Some of you may know about Kickstarter, but to some, it will be new, so hang in and follow along…
Hi, my name is Marsh and I’m addicted to Kickstarter.
It all started because of my love for, and fascination with, gadgets. At first, it was just small things like smartphones, apps and anything that buzzes, whirs or makes a lights up. Then someone turned me on to Kickstarter and that is where things got worse
For those of you who may not know Kickstarter, it is a crowdsource platform for new products and services. Think of it as a storefront for ideas, the ultimate in window shopping. Anyone who follows the Kickstarter guidelines can launch a product. Companies promote their offering via a mini business plan, product description and usually a promotional video. They establish a fundraising goal for the launch and let people vote with their wallets.
Once a goal has been reached through donations or “pre-selling,” the money is released by Kickstarter and the race is on. Anyone watching gets a real-time view into the process of starting a new company or launching a new product including some of the risk. There are no guarantees, and if the product doesn’t come together or the company runs out of money you may not get anything.
But, the other side of the coin is you may get something absolutely wonderful, assist a company’s launch and feel like you made a difference by helping someone achieve their dream.
To date, I’ve backed (Kickstarter speak for purchased) nineteen different products or services, seventeen of which reached their funding goals. Projects that went forward include everything from Columbus, Oh based Seventh Son Brewing to Hickies, a replacement for shoelaces, to an artist making beautiful wood furniture from reclaimed lumber. You name it and you will find it on Kickstarter.
More and more new companies are eschewing the road of investors and going straight to the marketplace to test, and fund, their ideas. It’s working, and lest you think this is just for small things, I’m waiting to receive my new Pebble watch which came to life on Kickstarter and raised a record $10,266,845 by pre-selling their offering.
Kickstarter has redefined the marketplace for innovation in technology, the arts, design, food, photography, publishing, theater and more. If you don’t know Kickstarter have some fun and check it out…but give your credit card to someone you trust with firm instructions not to give it back.
The 17 projects I’ve backed before the family intervention include: