1. CREATE A PROJECT: To post to Kickstarter, according to the site’s guidelines, you need a “creative project [with] a clear goal, like making an album, a book, or a work of art.” The best lure: documentary films.
2. WRITE A BUDGET: Be specific about where the money is going. For example: “$5,499 for a camera and accessories” and “$5,200 for travel-related expenses and provisions.” Tell backers you’re donating your time.
3. MAKE A VIDEO: This is your sales pitch, so be convincing. “You can’t be just a good mountain climber, you have to be a good communicator,” says Jeff Blumenfeld, author of You Want to Go Where? How to Get Someone to Pay for the Trip of Your Dreams. Make eye contact with the camera. Avoid cue cards.
4. DELIVER: Do everything you say you’re going to do. “You’re just going to screw yourself if you don’t fulfill your obligation,” says Scott Herriott, who has done two campaigns to fund films about hiking the Appalachian Trail. “Plus, if someone misuses the system, it hurts everyone.”