In thinking about crowdfunding, a topic I have considered is looking at things to watch out for that I haven’t covered. For backers, two (2) things come to mind. First, always expect any campaign you pledge will be funded regardless of how far away it is to being funded or how little time remains in the campaign. A great example is a campaign I mention in Gaming Sunday January 27, 2019.
DNA of the Greatest Warriors in History Kickstarter: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/altavilla/dna-of-the-greatest-warriors-in-history – not gaming related although an argument could be made that warriors are RPG and Wargaming related. Goal (all or nothing): Campaign ended: Amazingly this project was funded since November 24, 2018, it was a long way from getting funded:
Here’s a good projection of how it turned around: https://www.kicktraq.com/projects/altavilla/dna-history-opening-a-tomb-of-four-great-warriors/#chart-exp-projection – click on the tabs to see different aspects.
As of December 2, 2018: project ended:
NOK 103,358 pledged of NOK 100,000 goal
compared to November 24, 2018:$2,562 pledged of $11,941 goal (these amounts change even when no additional pledges are added depending on the exchange rate)
16 backers (as of November 24, 2018)
with end date of December 2, 2018.
The second thing for backers is indirectly tied to the first thing. Don’t pledge more than you can afford. Imagine if any of the backers in the above campaign pledged more than they could afford thinking it would fail. I recently saw a campaign succeed on the last day. It was around $463 short on the last day of the campaign and it received almost $500 in pledges on the last day. In this case, I figured it was going to be a squeaker that had a chance of getting funded, but could have easily missed funding by a small amount.
For creators, my suggestion is avoid going to the crowdfunding well too many times. I see some companies and creators doing campaigns on a very regular basis. It’s like as soon as they finish one campaign, they almost immediately start another one. You get backer burnout going this route. In my opinion, more than a couple of times per year, 3 – 4 maximum, is risking losing your base. Even if you don’t lose your base, you will put your base in the position of picking and choosing which campaigns to back. One workaround that may happen occurs when you get a successful campaign that exceeds your goals by a large margin. In one case, a company uses two (2) different accounts to create campaigns. I won’t out the company, but if you are familiar with the company, you would know it’s the same company. They brand them as separate companies, but it’s one company. In this case, they had a goal of $20,000 for one campaign and hit over $314,000 in pledges. Allowing for 1 – 5% failure rate, they still hit over 1,560%+ of the goal. I don’t know what they did with all the extra money above whatever additional costs for stretch goals, but they should have used it to fund some of the other campaigns that they added for both companies as those campaigns were small enough to be absorbed by the influx of cash from the one campaign.
Avoid bringing your personal politics into crowdfunding campaigns that aren’t about politics. I saw this happen in campaigns where some creators decided to add their political views into crowdfunding campaigns that had nothing to do with real-world politics. End result, they lost the support of a significant number of potential backers who might have backed their campaigns had they left the biases out. In some cases, this will lead to your crowdfunding campaign failing because the small percentage of new backers you gain is outweighed by the much larger percentage of backers who won’t back your campaign, including those who backers who are neutral on an issue. In an all-or-nothing campaign like Kickstarter and some other crowdfunding sites offer, it’s not worth the risk. You are entitled to your political opinions, but you need to recognize there are times when your views do more to hurt your crowdfunding efforts than they do to help.