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Kickstarter Lesson #217: There and Back Again

20 February 2017

A few days ago, I received notifications from Kickstarter that two of my starred projects were nearing the end of their campaigns. I had discovered these projects weeks ago, and even though I liked how they looked, I decided to click the “Remind Me” button instead of pledging. When I got the notifications from Kickstarter, […]

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The 80-Hour Workweek

16 February 2017

I’m slowly but surely learning how to say yes during my 80-hour workweek. For a long time, my default answer for anything not directly related to Stonemaier’s forward progress has been no. Will you have a 30-minute chat with me about Kickstarter? No. Will you attend this convention? No. Will you playtest my game? No. […]

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How to Design a Board Game

14 February 2017

This blog is about crowdfunding and entrepreneurship. But it’s hosted on my company website, which is mostly about the “games” portion of “Stonemaier Games.” I’ve designed many of our games. About once a week, someone sends me a game design question. For a while I’ve pointed them towards the “Develop Board Game Projects” page on […]

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Kickstarter Lesson #216: The Leeroy Jenkins Approach to Marketing

9 February 2017

One of my all-time favorite YouTube videos features a group of World of Warcraft avatars standing around outside a dungeon as they meticulously plan their strategy. Itching with impatience, one of the avatars breaks away from the group and runs into the dungeon, yelling, “Leeroy Jenkins!” After a few moments of dismay, the group follows […]

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The Disembodied Teacher: How to Lecture via Skype

6 February 2017

If you’ve run a successful crowdfunding campaign, there’s a pretty good chance that a teacher will ask you to speak for his/her class. There’s also a good chance that the class will be in a different city than you, so you’ll need to teach over Skype or Google Hangouts. At least, that’s a hunch based […]

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Kickstarter Lesson #215: Your Post-Campaign Survival Kit

3 February 2017

Throughout my first tabletop Kickstarter project–Viticulture, a 42-day campaign–I divided my time between my full-time job and Kickstarter. Despite the intensity of the schedule and the lack of sleep, I stayed healthy for the duration of the project. Then the project ended, and my body was like, “Congratulations! Here is your punishment for the last […]

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Business Has No Borders

30 January 2017

Yesterday I was struck by a pattern that emerged from the first few e-mails I wrote. Each of them was a response to the following person: a new retailer in Australia a co-worker in Denmark a blogger in Iran a factory in China a game designer in Brazil an ambassador in Canada Usually those locations wouldn’t […]

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Kickstarter Lesson #214: How I Pick My Partners

27 January 2017

Some of the most defining moments of Stonemaier Games’ history are when partnerships were born: Alan Stone saying he’d like to work on Viticulture with me; One Moment Games asking me if the Chinese-language rights to Viticulture were available; Jakub Rozalski agreeing to partner with me on Scythe. A partner is distinctly different than client/customer relationship. […]

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Kickstarter Lesson #213: The Halo Effect

23 January 2017

I recently learned the term “the halo effect,” and I think it has some interesting applications to crowdfunding and entrepreneurship. Specifically, I’m talking about the halo effect as it applies to branding: It’s when a positive experience or familiarity with one product/service makes you more likely to try a different product/service from the same company. […]

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Kickstarter Lesson #212: Calculating and Paying Value-Added Tax (VAT)

19 January 2017

Over 3 years ago, we introduced the idea (and the logo you see on many Kickstarter campaigns) of projects being “EU friendly.” I’m going to focus on the EU region today–specifically in terms of VAT–but you could feasibly replace the word “EU” with other regions and this information will still apply. Before I begin, I need […]

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