they done? Add them on LinkedIn, all that sort of stuff because that’s going to inform how successful your campaign can be.

Adam Craft: I say that meaning I’m all about looking at data and taking conservative guesses on things. But there’s ways that you can look at these campaigns as well. There’s actually a website called Kicktraq, K-I-C-K-T-R-A-Q, dot com. I don’t know if you’ve seen this, but you can actually put in a Kickstarter campaign and it’ll show you how many backers they had every single day of the campaign, how much they raised, and all of that sort of stuff. That’s super helpful. What that’s really giving you is a realistic picture because the last thing I would tell somebody to do it is spend a bunch of money and time and everything and have a campaign that you look at and you think is going to raise a million dollars, but all the previous campaigns show that it’s probably more like a $50,000 campaign for whatever reason.

Adam Craft: Just because I think that the Kickstarter backers are kind of a specific crowd, so that’s just kind of validating how to plan for the size of a campaign and how much money to spend on it, and then go from there. I mean there’s so many tips and tricks that I have for this type of thing.

Luke Peters: Yeah, no. I guess really the key point that’s coming through is you got to have a cool product. As much as all of us brand owners love our products, we know which ones would fall into that category and wouldn’t. So that’s, I guess, the first speed bump to go over it is make sure you got the cool product. And then, like you said, study, break these things down and be a student of the recent campaigns that did well and understand their teams and how they did it. That along with the traffic up front, like you spoke about Kickstarter’s not driving traffic to your campaign.

Luke Peters: You’re going to have to use Facebook ads and some other source like that where you can really segment down to that audience. So I think pulling all those together, that definitely I know a lot more now than I did 30 minutes ago. It gives me good insights. What is something on your end, maybe it could be in this business or another, but maybe what’s been your mistake? I asked that, maybe your biggest mistake or biggest regret. This is always interesting to hear because it’s maybe something that you learned from or that the listeners can learn from. Tell us how that impacted you.

Adam Craft: I think as it relates to this product is I spent a lot of time with that first factory and really just building that relationship with them. I connected with the owner because he’s about my age and he had started the factory 10 years ago or whatever. They’re making stainless steel products, so it falls in the right category and everything. In my consulting side of the business, I go to China a couple times a year and so I had actually gone to the factory, visited with him, spend time with his wife, his sister. I’d seen him in trade shows and everything. Ultimately, I let the relationship maybe put blinders on the fact that they weren’t really set up to do a complicated product like mine. It might not seem that complicated, but really a factory like theirs, they could do vacuum-insulated tumblers all day long. But the way that my design is, it really stretched their resources and, ultimately, it was a mutual breakup.

Adam Craft: But in the way that a lot of factories do business, it came to towards the end and they just couldn’t get the samples as good as they needed. And then they tripled or quadrupled the price or something which was effectively saying, “Hey, we’re not going to do this.” So I just wasted a lot of time. I know that relationship building is important, but I could have been building relationships with four different factories at the same time, than focusing all my attention on one. I think that was just maybe an amateur move that I made and won’t do it again. At this point, with the future products, it’ll …

Adam Craft: It wasn’t that I didn’t get multiple quotes, it’s that I found somebody that I liked and I really put a lot of time into them and let their excuses kind of go on too long before cut him off.

Luke Peters: Have a diversified supply chain. I think that’s the learning from that one. But listen, relationships matter and we can all kind of get tricked into that. It’s tough, especially when you’re meeting people face-to-face and they’re telling you they can get it done. You have to take them for their word, especially when you’re talking directly to them and it’s not over the phone. But that is still a great story and I think a valuable reminder for all of us. I think we’re all doing that. And then we all want to push certain factories or make our business larger with them because then we’re more important. We get better pricing.

Luke Peters: But then we also have to remember that, hey, we want to be diversified and have a couple of other factories. So it’s a tough balancing act, but definitely a good lesson that it looks like you learned there. I’m sure it’ll help you in your next product launches.

Adam Craft: Yeah.

Luke Peters: Cool. I guess just before we wrap up something that’s always interesting to me with successful entrepreneurs like yourself is what is something, like maybe it’s a habit or a ritual or a practice that you’ve learned or done that’s made you a better person at work or at home?

Adam Craft: I guess maybe at work it would be, as it relates to Elevated Craft and this helps customers as well in that consulting side, but essentially keeping big lists of product ideas because you never know when you’re going to look at that list and the time might be right. If I have a, let’s say, a consumer electronics idea for something, I’ll write it down and throw in couple descriptions. But now wouldn’t be a good time for me to launch that from a risk factor, but that’s been a super helpful thing. I don’t know. I think it’s kind of taking time on it as well and being super analytical. My background’s not in finance or anything, but I do what I just call brute force logic.

Adam Craft: I’ll take spreadsheets and full them and analyze the numbers and see if it makes sense to spend money on advertising, all that sort of stuff. Maybe the takeaway on that is not being afraid to dive into something that it’s not my expertise. Everybody can do it if you kind of have the logic that you’re going off of and you can analyze stuff. That’s always been helpful, to not be afraid to dive into things that I haven’t had the training and the background on.

Luke Peters: Yeah. Well, you got to measure everything, so that’s smart. You’re launching this campaign and expenses can get out of whack, so you have to know where everything’s going, so definitely important for any successful entrepreneur. Listen, thanks Adam. It’s been really interesting learning about crowdfunding. Hopefully the audience can follow the journey from start to finish and understand the differences. I know you also do product design. Your second company is focused on that and so just wanted to give you an opportunity. Is there a way listeners can find you? Do they find you on LinkedIn or is there another better place for them to contact you?

Adam Craft: I think LinkedIn is good. Also direct contact, if they go to elevatedcraft.com that will forward over to whatever campaign is active at the time or the website. That’s something that I plan on continuing to be heavily involved in. So at this point, if somebody messages on there I’m getting it and I’m responding. So yeah. I think those are good places to go.

Luke Peters: Well, it’s been a pleasure having you on The Page One Podcast and I also want to thank all the listeners for listening to this episode of The Page One Podcast sponsored by Retail Band. Quick reminder that I’m offering a free evaluation of your online sales strategy. Take a look at your digital strategy on Amazon, Home Depot, Wayfair, and other online retail channels. We can take a look at your products and selling tools that you’re using and kind of compare it to our analytics, and I’ll present the findings directly to you.

Luke Peters: We can see if influencer marketing is a good play for you, especially how we do it on YouTube, which is really unique and gives you kind of an evergreen SEO feel to the brand and keywords that you’re targeting. So if you’re interested, find me on LinkedIn or email me at luke@retailband.com. Just want to thank everybody for listening. Really appreciate all of your comments, suggestions, and especially your reviews on iTunes. We’ll see you on the next episode.

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Episode References:

Contact Adam Craft: LinkedIn

Contact Luke: luke@retailband.comLinkedIn 

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