9 min 3 sec

Man Consults for Crowdfunding Campaigns After Successfully Raising $4 Million

After raising millions of dollars through crowdfunding at his day job, one man leverages his knowledge to start a side hustle helping others launch successful campaigns.
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What It's About

After mastering the formula for the perfect crowdfunding campaign, a man takes the skills he developed at his day job and starts a consulting business.

Business Model
Skills Required
Raising Money & Communication
Profit Potential

Words of Wisdom

Not sure when to launch your crowdfunding campaign? One of Derek's tips mentioned in the episode is his '40-72 Rule' which states that your campaign is ready to launch when you can fund at least 40% of your whole goal within 72 hours using only your email list. Raising money that fast positions your campaign to catch the eye of Kickstarter staff, and there's no better way to catch the eye of Kickstarter than having a project that funds extremely fast with an actively engaged audience from day one. After all, campaign velocity begets more campaign velocity.

Fun Fact

Derek has successfully raised over $4 million on Kickstarter through the Cyanide & Happiness Show and Joking Hazard campaigns. For his book, he interviewed creators of successful campaigns that combined raised over $30 million.

Notes from Chris

Episode 220

In 2013 Derek Miller successfully crowdfunded more than $750k for his day job—The Cyanide & Happiness, a show with over 7 million YouTube subscribers. As successful as that campaign was, he made a number of silly mistakes that cost him money. It was then that he first had the idea to put everything he did and everything he learned into a book that could help others with their crowdfunding campaign. But the idea died for a couple years, even though people would ask him for advice and he did some light consulting on a couple campaigns.

The idea came back around in 2016 when he helped raise $3.2 million in a crowdfunding campaign for a card game called Joking Hazard. Again people started asking for his help so Derek pushed himself to start putting all of his ideas down on paper into a book.

As he started writing his ideas down, he realized he needed more stories and examples than just his own. So he started cold-emailing his network to see who was interested in being interviewed for his book. During this process that he kept running into people that needed help on their campaigns, and saw the need for crowdfunding consulting, but didn’t really realize it was a thing. Before he knew it, he was well on his way to a successful consulting side hustle!

At this point, he’s brought in nearly $10,000 in 2017 and is expecting another $20,000 from various campaigns by the end of the year. He’s also working on a video course and paid workshops — so that he can scale up, beyond one-to-one consulting.


  • Six-Figure Crowdfunding: Learn more of Derek's tips and tricks for successful crowdfunding campaigns on his website
  • Beeminder: The productivity app that Derek used to help himself stay focused—basically, you bet on yourself to finish a specific goal, otherwise you lose money

Inspiration is good; inspiration combined with action is better. Now get back to work!

Yours in the revolution,


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Quote of the Day
"The most surprising thing about this side hustle is learning how little I knew. It's easy to get caught up in our functional bubbles in our full-time jobs, confident in our abilities. Having the side hustle has really humbled me, and it was that humility that's lead to so much more personal growth than I could imagine."
—Derek Miller #SideHustleSchool

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Chris Guillebeau