17: Gearing up for Kickstarter

As of writing this the prototype is nearing completion and I am gearing up for Kickstarter. It’s been a difficult project to plan, partially due to Globe being a fairly complex project (as far as Kickstarters go) and also because there’s still a fair bit of development to be done. As with most things, it is an expensive thing to produce in small numbers and becomes a lot cheaper as volume increases, but either way will require a higher than usual funding target for a Kickstarter.

I have been really torn as to how to market Globe; whether to offer a single advanced device which would be more straightforward to manage but would mean that those who aren’t interested in some of the extra features (more housing options etc.) would end up paying more than they wanted, or whether to offer multiple different tiers allowing backers to choose exactly what they wanted. Based off other similar Kickstarter projects splitting into multiple tiers is the way to go.

The three tiers that I propose are:

  • Desktop – 1920×1080 resolution, desktop, veneered oak cladding, laminated glass casing. Essentially the same as the prototype. Aimed at those who are not going to have the device running constantly on public display ~$800
  • Professional – 1920×1080 resolution, full height,  range of cladding options available, pedestal for unit, toughened glass casing. For those who want the unit to sit on display all day, ideal for advertising purposes. ~$1400
  • Artistic – 1920×1080 resolution, full height, customised solid wood/premium metal cladding, pedestal for unit, acoustic glass and sound insulation, customised content. Ideal for those who want to use the device as an artistic piece in locations where ambient noise is minimal. $3000

The main difficulty with doing things this way is that the prototype device is roughly the entry level version with half resolution. It may be difficult for people to visualise some of the features on the higher tier models and decide whether that’s something they are interested in.

The next problem that needed to be overcome was shipping the damn things. Due to being fairly heavy devices, the entry level likely to come in at about 10KG, the pro ~20 and the artistic ~30-40, shipping will not be a simple issue. The simplest and most cost effective option will be to farm it all out to a fulfillment service. Which one(s) I use will depend a lot on how much funding the project receives and where backers are based, so I will wait until after the campaign to make a firm choice on them, but I have tallied up the rough costs of getting things distributed. At the moment the list of countries I will ship to is fairly limited, mostly EU/north America, but if there is popular demand for another country I will certainly look into finding a shipping solution.

The only other consideration are all the various import duties and taxes that would or could be applicable. Because my business will be UK based there will be no import duties for EU orders, but all other other orders will be required to pay whichever import taxes and duties that their country charges.

So that pretty much sums up the last couple of weeks for me, madly trying to plan around all the different logistical realities of making a big old spinney whirley wheel and distributing it around the world. Ideally I will have the Kickstarter go live within a couple of weeks of writing this.


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