August 21, 2009

Kickstarter – Get Funding For Your Project


Kickstarter bills itself as a way to fund ideas, events, and endeavors. It’s a way to fund anything from a school trip to a small business, just by listing your project and asking for money. And if you enjoy supporting creativity or just helping out, it’s a great place to find new projects to donate to. As a project creator, you can do almost anything to get the word out about your project, such as offering rewards for certain pledges. Those who pledge money get project updates so they can track the progress of the project.

On Kickstarter, people pledge money through Amazon, but they don’t have to pay a thing unless all of the money is raised by the target date. While it’s true that raising $2,000 when you need $10,000 won’t help your project, it seems hard to lose out if you raise $9,999. Kickstarter is currently free, though you will need an invite to start your creative or inventive project. In the meantime, it’s fun to browse the projects already listed and see how much money has been raised.

Practical Uses:

  • Get sponsorship to buy costumes for your high school play
  • Fund a church mission trip
  • Raise money for your next short film
  • Find a community project to support

Insider Tips:

  • You can only start projects if you sign up for the site (currently invite-only)
  • Marketing is key to making sure you raise the money you need; if you don’t, you get nothing
  • Use the ‘Manage Your Pledge’ button to adjust or cancel the amount pledged to a project
  • Use the on screen status bar to get an at a glance view of how project funding is going

What we liked:

  • Payments are processed through Amazon, which most people know and trust
  • The size of the project you need funded doesn’t matter
  • If you pledge money, you can change the amount at any time before the project ends
  • Communication is handled through Kickstarter, so your email address is kept private

What we didn’t like:

  • It’s not easy to know for sure if project creators will/are using the money as communicated
  • You cannot pledges anonymously
  • A goal that is “almost there” doesn’t count; if your project is $1 short of the funding total requested, project creators get nothing


Company Info:

  • Launched: April 2009
  • Privately Held
  • Headquarters: Brooklyn, NY
  • Founded by: Perry Chen, Yancey Strickler, Charles Adler, Lance Ivy, Andy Baio
  • Web site:


  • Free (in beta)


  1. The Greater St.Louis Air & Sopace Museum, needs funds for next years operating budget. WE can offer a free plane ride to donors, and a free 2-day Aviation show at Scott AFB, near Belleville< IL. in Mid- Sept. 2010. We will have a booth there to tell our story, and explain our needs for funds for 2011 budget.

  2. Kickstarter is an interesting idea. But that is where it stops. The idea has yet to come into a practical reality. I currently have a kickstarter project running. The literature refers to a ‘kickstarter community.’ that you can attract for $10-$25 rewards. However, there is no kickstarter community. The project must bring its own backers! What is the point of having Kickstarter if you already have backers??

    Based on the success stories posted, I conclude that this is a good place for established small businesses to offer new products to an existing customer base. They can ‘pre-order’ projects at a discounted price. Examples: a shoe company offers customers a new style shoe at a discount if they ‘pre-order them’. A recording artist offers a new album to existing fans at a discounted rate if they ‘pre-order’. Kickstarter just takes the risk out of ‘pre-ordering’ by telling would-be customers that if they can’t raise enough money to complete their new product, then they are not obligated to fulfill the orders. No one gets mad, that’s all.

    The second problem is that even if Kickstarter had an interested, altruistic community interested in funding new projects, the website is set up for favoritism and corruption. The entire set up displays only what are called ‘popular’ projects and ‘recommended’ projects- about six in all ! The search capabilities are so favorably prejudiced toward these projects that people would be completely unaware that more projects even existed.

    I’m posting this review because I don’t want anyone else to waste a solid month of hard work preparing like I did. I had read earlier complaints but didn’t heed them. I hope you heed this one. New artists without a lot of moneyed customers ready to pay up early need not apply at

  3. Flower White

    @susan I am lead to reply to your negative slant on Kickstarter.

    It’s a wonderful thing. You DO have to promote with social media sending out lots of links to facebook twitter, etc. BUT where else on the web can you basically ask the world to help you out with your projects?

    The website is NOT corrupt also they do not descrimate as they allowed my friend who has a sex worker film fest, to promote it!!

    Be nice to Kickstarter, it’s a wonderful thing!

  4. Luke

    No, Susan does have a good point. You can make your own website and take pledges the same way that Kickstarter does; the only point to using a third party service is if there’s a community that might be interested in your project.

  5. david

    I was extremely disappointed with their services. I submitted my project and they didn’t even get back to me – not even a formal decline. My whole submission was just erased as if it never existed. I spent a whole hour filling out my project details and it was very discouraging. I messaged their customer service and they didn’t even respond to my concerns. They just pretty much said to submit the project again and someone will get back to me. I’m NOT going to spend another hour filling this site out. These are my thoughts, and perhaps other people have better experiences. Try Indie gogo or Start Something Good.

  6. Waste of time. Horrible customer service is what Kickstarter is all about. I submitted a project and they sent me back a generic decline without any details. I requested more information and they don’t respond. Their proposal page is vague at best so your not really sure what they are looking for. DON’T WASTE YOUR TIME.

    • your time. You simply can’t epcxet to be productive if you can’t manage your time effectively.Success in both business and personal undertakings will often be traced back to how really good your quire some assistance in how to manage your time more efficiently? What do you do? ManicTime is a

  7. We just launched our project a couple days ago so it’s too early to tell.
    If you enjoy indi-music and want to be a part of making a cool music CD a reality maybe you could help us out?!

    Sorry for the shameless pitch! Thx.

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