We did it! We’ve hit our goal. From the recent popularity of the campaign, we hoped that by the time we came in on Tuesday morning, we should have reached it. And we did – just…
It’s really exciting, as well as being a huge relief, and we still have eight days to go, so we’re having a little sweepstake around the office to try and guess what the final total will be. The highest so far is £70,000 and the lowest is £56,000 so there’s quite a range.
The Kickstarter page is constantly on screen, constantly updating, and at half past three in the morning we got an email from Kickstarter congratulating us on reaching our target. The support we’ve had and the amount of people willing us on has been phenomenal. It’s overwhelming; these aren’t necessarily people who have known us before the campaign, these are people that have learnt about the company through the Kickstarter, and have become super fans, it’s really incredible. One of the great things about Kickstarter is harnessing the power of its database; the platform has been a really great marketing tool for us, to reach a much wider audience with our products. It’s been amazing hearing from all of the members of the Kickstarter community who have reached out to us during our campaign.
All of this hard work is to fund our unique online customisation tool, which gives our customers the power to design their own leather bag.
To start with, we’re looking at getting 20 of our standard bag patterns loaded into the tool – each of these patterns will have its own set of customisations, for example: a slip pocket on the back, interchangeable backpack and shoulder straps, bolt on handles or pockets. Every bag will have a list of customisations, so, once you’ve constructed the bag you want, you’ll move on to choosing the leather. We’re looking at getting more leathers, ideally we’d like a full hexachrome palette of 216 different colours.
We’d also like to add the possibility to customise the thread colours on each satchel, and to be able to add fabrics to certain panels on the bags from a palette of different fabrics in stock. We’re also looking at patterns and prints; so if customers want a Union Jack on one of the pockets, we’d make it happen. If they wanted a polka dot pattern on some panels and then stripes on the others, we can do that for them. The possibilities are endless.
The next goal is the ability to upload artwork onto any panel and, if they haven’t got their own artwork, then browse an image library. We’ve partnered with Shutterstock to produce a merchandising licence for all of their artwork, so customers can browse the library and use whichever image they want, be it a cat, a dog or an emu.
Customers can put their own designs on their bags – everything from wedding photos and pets to their kids’ drawings. We’re even looking at the possibility of integrating our customisation tool with social media platforms like Instagram, so that customers can enter their account details and then plaster their bag with any of the images from their account. There are some really nice integrations that we can do.
Now that we know we’ve hit our target, we’re looking at the logistics of getting people’s orders shipped as soon as possible. Items like keyrings, and tablet cases are really quite simple to make because they’re made from one colour of leather, so we can start pre-making them. We can also start working on the orders for the customers who purchased the Early Bird offers and – once the campaign is finished and the money has come through – we can start shipping them. There’s still so much work to do – we’ve got to gather the information from all of the pledges about what bags people want – we can start doing that straight away now.
I knew that we were going to do it. After we made changes to the campaign site and I saw the increase in pledges, I had a feeling that we would make it. It’s been a bit of a rollercoaster journey but now that we’ve actually made it, it’s a huge relief. I’m shattered, but there’s only a week left – and that’s when all the hard work really begins.