Founded in 2009, Kickstarter has grown incredibly rapidly. In 2012 Kickstarter brought in about $320 million. In 2013 Kickstarter raised $480 million, in 2014 they brought in $529 million, and in 2015 they generated $692 million. If you're interested in getting your share of the $50+ million a month flowing through Kickstarter...you're on the right website.
Kickstarter is a rewards based crowdfunding website. People present their projects to the world by creating a mini website on Kickstarter that describes what they'd like to do. They also explain why they want to do it and what rewards they are willing to provide for various levels of support. Every project has a specific dollar goal associated with it. If the goal is not reached the supporters (Backers) are not out any money and no funds are provided to the project's creator. Projects can and often do exceed their financial goals. Funding received in excess of the goal supports expansion of the original project scope and additional profit to the originator of the project (Creator).
While we are still in the early days of Kickstarter, already 195 projects have brought in over $1 million...and the numbers are climbing. So what are the Kickstarter guidelines and what does it take to run a successful Kickstarter project?
Your project needs to have creative aspects to it and it will need to fit into one of the following categories (although some creativity here may help): Art, Comics, Crafts, Dance, Design, Fashion, Film & Video, Food, Games, Journalism, Music, Photography, Publishing, Technology, and Theater. If you're not sure that your project could fit into one of the categories please call us to discuss the various options.
There are also some types of projects that are prohibited by Kickstarter. While most of the restrictions are reasonable, a few are a bit surprising. Be sure to get some feedback on your project idea before going very far down the development path.
In addition to complying with the Kickstarter rules you and your project need a few other characteristics to succeed. Your project idea must be such that lots of people will be interested in supporting it. Your rewards need to be appealing to the community likely to support your effort, and you must have the capability of communicating to lots of people about your project.
Kickstarter represents an excellent alternative to applying for grants. Business grants, allegedly free government grants, and the hard to pursuade angel investor have one thing in common. A person or a small committee decides if you are worthy of support. If they don't smile upon your project, you're out of business. Crowdfunding however is a democratic process where no single person can block your project from the funds you need. Traditional firms and organizations pursuing nonprofit fundraising are welcome to utilize Kickstarter. Corporate projects, school projects, and church fundraiser ideas are all welcome.