Article #1 – To Kickstart or not to Kickstart?

So you’re considering your own?  GREAT!  The world needs brilliant minds to do what they believe in!  And those brilliant minds need funding, and the voice of experience to guide them.  Kickstarter provides the funding, and I’ll provide some experience.

Should you kickstart your idea?

No. Don’t do it!  (relax, hear me out) Here’s why:

  1. Above all, you need somebody to tell you “No”.  Like a Best Man on the morning of the wedding, “Are you sure?”.  You can’t have everyone saying “Do it!” or you might make a bad choice.  Consider not doing it and see how you feel.
  2. The process can kill you.
    • It will take 9 months or more, and upwards of 80 hours a week at that. YES, 80.  You got that kind of time?  Are you ready to commit to finishing every last step of it when you are burnt out and irritable 6 months from now?
  3. Your family needs you.  If you have a Wife, kids, a 40+ hour a week job, or a very attached vision for your project/art… you’re not going to have time for all of them.  So it’s time to give up your other hobbies for a while.
  4. You’re going to get beat up.  If you don’t have a tough hide, a duck’s back, the soul of a Saint …or are a Weeble… you are going to get beat up by the system and unpleasant people’s negative, often cruel, comments.  (I survived praying to have the soul of a Saint, and all the while believing I’m a Weeble, FYI.)

 

Ok, fine, you can do it. But…

…only if:

  1. You absolutely believe in your idea with 92% to 98.5% of your heart.
    Any less is an insult to those willing to fund you, any more means you won’t do #4 below.
  2. Your design already exists, has been tested and works, and is liked by at least 74% of those who try it.  (We can get that percentage up with time, don’t worry.)
  3. You have a FLAWLESSLY designed budget based on WEEKS of research, AND don’t expect to make mint.   Because “Making Mint” is not something that happens on Kickstarter.
    See Article #7 for tips on how to make a Kickstarter-ready budget.
  4. You can take advice.
  5. You are (or can be) nice to people when they are mean to you.
  6. Your family knows what THEY are getting themselves into.
  7. You’ve prayed about it.  –  Look, I know you’re not all the praying type, and I respect you; but I am, and I trust you respect me too; and I tell you that I would not have survived without this one.  You can take it or leave it, but I will tell you that it’s how I survived the rough patches.

So are you still thinking about this?

Of course you are!
You’re thinking: “Well, I don’t know if I have all that yet… but I might”.
I know.  I was there once too.
So, that’s good enough for now.  I hereby promote you to the next article. ; )

John

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2 thoughts on “Article #1 – To Kickstart or not to Kickstart?

  1. Constance Douglas

    1) Why do you say it takes a lot of time?
    2) Are people buying your product?
    3) If so, do they get one if they make a dollar donation?

    Thanks,
    Constance

    Reply
    1. John Wrot! Post author

      Great questions, Constance.
      1) All the design, pre-planning, managing, processing, email & comment responses, maintenance, updates, campaign page updating, pledge managing, ordering product, budgeting, shipping, and fulfillment are each very time consuming; and together they really add up. I’m much more communicative that many creators I back; one could save a lot of time not responding to emails/comments, but I make it a point to respond to every one personally if at all possible. That’s the one area I can think of that you can shave off time, but for me I just can’t take away from that area.
      2) Yes. It’s a “pledge” for one, but every business and legal entity in the world sees it as a business transaction. So expectation to deliver, taxes, etc are all of importance there. – If you’re alternately asking if my products personally have been successful, yes to that too, both during and after the campaigns. After = more income, but also more time added to #1 above (usually worth it!).
      3) No. For $1 they get access to the Project Updates, and if it’s a game I’m making I give access to the Print n’ Play (free download paper version), but not the final product. For that a full pledge for the product amount + shipping (where applicable) must be made.

      Thanks for the great questions.

      John

      Reply

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