The elective artifact I choose to use was the final presentation that my team produced about our final project. To access the powerpoint click “Elective Artifact” link above. This powerpoint covers the entire process of launching our Kickstarter, Life Cards an extreme truth or dare card game. We split the powerpoint up so we could each present what we had worked on. In this project, my personal contribution was Instagram marketing, the creation of Mockups to put on the Kickstarter, video editing, and some Facebook marketing. There are screenshots of our Trello board, which was the collaborative board we used throughout the entire class, there are screenshots of the Instagram I created, the mockups I created via Photoshop, and the social media marketing sites that my peers created and used to help build awareness of our product. The Powerpoint we created holds links to the pages we created, the videos we made, and the work we did. It also has a team reflection of what we thought we did well and how we could have improved.
In this course, the problem we were all trying to address is how to build an audience for an idea. The fundamental idea of the course was that there are many good ideas that don’t become successful because no one knows about them. Most of the ideas created were fun games or ideas that could be successful if we could get enough people to support them. Everyone in our class was savvy with social media and had access to audiences that we could reach via our Facebooks, our Instagrams, our Pinterest, and our Twitters. We used our knowledge of video making and iMovie to promote our idea which was Life Cards: An Extreme Truth or Dare Game on Youtube and Instagram. We were able to see how successful we were at growing an audience and getting people to buy into our idea by how much money we raised for our Kickstarter. We were also able to analyze how many people visited our page and when they visited. We were then able to develop a marketing strategy based on our observations.
I learned many technical skills from this class. An important one was learning how to effectively make a pitch. We covered the proper way to stand, the proper way to make eye contact, the proper way to speak and change the tones of our voice to draw people in, and we learned how to create an effective slide deck to accompany a pitch. We strived for a deck that was simple, attractive, and included minimal words. We also learned how important it is to practice to perfect a pitch and feel confident when pitching in front of people.
Another great takeaway from this course was learning about how customer acquisition funnels work. The goal of any successful product is for customers to be your advocates, which leads to free word of mouth marketing. That will only happen if you treat a customer right, and provide them with a product that they believe in and want to support. We learned about landing pages and how to use analytics to guide marketing because it can tell you when people visit your page, what makes them visit your page, where they come from, as well as a plethora of other data that can help you market efficiently and effectively as possible. We also covered how to use social media to market, which is what we directed our focus on and applied these tactics directly to our Kickstarter campaign.
Much of this class involved collaboration, communication, delegation, and teamwork. The idea we were working on was my classmate Peter Shi’s idea. We used a collaborative Trello board to post ideas and communicate as a team, we used Google Powerpoint, and Google docs to collaborate on ideas and our presentations, and it was up to everyone to be accountable and complete their assigned weekly tasks. Some tasks I had to complete were making and editing the videos, photoshopping mock-ups, and posting on FB or Instagram at key times so people would click on our Kickstarter link. Everyone in our group did what was asked of them too.
At the end of the course, our team ended up raising $721.00 and with 21 backers of our game. We did not meet our set goal, but we definitely learned a lot. We learned how much effort and thought goes into creating marketing strategies, building brand awareness, defining a target customer, and researching who to reach out to and what mediums to reach out on in order to build a group of supporters. We had to condense our work into 15 weeks and I can just imagine what we could have done if this was our only class and everyone was fully invested and committed to the idea.
We learned the value of creating a timeline and sticking to it. An entrepreneur must be self-motivated and set goals, make a plan, and do what it takes to accomplish them. My biggest takeaway from the course was that coming up with products and ideas is fun, but the most successful products/ventures are solving a big problem or creating a certain lifestyle or culture that people believe in and want to buy into and support. Apple is successful for this reason. There are other phones that are just as capable and maybe even more advanced than the iPhone. They don’t break as easily and even have better battery lives. So why do people buy into the iPhone? It is because Apple has created a chic, modern, futuristic, trendy lifestyle that people believe in and want to support. They have a created a product that may not even be the best one out there, but people buy into it because it represents who they are or the person they want to be. That knowledge is essential when launching any future venture: if you can get an audience to buy into your lifestyle or idea or passion then they will buy your product.