Need ideas: fun rewards for Mindfire book pre-orders?

I’m setting up a page on Kickstarter to let folks preorder my next book, MindFire (details here).

One downsides with self-publishing is pre-orders are a logistical challenge – every author I’ve asked has used the wonderful kickstarter to make it work.

The upside is this: I can give away crazy things with book pre-orders. Some possible ideas are:

  • (These are examples)
  • For $XX, you’ll get the book, and I’ll write an essay on the blog on any topic you wish.
  • Buy 5 copies, and serenade you on video with a song of your choice.
  • A personal youtube video lecture
  • A visit to your company (as in I get on a plane and give a talk of your choice at your office, or favorite bar)
  • A phone consultation (use my brain as you wish for 30 minutes)
  • A copy signed with a personal note to your boss.
  • The possibilities are endless…

Have ideas? What fun things should I include on the kickstarter page for MindFire?

Leave a comment. Thanks.



18 Responses to “Need ideas: fun rewards for Mindfire book pre-orders?”

  1. Dave S

    Great talk last night (IS#15)!! I learned something. Thanks!

    * Book signing at larger/focused independent/university bookstores (perhaps tied to NaNoWriMo?)
    * Broadly focused audio or video for download exclusively available (for a limited time) to those who purchase the book

  2. Jack Dempsey

    Review the contributor’s startup. If applicable (it doesn’t bomb your review), write a post on it, good and bad. Publicity + learning = win.

  3. Piotr Tyburski

    One of your goals for 2010 was to learn to draw (you did remember, didn’t you?). You could therefore give a drawing on a chosen topic.

    1. Scott Berkun

      Piotr: Yes, but I have totally failed at this goal. Its been my nemesis. I’ve started and stopped quite a few times. But I am not giving up. Maybe this is a meta-goal for the next book – to be able to do something like you suggest.

  4. Andy McA

    An interpretive dance of the contributors choice…in shakira costume, complete with wig.

  5. Phil Simon

    I used Kickstarter for the last two books, as you know.

    Offer for a decent amount of money a signed copy of every book you ever write. I got some hits on that new wrinkle.

  6. Karen White

    Are you Kindle publishing? Pre-orders for a reduced price are always welcome!

  7. Chris K

    Looking forward to the Kindle version. Like Karen says, pre-order discount? =)

  8. Evan Jacobs

    Hi Scott!

    I loved “Confessions” and I’m really looking forward to “Mindfire”. I’m also the creator of Kindlegraph ( which is a service that allows authors to send personal digital inscriptions directly to the reading devices of their fans.

    There are currently over 6000 books from 1200 authors available for Kindlegraphs including such notable authors as Guy Kawasaki, Brad Feld and Eric Ries. The service is free and I think it would be a great reward for people who pre-order your new book but of course I’m biased :)

  9. Malcolm

    A few ideas:
    a) Offering co-author (or perhaps subtitle, back cover, or forward mention on your next book?
    b) LinkedIn / Facebook connection?
    c) X tweets (where X is some appropriate number)?
    d) Program Purchase Tracking – Offer to companies that purchase combinations of new book and old books as part of employee training program, to compare them versus competitors, update regularly, and perhaps talk at their AGM / on conference calls / to shareholders — perhaps partner with a big consulting firm / investment bank to execute?
    e) Referral Code Game… 1 point for use of referral code with purchase, 0.5 for referral code purchase use of referred player… book / other prizes for the winners and totals by referral code at 1 day, 1 week, 1 month, and 3 months…

  10. James

    Some ideas:

    * Share a Coffee/Beer when you are in town

    * An essay with a collection of Scott’s top 20 #Fails

    * An essay with 25 things you didn’t know about Scott Berkun.

    * 30 Min Skype Consultation

    * A signed copy of the book with your favorite quote and a personalized thank note.

    * A free Kindle with the ebook version of Mindfire

    * A “gold” version of the book including pieces of writing that are not included in the official published version.

    1. Steve

      The majority of preorders will be from your biggest followers who own and have read all your books and hence the biggest thanks to them would be the following:

      1. Meet up / event tickets (VIP)
      2. Signed copies of future books
      3. Chance to contribute to future books (editor, co-author, design etc)

      Keep up the good work!


    2. Corporate Geek

      A big discount to a deluxe/collector’s edition that features the story on how the book was made, maybe some excerpts from the book that did not make it to the final version, any “artwork” relevant to the book. Just like great games do (Warcraft, Oblivion, Fallout, Witcher, etc.)

  11. Jeff

    I like the ideas of either 1 hour over the phone consultation or to meet with you in person for 1 hour when your in there town. Either way the person gets to “pick your brain”.



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