Kickstarting your success

The ilex stable of authors has many impressive members, but in (at least) one respect – crowd-funding – the most impressive is Haje Jan Kamps, who seems to turn almost anything he touches to gold (not literally, that’d be inconvenient). From his photography website set up in his teens, through his bestselling photography book The Rules of Photography and When to Break Them, to starting Triggertrap, a company devoted to creating devices for creative photographers.

How is he such a consistent success across so many fields?

It’s not luck, but stems more from a considered thoughtful approach to entrepreneurship. Especially this time of year many of us can see the appeal of starting something of our own; a business on the side that might just be the next big thing – and we know Kickstarter is out there to help us connect with the cash and the customers. From a few hand-drawn sketches, Haje has reached the million-dollar turnover point in under three years, through two hugely successful Kickstarter projects.

And he’s not alone

$480 million pledges were made in 2013 on Kickstarter alone, and it’s far from the only crowd-finding site out there.

Haje has now gone on to add (alongside CEO of a successful startup with a real, manufactured product) Guest Lecturer in Entrepreneurship and Crowd-Funding at the University of Central London.

So what’s the plan?

It’s our hunch that there will be plenty of you out there interested in learning not just his methods but from a broad cross-section of successes and failures, and so we’ve joined forces with him to offer something unique in the world of publishing. Yes, a book about how to succeed on Kickstarter, but a book bringing together real entrepreneurs; from those who have succeeded already to those on the path.

A photograph taken using Haje's Triggertrap device

A photograph taken using Haje’s Triggertrap device

We see this as the chance to go beyond the traditional publishing model, and seek your input from the start of the project until the moment the book goes to press, and beyond. And what better way to do that than to start on Kickstarter itself?

For a few short but exciting weeks you can pledge the cost of the final book through our own Kickstarter page. If you’ve pledged, you’ll become part of the book; joining a private community with Haje and others like you Haje to ensure that all your questions are answered in the manuscript. Backers will also get their names in the final printed book, as well as a copy of the manuscript the moment it goes to press, to give you a significant headstart. Who knows, perhaps your project will make the edit too? In the words of President Bartlett, “Decisions are made by those who turn up.”

The campaign is live now, so you’d better get your skates on if you want 2014 to be your year of success.

Posted by

Adam Juniper

Associate Publisher at Ilex Photo, Adam is all about photography, from stills to video. He's actually written a couple of books, and spends much of his time lecturing people on how it's not the camera that makes the photo, but the photographer (this is in no way connected to the relative age of his own DSLR).

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