New England Toy
New England Toy

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News & Notes

News & Notes

 

An Insider’s Guide: 3 Things to Know about Kickstarter

Kickstarter is an incredibly powerful site with the ability to help businesses turn ideas into funded products. While the Pebble Smartwatchand the Ouya Game Console may be two of the most famous projects in the site’s history did you also know that hundreds of plush toys and collectibles land on Kickstarter every year? We’ve helped several of those projects through to completion and have learned a bit along the way. Here are three things we’ve learned about Kickstarter campaigns over the years.

1. Kickstarter is not square one.

Kickstarter is not your square one. In fact, a Kickstarter campaign occurs far later in the development process than most people realize. Kickstarter (and its users) require a bevy of information before you can add your project to the site. This includes pricing information, drawings, technical schematics and a delivery timetable. Each of these elements requires hours upon hours of research and development.

Since we help brands turn ideas from drawings to prototypes to the finish product all the time we are able to help our Kickstarter clients with these initial steps as well. We put our experience to work to ensure the project meets all the necessary benchmarks to meet Kickstarter’s criteria to make it on the site.

2. You need the ability to scale quickly.

You need to plan for everything on Kickstarter. If you're hoping for 3,000 backers (orders) and you receive 6,000 backers instead, are you prepared for that?

New England Toy is accustomed to filling thousand piece orders regularly. Whether you need 1,000, 10,000 or 100,000 units, we have the experience to help you scale. Since a Kickstarter campaign typically lasts longer than a few weeks, we can easily work with our manufacturing partners to increase the number of toys you need for your order.

3. Have you thought about shipping?

The toy itself is the fun part. The logistics of filling and shipping orders is decidedly less so. Even if your brand ships internationally, have you ever shipped so many units at once? Dealing with logistics from container ships to customs can be a harrowing experience.

We’ve handled the logistics of shipping internationally for our clients for 10 years so we’ve encountered these hurdles and learned how to avoid potentially costly surprises. Our existing distribution network allows us to ship globally. If you have never dealt with international logistics before you should work with a partner who has.

If you’ve got an idea for a unique, custom plush toy or collectible and want to use Kickstarter to develop your project, go for it – it’s a great tool. But if this is your first venture of this type make sure you go in prepared.

Josh Livingston