Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Kickstarter & Indiegogo have a Potato Salad problem

By now you've likely heard of, or seen the over funded Potato Salad project on Kickstarter. To everyone's amazement, it not only met its intended goal of raising $10, but went on to raise over $61,000 from over 6000 backers. Cute...and it likely was a phenomenal PR event for Kickstarter, but they now need to be careful that they don't have a Potato Salad problem.

Those who know me, know that I am a huge fan of both of the aforementioned services. I visit them often, and recently I am noting a huge influx of Potato Salad 'like' campaigns.  Not in the literal sense that people are raising money to create a recipe, but more like Cyber begging.  Some want money to fix their car, or to buy something, etc.  While there is nothing wrong with this, both services (and yours!) need to carefully model their UI's and website flow to filter such offerings more selectively. If not, they risk alienating users who search (for example) for technology as a filter, and expect to see technology related campaigns.

If you do not think this can create a huge usability issue for your start up think again.  All you need do is look at every successful service, and how spammers ultimately take away from an otherwise pleasant experience. I not only get this spam in my email inbox, but also as Trolls on Twitter, Bots on Quora,etc. It has gotten so bad on Craigslist, that I rarely am able to search there anymore (Try searching for 'Prius' under cars, and see how users have abused Craigslist by inserting 'Prius' as a keyword into ads that have nothing to do with Prius.)

Is your Startup  experiencing this yet, or perhaps you want to stop it in advance?  Reach out to me, and I will show you how to fix it.

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