December 28, 2012
Based on yesterday’s post, you might be thinking about pulling together your own Kickstarter to fund your business dreams. Even if you’ve followed all of the tips Intrigue Chocolates shared with us based on their experiences, there’s one other equally important tip to mention. What if your Kickstarter campaign is more successful than you had even dared to hope?
Sounds like a good problem to have, right? Except for one little thing…now you have to fulfill all those orders.
Granted, the pledges aren’t really “orders” per say (even Kickstarter noted on their blog that Kickstarter is not a “store” ) but that doesn’t stop people from “shopping” Kickstarter and expecting to get tangible items in return. Which means if you haven’t figured out the fulfillment side of the equation before your Kickstarter goes live you could be setting yourself up for a world of hurt if you aren’t able to meet the deadlines you’ve laid out in the Kickstarter project overview.
CNN Money recently published a great article about Kickstarter projects and they found that 84% of Kickstarter’s top projects – the ones that far exceeded the goals laid out by the entrepreneurs – shipped late. Much of the time, the article points out, this is due to the fact that the entrepreneurs literally could not keep up with the demand.
Not only is this poor customer service, but it’s poor customer service to a group of early adopters – the type of folks who like to share new product/small company finds with their friends and family (and social media). However, these people will just as quickly share their stories of poor customer service with their friends and family (and social media) as well. In a nutshell, these are your most sought-after customers and they’ve essentially pre-paid you for a product they expect to receive on time. So make sure that you’ve figured that piece of the equation out before you try crowd funding. The last thing you want is the crowd to turn against you.