Kickstarter is such a wonderful playground of all things awesome that we want and someone has decided to make. Almost everyone out there these days knows of Kickstarter. And most of us or someone we know has backed a Kickstarter at some point. The vast majority of funded Kickstarter’s produce their pitched product and you go on your way. Happy in the transaction that you got something before it hit the storefronts and made something that unlikely would have been possible in some cases if it did not fund.
Kickstarter has become so successful in the past few years that even major companies have gotten into the game. Often pushing back burner projects on to Kickstater to see if there is even an interest in a project that they may have been financially worried about trying to produce. Or sometimes with the intent to do a small focused print run for a product that only has a niche audience.
Over all it has been a great thing for everyone all around. Yet more and more we hear the stories of Kickstarter’s gone wrong. They are very much real and there are many of them. Do not confuse a project that fails to back with a Kickstarter gone wrong. These are the projects that back and bail. Or fail to produce anything near the promised quality. As well the kick that sometimes literally takes forever to complete.
Along with reviews one of the things that I look forward to posting often on my blog are Kickstarter’s. It is a time when I can reach out and tell the people who come to my blog hey here are a few things I think you should look at because I think they are cool. But I want everyone to know. Just because I or anyone recommends a project. Does not mean it will fund or project managers will finish the project. With all things kick starter you are taking a risk. But there are some ways you can reduce the risks you take with a kick.
- Look and see if the project is being run by an established company or an experienced project manager.
- Look and see if they have run successful Kickstarter’s in the past.
- How much of the project is already complete
- Look at similar projects and compare, Are they asking for funding around the same levels of other projects of this type.
Now with anything and any one you are going to give your money to keep an eye on the Kickstarter’s you back. Watch your kick develop as it reaches funding and any set goals. After all its half the fun of backing projects is to watch them succeed. You also should be watching to see if the project takes a turn in a way you do not like. Allowing you to back out of the project before it funds.
Most projects go months before delivery and that is common. But are you getting updates on the project? If your project creator goes silent this might be a sign of worry. Use the comments section and be polite. Ask for updates. BE POLITE. Give them a chance to explain and the benefit of the doubt.
Remember that delivery dates are not in stone they are an estimate. Hopefully a good project will keep you up to speed on any changes in delivery. So don’t worry if your item is a little late. But when a few weeks begin turning into months. Now you might be in troubled waters.
As of the writing of this bog the worst part of a failed kickstarter right now is this. Nearly all credit card companies will only let you dispute charges up to 120 days old. And a good many projects give themselves a standard 4-6 month window to produces and ship their product. This is normal, but it also means that if they begin falling behind and they fail to commit to their end of the bargain you likely to be out of money. So here is the golden kickstarter rule.
Never spend money on a kickstarter you can not afford to lose.