Kickstarter Charge

My project partner and I were challenged to do qualitative research and identify opportunities for Kickstarter to expand their market.

Kickstarter Charge was done with Brett Killoran.


Brett Killoran and I conducted a research project for a Design Research and Methodology course. During the span of the two-month project we spoke to 8 Kickstarter creators and developed deep insights into the needs of the base of creators on Kickstarter. After uncovering insights about this user base we developed a product concept that could help grow Kickstarter's market share.

Framing the Space

Immediately there was a need to do extensive secondary research and primary observation of Kickstarter creation. We did in-depth competitive analysis, finding that while there are many crowd funding services, almost none were as complex and comprehensive as Kickstarter. We also developed a visualization of the over arching process of creating a Kickstarter.

Interviews and Need Finding

Once we'd gotten our feet wet we dove into the primary research. We scouted 8 interviewee's, both successful Kickstarter creators and unsuccessful. By reaching out to as many bay area creators as possible we were able to scout our own cohort. In order to get a deep understanding of their experience each time, we created a comprehensive discussion guide and both conducted hour-long interviews. We also conducted participatory design activities.

Findings and Insights

The interviews were enlightening and helped highlight both the good and bad about Kickstarter. When we began to transcribe our interviews and synthesize out notes it became clear that there was a knowledge gap that left less experience Kickstarter creators behind. Our synthesis was rigorous and from the quotes and observations we developed insights.

Our synthesis board and our core insights.

The Concept

Once we understood just how much passion and investment the Kickstarter creators had, it was our challenge to enable them to grow as a group and thus help Kickstarter grow as a business. We designed a mentorship concept and created a video prototype to highlight the value of a Kickstarter mentor. The concept is called Kickstarter Charge.

The project ended after the concept stage with the focus on the story created by the video and the research uncovering new ways for Kickstarter to grow. I conducted many of the research interviews and wrote the discussion guide. I also directed the video and edited it. Brett was responsible for the prototype screens and much of the scouting.

If you have feedback please feel free to email me by clicking below. I'd love to hear your thoughts.