Road to Kickstarter #15: The Osborne Effect

Road to Kickstarter #15: The Osborne Effect

Road to Kickstarter #15: The Osborne Effect

Greetings Heroes,

Welcome back, courageous adventurers, to another captivating installment of our Road to Kickstarter series. Prepare to embark on an in depth behind the scenes peak into our Kickstarter marketing video progress with Nick. Meanwhile, Kyle & John continue to work an FAQs in an effort to avoid the osborne effect, Ryan shares a design update, and Renae continues ramping up on all things Hero Service. Read along for more! 

Nick, Product

I once heard someone say “think of a Kickstarter video as an infomercial for millennials.”

Anyone who knows anything about Kickstarter knows that the video on your campaign is everything. It is quite literally the most effective way to capture attention, showcase the product, and create a buzz about the campaign. And to tell you the honest truth, I think we at The Hero’s Journal haven’t embraced the art of the millennial infomercial as we should. But this time around, we are changing that. In the past, our Kickstarter videos have been lengthy, over-explained and really only appealing to Heroes who know who we are. As we embark on this new quest we are looking to cast a wider net to attract new heroes. Planners as a category are much larger and more widely used than the niche journal concept where we got our start. As we evolve the product line, we must also evolve how we market.

We hired Wes, an incredibly talented director (and one of my dearest friends) to help us create this video. I can confidently say I have never been more excited to see a final cut of a video. Wes wrote a script that really allowed Kyle and I to be goofy while also showcasing the Hero’s Planner. It’s a cross between Wes Anderson, Anchorman, Monty Python with a dash of animation. As silly as the video is, there is a strategy to engaging people through laughter. Laughter is emotion and if a Kickstarter video makes you feel something it’s much more likely you’ll back the project or at least share the campaign video. We hope you, your friends, and your friends' friends will share a laughter together and feel excited about backing and promoting the campaign.

While we don’t have the video to share with you just yet, we do have a small snippet just for you loyal Road to Kickstarter readers! Kyle and I both happened to have mustaches while we were writing the script, and we thought it would be a funny to shave our mustaches in the middle of the shoot. Let me know what you think of the aesthetic, tone and overall strategy of our Kickstarter video in the comments!

P.S. Big shoutout to Wes, Erik, Randy, Kati, Pete, and Archetype Studios!

Video Link:

Ryan, Art

My design assistant Emily pointed something out to me this week that somehow, through all the months of working on the Hero’s Planner, that we failed to notice. We only had 48 weeks in the planner! Each month has around 4 weeks, and there’s 12 months in the year, so 12 sequences of 4 pages should do the trick, right? RIGHT? My goodness, what a blunder. Well, as they say, pobody’s nerfect.

So, at the last minute before we get things ready for our printer, we slotted in a 13th yewniverse that we thought would be digital only - Super Game Quest! In this sequence, Yew finds themselves searching for a missing pixel piece through a number of video game inspired worlds. I think my influences are pretty obvious (hint: I was a Nintendo kid who played way too much Diablo 2 on the PC in high school) but I wonder if you can figure them out when you get the planner into your hands!

Kyle & John, Operations

This week, John and I have been working on our FAQs for the Kickstarter campaign as well as for our website. The biggest FAQ to tackle is: What is the difference between The Hero’s Journal and The Hero’s Planner. 

One of the most important considerations that we make as a team is that we want to make sure that The Hero’s Planner does not come off as a new version of The Hero’s Journal. The Hero’s Planner is designed with the intention of it being a completely different tool than The Hero’s Journal with the same level of storytelling inspiration and kindness the rest of our products have. 

As Nick and I research tactics and best practices for launching brand new products, we came across this idea called “The Osborne Effect”. To spare you the long historical context, it is simply the idea that if you announce the new version of a product too early all of your current products lose their appeal. 

As we launch The Hero’s Planner, we aim not just to show you all of the exciting new features and storytelling on the inside, but also to show you how all of our products have their own specific use cases that allows you to quest with them in tandem or separately from one another.

Renae, Social

Most of you probably know that the Hero’s Journal is run by a small team, which includes some of the most amazing people I know. We have several departments of one but we often cross over into each other’s areas to help out. Over the last month, I’ve been training with John to help out the Hero Service team during the Kickstarter. (I never realized how much work goes into answering messages and wrangling the warehouse gremlins!) Monday is my official first day, so wish me luck!

P.S. I’ll be posting a sneak peek of our Kickstarter video on our social media accounts sometime this week, so stay tuned!

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  • Elisa

    This looks amazing!

  • Jen

    Go team!!!! Thank you for the love and care you put into your products, it shows! :)

  • Jocelyn

    Laura sparked an idea for comment for me. 4 side quest weeks sprinkled throughout the year (about every 3 months). This takes care of the 4 missing weeks but also doesn’t leave the planner months too off skew.

  • Megan Russo

    THIS IS SO EXCITING!!! Thank you for sharing some pages with us :D
    Now, hoping this helps you, for a planner have you all considered a page-a-day planner? Hear me out, I use mine for both personal and professional (I can’t do two planners, I will overschedule if I do) so weekly planners have never worked for me but as far as I’ve seen you only have a weekly one planned. For a daily planner, you could on one page, have a section where one can write the appointments of the day, a to-do list, and a spot for notes. The notes section is an amalgamation of a bunch of sections as needed as the story progresses but things like ‘Potions (meds)/Inventory checklist’, ‘Water/Ration intake’, ‘Workout/Quest of the day’, ‘Fees/Adventure tax due today’, and ‘Battle losses and wins’ could be good examples. At the end of each week, there is a recap or one of your coloring pages. This layout is using the dimensions of a standard A5 planner, though I’m not sure how big you were planning to make yours. And I know, I know, you have a journal and all but the journal as much as I love it doesn’t currently lend itself well to being a planner (trust me I tried)
    Regardless, I’d recommend, since people use planners so differently depending on why they use them, having an option for either a week-a-page or a day-a-page planner. I know the prices would have to be different because there would be more that would have to go in a day planner but I’d 100% be willing to pay more for a planner that I know I can use and I honestly can’t use weekly calendars. I know some people who are the same but I also know others who only use weekly or even monthly calendars so… I don’t know what the best solution would be, or if it’s feasible to have two options per adventure planner, I’ve never run a business but if its something you all think you can do it might be worth looking into.
    Anyway, I love your journal (got it as a gift for my birthday <3) and I’m so excited about the planner. I really hope my comment helps your development team as you move forward

  • Devorah

    I learned a lot from this that I can use to promote my publications. Thanks for sharing. And, the suits were worth the price of admission! I’m really looking forward to having the planner in hand.

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