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  1. #1
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2012

    $369,569 In Funding - Kickstarter - PID-Controlled Espresso Machine

    Total Funded: $369,569
    Project Urls:

    #1 Tell us a little bit about yourself and your project.

    The Nocturn was originally conceived out of need. We were three college students who loved coffee, and who couldn't find a great home espresso machine in our student-sized budget. We started cannibalizing espresso machines from Craigslist, and eventually decided we could make a better machine, for less. The Nocturn offers exceptional temperature and pressure control and some sweet digital features to give home baristas the professional tools they deserve.

    We launched our project in December, 2011, seeking $20,000 for a home foundry and shop to hand-build 25-50 machines. By the end of our campaign we had raised almost $370,000 from 1500+ backers, and we're now closing in on full-scale production.

    ZPM is a 3-person team, made up of Igor, Gleb, and Janet. We've known each other for a long time and have been working on ZPM for almost two years now.

    #2 Why did you choose Kickstarter out of all the crowdfunding platforms that exist today? Do you think you could have succeeded in funding your project on another crowdfunding platform? If so, which?

    When we launched our project in December, 2011, Kickstarter was gaining a lot of momentum and consequently generating a lot of traffic for its projects, so it was the natural choice for us. It was essentially the 'default' option.

    Today I think there's more differentiation among the platforms, and as people become more comfortable with the idea of crowdfunding I expect those platforms to differentiate themselves based on the types of projects/businesses they cater to and the resources they provide.

    Today you can already see that Kickstarter is reinforcing its focus on creative projects, while Indiegogo is opening up to be more business, technology, and startup-friendly. The platform you choose should probably be informed by the nature of your project.

    #3 What do you feel contributed the most to the success of your project? Where did all these people who funded your project come from?

    A lot of hustle! We've helped out with a few other projects, and the thing people underestimate most is the amount of time it takes to run a successful campaign. There was no one thing that made the project successful; it's a combination of crafting a story that really hooks people in, doing lots of planning and outreach, and making sure that you're being responsive to the feedback you get and getting your community involved.

    #4 What was something that you learned from having a successful Kickstarter project which you did not know prior to going live?

    I think a lot of the power of crowdfunding is that it gets a whole community involved in the creation of a project. People who back crowdfunding projects are intelligent, enthusiastic, and usually have tons of expertise related to the projects they're backing. That's a huge resource!

    We were surprised to discover how much people want to be involved in the process, and we've gotten some great help and advice from our backers.

    #5 What mistakes do you think you may have made along the way on your crowdfunding journey?

    We've made all kinds of mistakes, mostly coming from the inexperience of our team and the unexpected success of our campaign. Our biggest mistake during the campaign was probably not pushing harder to get more eyes on the project. Once it really started to take off, we had to scramble to drastically change our entire production plan. We couldn't make 1500 machines by hand, so all of a sudden we had to deal with the drastically different logistics of setting up full-scale production, revising the design for manufacturing, and tons of other considerations we hadn't thought of before.

    We started to get intimidated by the numbers. In retrospect, we should have done as much as we could to make the project as big as possible - strength in numbers!

    #6 If you could give advice to someone thinking about launching a crowdfunding campaign, what would it be?

    Don't underestimate the power of good planning. We've helped out on a few projects, and project creators always want to rush into the funding process while underestimating the amount of time and concentration the campaign is going to take. The more work you can do beforehand, the better!

    #7 Now that your project has been fully funded, what issue or unexpected occurrences have you run into, if any?

    We've encountered every manufacturing problem there is - certification, quality control, design issues. The project has been incredibly trying, and incredibly rewarding. Throughout it all we've made communication a priority, and I think that's something that can really help projects succeed in the eyes of their backers.

    Murphy's law always dominates. Part of the fun of crowdfunding projects is that you get to be a part of that journey, which includes all the unexpected bumps in the road. Backers should know that when they buy in, and project creators should realize that when they turn to crowdfunding for their projects.

    ZPM Espresso | Inspired by Coffee

  2. #2
    An excellent interview which should be mandatory reading for anyone contemplating creating a campaign.

    Time and time again we read this from successful campaigners -
    Don't underestimate the power of good planning.

  3. #3
    Great insight. Congrats on the success.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
    San Jose, CA
    Good interview. Our campaign was planned as much as possible and there are still things we did not think of.

  5. #5
    Limited time: The SoGo Mini! (now on kickstarter) #indiegogo #kickstarter #sogomini

    Hopefully we can be as successful as this project!

  6. #6
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    That's over three hundred thousand dollars. You seriously raised that much.

  7. #7
    Good interview

  8. #8
    Well thought out and executed

  9. #9
    Great interview, Nescafe and George Clooney's advert will benefit you.

  10. #10
    very cool

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