Sometimes all you need is a little bit of seed capital to get things going. That’s the idea behind recently launched funding platform Kickstarter.com, made for creative entrepreneurs. Artists, designers, filmmakers, musicians, journalists, inventors, bloggers, and explorers are invited to submit a new project idea, and ask for monetary pledge.
What’s different about this service is the way the quid pro quo works. Creators get to keep ownership of their end product. So what’s in it for funders other than goodwill and a feelgood feeling? Project creators offer products, services and other benefits/rewards to inspire people to support their project.
For example, the recently funded Kind of Bloop: An 8-Bit Tribute to Miles Davis. The project, created by Waxy.org's Andy Baio, was looking to bring together notable chiptune artists and recreate Miles Davis's "Kind of Blue" album with an 8-bit sound. The project raised over $5,700, surpassing the $2,000 goal. Besides being an interesting idea, the project offered advance access to the album, behind the scenes updates, limited edition CDs, and more to donators. People who pledge also receive access to all project updates in the form of a blog, so that they can help as concept turns into reality, providing helpful tips and guidance.
A project must reach its funding goal before the creator receives any funds, however. This encourages project creators to spread the word, and only follow through on concepts that receive the right amount of funding. Check out other projects on their way to meeting their funding goals: Fruit Slinger: From farm to market and Givabit: Introducing Phonelanthropy. Kickstarter is in startup mode itself, and the opportunity to submit is currently invite-only, but you can sign up to learn when the site is open to all creative thinkers looking for a kickstart.