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Old 06-30-2020, 07:27 AM   #141
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Join Date: Aug 2004
Default Re: Steve Jackson Games' GURPS 2020 PDF Challenge

I continue to see "this makes no sense!" and "what's the catch?" comments regarding the upcoming GURPS 2020 PDF Challenge. For those unaware, I thought I'd use personal experience to demonstrate how and why the GURPS 2020 PDF Challenge exists and how, yes, it's real.

Last fall, in October, I ran a personal Kickstarter campaign to create a single 14-page PDF. Systemless fantasy RPG support, the PDF included no game statistics and the $1 pledge was all that it took for a backer to get the new PDF.

But, there was more than just one PDF. The project stretch goals, if unlocked, would each add another 14-page PDF to the project's rewards. Ultimately, by the time the campaign came to a close, there were 1,951 backers who pledged a total of $11,110 to the campaign. For the $1 pledge, backers received a total of seventeen 14-page PDFs.

How, you may ask, did 1,951 backers generate over $11,000 in support? The project offered more than just the $1 reward level. For example, the $20 reward included several of my earlier works, and 310 backers selected that $20 level. (Over half of the funding right there!)

By working as a group to support the campaign, all of the project backers created an incredible deal where everyone received a bargain. Those who had been following my work were able to spend just a buck, as those new to my work spent a bit more to get the new stuff and some of the older titles.

Now, that $11,110 in support was excellent, but that isn't where the story ends. To this day, I offer the seventeen PDFs at a price of $15 (for all 17) in my personal Kickstarter campaign. Since that October project last year, over 1,000 supporters of my other works have chosen to include that set of seventeen PDFs in their rewards. That's another $15,000 in revenue -- over and above the $11,110 generated in the original campaign -- that has come in thanks to that work.

Even after we subtract the Kickstarter fees and the cash spent on stock art, the overall project was still very much worth my time and, better still, it helped to introduce even more gamers to my personal works. At a buck, a lot more people were willing to give my efforts a shot, and many of those who said "I'll buy that for a dollar" have come back again and again to support my newer works.

Late last year, as I was crunching numbers on the personal work, I realized that we could try something similar at the office. The $1 reward wouldn't work -- overhead is much higher for a business than it is a single person -- but the basics of the approach could work for GURPS. So we discussed the idea, and we decided to give it a shot.

Sean and the team then went to work, planning out the dozen PDFs that we would create before launching a campaign. Once those were done, it was time to build the Kickstarter page and start sharing the word: "The more support this project gets, the better everyone's rewards!"

Which brings us to today, the day before project launch, and we're now left with a single question:

Can we unlock all twelve PDFs before the clock runs out?

Follow the project today:

Last edited by philreed; 06-30-2020 at 08:27 AM.
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