Plot Devices

From idea to profitable business

Organization

Role

Timeline

Overview
What began as an idea from filmmaker, Seth Worley, a team of three leveraged a successful Kickstarter campaign into a successful business.
Challenge
A filmmaker, myself, and a project manager set out to create a Kickstarter campaign to produce a utilitarian notebook for writers and filmmakers. After crunching our numbers, we needed to raise $12,500 to be successful.
OBJECTIVE
Create a tool that helps screenwriters turn their ideas into stories using the storyclock method.
RESULT
Through user research, prototyping, design, and marketing, we leveraged a Kickstarter campaign into a successful business with multiple products.
Process
Though creating a digital was tempting, we wanted to keep the tactile nature of the writing process to be kept in tact. Scouring other notebook offerings out there, different layouts were tried to see what design elements were helpful.
Testing
We carried these notebooks around in our backpacks, purses, and back pockets, trying to emulate everyone from the casual writer to an on-the-go student. Did they sizes of the notebook make sense? Too big, too small, or just right? After a few revisions, we landed on our print-ready notebook.
Launch and Results
Hoping we'd hit our goal of $12,500 over the course of 30 days, we launched. It was quickly picked up as a 'Project We Love' by Kickstarter and we were off to the races. Within 24 hours, we hit our goal. We were shocked. We devoted a slack channel to shouting backers names. By the end of the 30 days, we were shocked by the results.
Goal
$12,500
Total pledged
$122,310
­čĄ»
So now what?
We were excited, sure. But were were also confused. What do we do now? Take the money and run?

Nope. Let's see how far we can take this. And with that decision, we started a business. Plot Devices was born.
mission statement
Plot Devices strives to make products that cultivate spontaneity and resourcefulness in the trenches of filmmaking.
We formed our mission statement and even created a company mascot, Jingles. The award-winning, screenwriter.
Expanding the product line
We looked to other aspects of filmmaking to provide other notebooks. We quickly landed on the storyboarding process and created the Storyboard Notebook. We also beefed up the features of the original two notebooks and released them in workbook forms, with more content and in a larger size.
Marketing was always in a light and helpful tone, never taking itself too seriously. We produced tutorials for every product released.
With every order, customers would receive a reversible poster with our mascot, Jingles the cat, on one side and a fun quote on the other.
Milestones
Guided product, brand, and marketing design from idea to launch
Products picked up by the Academy Museum
Presented Plot Devices to interns at Bad Robot
Saw continued growth in sales by x%
Learnings
While I no longer work with Plot Devices, I learned that being scrappy, testing and listening to feedback, and the ability to tell a compelling story can lead to results that exceed your expectations.