5 Things Every Backer Should Know About Kickstarter

5 Things Every Backer Should Know About Kickstarter - 8/6/19

Many of my coworkers are avid hunters. They always talk about what tags they got this year, how many points their bucks were worth, etc. They could spend hours talking about hunting if you allowed them to because it is familiar territory for them. However, during many of those conversations I always feel lost as I’ve personally never been hunting. So, what does this have to do with Kickstarter?

As I have developed Queen Bee many of the friends and family that I have played it with have enjoyed it and have asked the question, “how do I buy this game?” To this I reply that the game will come out on Kickstarter soon and they can buy it there. People in the gaming community understand what that means but to many this is unfamiliar territory. So to those people who want to support Queen Bee, or any other Kickstarter project for that matter, here are five things that every creator wants to teach their supporters.

  1. Kickstarter doesn’t take your money when you pledge. Anybody who has ever purchased anything online understands that your account is almost immediately charged when you hit the purchase button. That is what we have gotten use to. However, with Kickstarter your account doesn’t get charged when you “purchase” or “pledge” to a campaign. Each campaign is run for a specific number of days - usually somewhere between 24 - 31 days. When that countdown concludes then your money gets pulled from your account if the project is successful (meaning that it reaches its funding goal). However, if the project is unsuccessful then your money is never taken. So, do you need the money in your bank account when you make a pledge - No! But you do need it in your bank account when the campaign ends.

  2. The biggest help that you can give to a Kickstarter creator may not be by a financial contribution. Have you ever purchased a candy bar to support a local little league player? Have you ever coached a little league team or umpired a little league game? Which one do you think is more valuable to the little league? Kickstarter can be the same way in many regards. Perhaps what I’m offering on Kickstarter isn’t something that you would ever want or use. I’d certainly love the financial support - but maybe you know someone that I don’t that would totally dig my project. Sharing a project with your network of people, especially accompanied with a comment as to why you shared it, is much more valuable to helping a campaign than by a financial contribution.

  3. Kickstarter is all about momentum - be there on the first day. Kickstarter campaigns can often succeed because of the “bandwagon” idea. If people see that other people are supporting a project then they might want to support it too. The success of any Kickstarter campaign is strongly correlated with the success of its first two days. As I mentioned above, your contribution doesn’t get pulled from your bank account until the campaign closes. Pledging on the first day shows others that the project has a following, and that it has support. This will attract more people to the project especially as stretch goals get revealed and unlocked. Pledging on the first day also helps the project move up on Kickstarters page and on Kicktraq’s (a website that tracks crowdfunding projects) list.

  4. Projects often upgrade in quality through its stretch goals. “Stretch goals” is a Kickstarter term that allows project creators to increase the quality of their product based on anticipated funds. A project may have a goal to raise $20,000. That funding goal, if achieved, allows the product to be made. However, if that same project reaches $40,000 (200% of its goal) then you would get the same product but at a much higher quality. In the gaming industry some common upgrades are higher quality cards, linen finishes to boards, upgraded player tokens or other components. So the more momentum a project can get in the beginning then the more likely that the end product will be much better.

  5. Be an active backer. The project’s creator has spent an incredible amount of time (hopefully) creating their project. Not only that, but they have spent countless hours (hopefully) making sure the product works the way that it should. Hitting the like button on an update or typing in a comment or two in the comments section of the campaign lets the project creator know that someone out there is listening. It also gets exciting when a project supporter (backer) becomes an ambassador and helps address people’s comments. Keeping an active conversation about the campaign is visually appealing to potential backers and also helps boost the projects visibility on the Kickstarter site.

There are many other things that project creators could teach you about Kickstarter, but those mentioned above are my top 5. Hopefully, you will employ those five things the next time you want to support a Kickstarter campaign.