8 Rules to Follow when Coming Up with an Effective Kickstarter Campaign Title & Sub-Title

Every week I consult with first-time creators. We discuss what works and what doesn’t when launching a crowdfunding campaign. A lot of creators don’t fully understand the role their title will play in attracting backers to their campaign.

Campaign titles are important. If your campaign title is horrible, then it will create a poor first impression on backers you’re trying to impress. If it is brilliant, it can become a rally cry that inspires new backers and makes it easy for supporters to share your campaign with their own network.

What people don’t always realize is their campaign title will show up all over the web. It won’t just live on your Kickstarter page. It will show up in Facebook posts, Tweets, search results, in journalist’s articles, and more.

Here are eight rules every creator should follow when creating their campaign title.

1. Only 7 or 8 Words

Ultra-successful campaigns tend to have 7 or 8 words in their title. They’re long enough to give potential backers a glimpse into what the campaign is all about, yet short enough to not overwhelm someone browsing a page full of other campaigns.

Campaign titles that are too short come off vague, generic, or just plain confusing. People who might be interested in supporting your campaign won’t be able to tell what you are doing and will simply move on. For example, “The Great Journey” is not an ideal project title because it is so non-specific. Is it a documentary film about migrating birds or a campaign supporting someone’s travel habit?

2. Use Proper Nouns… Especially Your Brand Name

The vast majority of successful crowdfunding campaigns include proper nouns in their title. This might be your brand name, the title of the film or album you’re launching, the city where you’re opening a restaurant, or the event you’re raising money to attend. Proper nouns will make your campaign come off as not generic. Not to mention that a crowdfunding campaign an excellent opportunity to rally a ton of momentum for your brand.

3. Include Action Verbs

Backers are giving you money so that you can take an action. What action are you going to take? Tell them by including action verbs in your title. Illustrate what your project is going to do. Be bold. Use action verbs specific to how your project will change the world, shift an industry, or help someone in need.

Here are our favorite action verbs that make a crowdfunding campaign title pop:

– Revolutionize
– Change
– Inspire
– Create
– Skyrocket
– Discover
– Establish
– Innovate
– Dominate
– Overcome
– Restructure
– Cure
– Transform
– Provoke
– Energize
– Advance
– Accelerate
– Progress

You’ll likely only have room for one action verb, so choose the right one and make it count.

4. Avoid “Help” Words

Everyone browsing Kickstarter, IndieGoGo, GoFundMe, or other crowdfunding websites already knows that you’re fundraising. Don’t waste precious title space telling people what they already know. Save space for more effective words by eliminating “help”, “fund”, “raise money”, and “support” from your campaign title.

5. Be Specific

Surprisingly, a lot of first-time creators miss this. Your title needs to be specific to your project. It needs to include the word, or words, that describe the thing you’re trying to crowdfund. This will give potential backers a generally clear picture of what your campaign is about.

For example, if you’re crowdfunding a new line of designer jeans, then the word “jeans” needs to be in your title. If you’re starting an organic bakery, launching a line of stand-up paddleboards, or crowdfunding a real estate transaction, then “bakery”, “stand-up paddleboards” and “real estate” need to be included in your campaign title.

6. Use Punctuation as Visual Cues

Punctuation can be useful in eliminating words and helping readers better interpret what your campaign title is saying. For example, a colon placed between your company name and your first action verb will make your brand stand out and eliminate unnecessary words like “of” or “the”. An exclamation point at the end of the title is also an option.

7. Insert an Industry Buzzword

Keep in mind that your campaign title is not just designed to attract potential backers. It will also be seen by journalists and bloggers who cover your industry or crowdfunding in general. For this reason, you might try to insert an industry buzzword that will catch the eye of the casual writer looking for a story.

8. Don’t Be Afraid to Change It Up

Realistically, you have until your campaign launches to decide on your project title. So take your time, bounce ideas with friends and co-workers, and don’t settle on a title too quickly. And if the title you choose doesn’t get the results you want, you can always change it up. In fact, Kickstarter will let you change your campaign title while still indexing your old title in their search results.

And When it Comes to Sub-titles…

Sub-titles are the one or two sentences of text that often appear beneath your campaign title in search results or at the top of your campaign profile page. Your campaign sub-title is what potential backers are going to read right after they see your title, and right before they decide to click or not click to find out more about your campaign.

Your title and sub-title should be brainstormed, developed, and tested together to ensure continuity. When viewed together, they should “kind of” summarize your project. Combined they are a teaser. It doesn’t tell them everything or try to be all inclusive, but rather it should attempt to leave a bit of intrigue to get the click.

A more comprehensive post about crafting the perfect campaign sub-title is on its way. But in the meantime, stick to these quick tips when crafting your own tease phrase.

– Use Fragmented Sentences. Complete sentences take up too much space. You want to instead focus on meaningful phrases that both inform and build intrigue.

– Avoid Calls to Help. Just like with your title, these words are a waste of time and space.

– Talk about Your Passion. Crowdfunding is emotional. And the campaigns that are able to express the passion of the creator get more support than the ones that don’t

Now it’s Your Turn

Have other tips for crafting the perfect crowdfunding campaign title and sub-title? Seen any particularly effective, creative, or otherwise noteworthy campaign titles?

Need feedback on your own Kickstarter or Indiegogo campaign title?

Please share in the comments!

About The Author

Matt Dahse

Matt is an investment banker and entrepreneur specializing in raising capital and building business infrastructure. Prior to founding Fundster, Matt co-founded multiple social-collaboration businesses, including Newswire, Backpack Forever, Cancer.im, and EXT.