Posts tagged kickstarter
How I made the Berlin guide before showing up at my client’s office every day at 10am.
Benedict

The other day I got up at 4am. I needed to wait for my flatmate to finish his morning routine. He usually gets up so early, which sometimes wakes me up too. Whenever I fall asleep early the night before, it’s almost impossible for me to get back to sleep. (Now you know how I sometimes manage to work on so many projects simultaneously.)

I sat up in my bed and logged into the Google Doc with all the text I wrote for the Berlin guide. I noticed Diana started editing them. Within a couple of minutes, I implemented all the texts into the Kickstarter page before taking Orion out, then cooking her breakfast rice. She was pleased. She’d finally get breakfast earlier than usual. Eating is her favorite pass time. Once we were both ready, I jumped on the subway and went all across town to Wilmersdorf. I’m glad dogs can't talk back and are just happy to follow along. 

At this point, I still needed to take ten pictures for the Berlin guide and do so within a week if I wanted to meet the deadline I set for myself for the Vienna guide. (At the time, I had no idea I’d print a guide about Berlin too.) 

Of the ten places I had on my list to photograph, Benedict is the only one that opens before 8:30am. 

One thing is sure: Berlin’s not for early birds. 

The reason I decided to create a second Kickstarter project so quickly after publishing the one about Vienna is because I didn’t want to compromise on the quality of the paper I printed these guides on. It’s common for printing to become cheaper the more one prints, so instead of printing more of the Vienna guides, I simply decided to create another limited edition and print a guide about Berlin’s cafés. 

Those who follow me on Instagram know I’ve probably spent more time in Berlin’s cafés than Vienna’s coffee houses in the past couple of years anyway. 

I’ve already commissioned MOO to print both guides. That also means I’ll be shipping both sets simultaneously. This second project is for me to refinance the printing I’ve already paid for. 

Thank you so much for supporting this project. I really appreciate it.

The story of how and why I made two city guides within the past few weeks.
KockstarterBerlin

A few months ago, an email request trickled in asking me if I’d be interested in teaching a class on social media with the aim of showing young creative students how to best utilize the platforms to get a job. They all share the same problem in that no one wants to give them work unless they have experience (I’ll never get over this). My ambition to this class is to help students simulate they have the experience. Technically, having a company attached to a work experience is nothing more than proof that you have done a certain something. Publishing your work on social media is like getting social proof for having actually really done something. (Is this something I should write more about?)

Many of the projects I’ve been trusted with have come my way because of some other something I shared online. Now, it would have felt weird to me to come into a classroom and talk about publishing a book. I needed a much smaller project that would be technically and logistically easy to pull off. Even for students. That’s how the Vienna guide came to live.

Then I realized, if I actually wanted to do something like this, the paper had to be absolutely exceptionally beautiful. I needed to increase the print run, so I decided to publish a second guide; one to highlight Berlin’s best cafés. That one is now live on Kickstarter:

http://kck.st/2D8p93a

I’d really appreciate if you’d take a look. Possibly even share the news with others.

Thanks a million!

#Make100: A Pocket-Sized Guide to Viennese Coffee Houses

I’m excited to tell you about my latest side project. A couple of years ago, a dear friend gave me a card game, a quartet, featuring Viennese coffee houses. Since then, I’d pull out the deck from time to time and count how many places I’ve already been to. Sometimes I’d take a few cards with me and carry them in my purse and then put them back in the deck after I’ve visited them. I used them as a visual reminder to explore more.

Then, some weeks ago I posted a photo to Instagram of an incredible café I just discovered that wasn’t a part of the card deck, and I joked how I too should probably create a guide of places in Vienna where you should have a coffee one day. I thought it would be a fun idea to share my dearest café tips with you. To tell you where you have the best view of the city, where you should go in just to wash your hands in the bathroom because the tap is so memorable...where you should order a breakfast for one, or where it’s easy to talk to strangers.

In the past few years, I’ve been taking pictures and sharing them on Instagram. And now, I’m bringing 50 of these photos out as print with little, short, personal notes why this or that place is one you should discover for yourself. I’m printing them on business card sized cards so that it’s easy to stuff the whole deck or just a few cards in your pocket.

Whether you’re new to the city, planning to visit Vienna in the future, or already live here and want a fun, pocket-sized reminder that you can carry around with you to help you explore new places, this deck of cards is for you. As a try-out to see if you enjoy this format as much as I do, I’m doing a print run of 100 sets only. Now that I have launched this project, you have less than 14 days to snatch one of these sets for yourself. Please tell your friends who’d be interested! Thank you!

 

 

It’s a wrap! August
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Sometimes you win, sometimes you learn. August’s definitely been a month that pushed me out of my comfort zone multiple times. Having lived in five (you could even say six) countries, I’d say I’m highly aware of the needs and concerns of people with foreign nationalities. Thus, it’s rather surprising my latest project challenged me on multiple levels and did so due to cultural differences.

There are differences in how people from different countries communicate and how much they communicate. There are also differences in how other cultures approach work in general. The project I took on over the summer was with a team from Reykjavik. I now know what we consider the Wiener Gemütlichkeit (Viennese unhurriedness) might feel rather dramatic to Icelanders. One Icelandic sentence I learned but also heard way too often this past month was: “Þetta reddast!” It stands for, “It will work out okay.”

After working on Kickstarter’s side for two years, it was rather interesting to join a team as a direct consultant for a change. It’s not something I had intended to do after leaving Kickstarter, but the request came from within my personal network and I didn’t have anything else to do, so I thought why not.

Of course, once you’ve consulted hundreds of projects, you have a pretty good idea of what works, what doesn’t, what the common hurdles are, and why so many projects don’t meet the finish line. To spare you the details, we had all the red flags I could’ve thought of before going live, and also during the campaign. Retrospectively, it’s of little surprise I plucked several white hairs this past month.

Without going into much detail, but to give you one insight that was crucial to how this whole project felt to me, we didn’t have a working prototype until three days before the launch. A not-so small detail that I wasn’t made aware of when signing a collaboration contract.

It’s highly unlikely you can build a brand, a fan base, a loyal following, and eventually convert them into paying customers without a functioning product. To sum things up, there’s a difference between “everyone loving a concept,” an idea you share and having people hold your product, to them then immediately fetching their credit cards from their wallets because they’re actually willing to pay for it. I’d recommend everyone to check that and make sure you have chatted with enough people before trying to convince them to pay you.  

I’ve most certainly learned what sort of scenarios one should include in a contract. It’s crucial to include all potentials that could go wrong. As a freelancer, it’s much harder to put away financial and emotional hurdles. One doesn’t have anyone on the team to balance out instabilities, so one should make sure to minimize all potential risks. It’s also important to have a system in place to cheer oneself up. Luckily, I had a ticket to reasons.to, an incredible conference in Brighton, that helped me recharge my batteries and write these line with a cool head. Out of a Viennese Café feeling all the Gemütlichkeit vibes.

To end on a positive note: I’m very proud SOS Kinderdorf and I made progress with the initiatives we’re working on, and that Matt Trinetti mentioned me in his newsletter (subscribe! It’s one of my favorites).

I’m still free for projects if you need help with something.

Now, onwards and upwards!

It's a wrap! July
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anitar
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If someone would have told me three years ago I’d one day go on a business trip to Iceland, I’d have thought they were joking. But now, almost three years after going freelance, what I thought would be impossible became a reality. This past month, I started working with Anitar, Inc., an Icelandic startup that focuses on revolutionizing horse tech, to help them launch a Kickstarter project

Now, and given I said I’d prefer to take a break from working on Kickstarter projects to focus on marketing hotels and restaurants, this project was truly quite unexpected. Honestly, Karl Már, the founder of Anitar, pretty much bribed me with the idea of working with horses for two months. 

The beginning of the month was busy through and through, and although I finally managed to publish Work Trips and Road Trips, a book about working mindfully and also taking breaks as a freelancer, I must confess that I worked 24/7 and on several weekends to make everything happen that piled up on my to-do list. But sometimes, and even when you’re trying to avoid such moments, they still might sneak in. 

As you can image, the proudest moment of the month is that Work Trips and Road Trips is finally out and available on Amazon! Jamie Milnes and I have also finished the copy for the website of his agency, Double Underscore, and I also handed off the copy for the Go Global Outsourcing, Llc. website for Jamie to continue working on the design with the lovely Go Global team. Also, one of my articles on how to take a vacation as a freelancer was published on the Freelancer Union. A milestone! I’ve also been working on the Skillshare class about how to structure a website if you’re a freelancer. I started working on this class to help myself structure my own websites, however, I still haven’t managed to come very far with them. Planned release, nevertheless, is in September. Wish me luck! 

At the beginning of September, I’ll be at Reasons.to in Brighton, then a wedding in Italy, and after that, I’d like to start working with companies from the hospitality industry. If you know of someone who knows of someone in that sector and you know they need help with marketing, please connect me! Thank you! 

It's a wrap! May
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May felt like a transition month. Having finalized my involvement with Kickstarter after two years and coming back from an extensive vacation, May was the month I needed to decide what to do next.

Given I studied interior architecture but spent most of the past couple of years working in the digital communication field, I’ve decided it’s time to combine these two and rebrand accordingly.

My plan is to focus on clients from the hospitality industry and work with hotels, cafés, restaurants, and other physical spaces to help them shape their customer experience. I want to help these clients understand how to best use social media, which means I’m planning to get involved with the interior design, help them plan exciting events and retreats, and shape the overall customer experience in order to build a loyal community and customer base.  

Simultaneously, and in celebration of having a third book, Work Trips and Road Trips, coming out soon, I’m working on a community platform, which you’ll soon find under http://wearesmartcreatives.com.

My own website, this website, will become a personal landing page.  

I’m currently rebuilding my entire web presence and – you guessed it – building three new websites simultaneously. If you know of someone from the hospitality field who might need help with their communication, or if you know someone’s planning to open a café, a restaurant, or a hotel soon and wants to refresh their offering, please direct them to me.

I also started working with a global field sales team that works with clients in the hospitality field to help with their digital messaging. Additionally, given I also like to work with socially-minded projects, I’ve rewritten the German texts for Ruby Cup’s website, which is launching soon!

I'm booked throughout the summer but happy to take on new clients from September on! 

 

It’s a wrap! March

March marked my last month as Kickstarter’s Outreach Lead for Austria, Germany, and the Netherlands. I handed my position over to the wonderful Christoph Nagel, who now has the honor of missioning around Europe on behalf of one of my all time favorite companies!

While March was my last month and I still needed to wrap up the fashion sprint I was working on, I still managed to squeeze in some last minute talks, such as the one at the AMFI, Jovoto’s Event at Betahaus in Berlin, and I also organized another chapter of the series I started, Embrace Your Hustle, at the Factory in Berlin

Being a part of such an incredible project, such as the launch of Kickstarter in Europe, has been an incredible honor. I’ve mentioned some of the wonderful projects I was lucky to have helped succeed within the past two years in my other monthly reflection posts. And so, not to repeat myself, I’ll just say one thing: the entire experience has been unreal and out of the ordinary!  

As you know with Kickstarter, it’s all or nothing, and I felt like I needed to take a break for a little, as I no longer felt I was the right person to do the job. Some things that would've given me energy became a little draining, so the most professional thing to do (from my perspective) was to prepare everyone for a personal exit. I’ve mentioned in December I’d be leaving, so that’s what happened. As of now, I feel like I need a couple of weeks off! I cannot wait! 

Given my plan for the past few months has been to go to Bali in April, I knew I needed to finish all the writing for Work Trips and Road Trips before the end of March. 

It’s only been a few days, but I’m happy to announce that I wrote the last period in the document on the 30th of March, at 8:30am, at St. Oberholz in Berlin. I had tears in my eyes. It just felt so good to be able to say I’m halfway finished! 

Another thing that happened I’m incredibly proud of is that I got portrayed in Mariam Al-Ayash’s Wiener Portraits. She asked me what I loved about Vienna, and it felt like it came at the right moment because one of the things I wanted to change about my lifestyle was how much I traveled in the past few years. Currently, I have a deep desire to spend some more time at home. However, and before I’ll do that, I’m heading to Bali for a month. <3 

#WTART Update 06: Join our Kickstarter Live stream about freelancing this coming Saturday!

Hello and thank you for being one of our backers! We really appreciate it! We are at 44% and only have ten days to go. It's hard to compete against Brexit and Trump. Please be so lovely and share a link to this project with the people you think might appreciate reading Work Trips and Road Trips. Every Euro counts! 

I wanted to announce something special that we’ll be doing pretty soon: A Kickstarter Live Stream!

You’ll be able to ask me and my editor, the wonderful Diana everything about freelancing and anything you want to know about making this book! We’ll share some insights from what we’ve learned from conducting all these wonderful interviews. You’ll have the opportunity to chat with us and ask everything you’re curious about, be it freelancing, working remotely, or about working with a location distributed team, as we’ve been over the past couple of years. Or maybe, who knows, you have some other questions you want answers for!

The live stream will happen on Saturday, the 25th of February, at 5 PM CET (which is 11AM New York time).

I’ve created a Facebook event for you to have a reminder! Even if you can’t attend, I’d really appreciate it if you could click “interested” as it helps us spread the word about this project!

https://www.facebook.com/events/259798761127542/

Talk to you soon! <3