A Close Look at a Podcast Kickstarter Campaign

The team behind the upcoming Unseen shares their tips, their worries, and the gamified marketing that led to their success.

When Long Story Short Productions launched the Kickstarter for their upcoming urban fantasy fiction podcast, Unseen, they prepared for the worst. Founders Gabriel Urbina, Sarah Shachat, and Zach Valenti knew they'd have some fans who were likely to support them: the team's first audio drama, Wolf 359, is one of the clearest examples of success in the industry. Amassing over six million downloads and over 900 Patreon supporters, Wolf 359 also inspired deep loyalty  in its fanbase, measurable in everything from fan works to tattoos.

But the team still had their worries. Wolf 359 ended in 2017, and while the team has produced works since—notably their fiction limited series TIME BOMBS and Zero Hours, along with an ongoing creative discussion podcast No Bad Ideas—Unseen was to be their return to longform audio drama. Podcasting can often feel like creating into a void, speaking to an audience you can't be sure is really there. So the team tried to keep their expectations grounded when launching the Kickstarter. "I was sort of calculating like, how much money can I leave in my bank account to pull us across the finish line [...]

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