Top 5 Sites To Bring Your Ideas to Life

Have you ever felt like you had an idea for the next big thing, but no way to see it through? Inventions and creative projects require time, planning, expertise and money. You might have loads of the first three, but if you don’t have the last one then your idea will never become a reality. Or worse, someone else will do it first. But that doesn’t have to be the case because there are some great websites that can help you take your ideas to the next level. Check out these 5 great sites that can help bring your ideas to life.
Kickstarter.jpgKickstarter
Like the name implies, Kickstarteris a great place for creative people to kickstart their projects. Since its launch in 2009 the site has helped fund thousands of new products and projects. Kickstarter is ideal for inventors, artists or anyone creative. Projects relating to art, design, film and technology tend to succeed.

How it works:
Kickstarter uses an “all or nothing” model of crowd funding. So if a project’s goals aren’t met then money never changes hands, which minimizes risk for all parties. Each fundraising page has a video, a goal and a deadline. Backers are given rewards based on their contribution, which can be anything from a credit on the company’s website to a prototype of a product.

Success Story:
The creators of Coffee Joulies raised $306,944 (about 32 times their original goal) on Kickstarter. Because they raised so much money they were able to manufacture their product in the USA.
Lucky-Ant.jpgLucky Ant
Lucky Ant puts a hyper local spin on crowd funding by focusing on local businesses. Every week the site features a small business that needs money in order to expand or offer new services. The idea is that by supporting local businesses, people are investing in their own neighborhood. Currently Lucky Ant on serves New York City.
How it works:
Similar to Kickstarter, Lucky Ant campaigns each have a goal and a deadline. Business owners can also offer rewards for different pledge amounts, such as free products or services.

Success Story:

Manhattan based fitness studio, Bari raised $5,000 in order to trademark their unique workout program. Without funding the owners had no way to protect their brand, but now, who knows–Bari may become the next P90X or Zumba.

Quirky.jpgQuirky
Unlike crowd funding sites, Quirky doesn’t help fund good ideas–they actualize them. Anyone with an idea for a product can post it on Quirky for a chance to turn it into a reality.

How it works:
Anyone can post an idea, which then gets evaluated for 30 days by the Quirky community. Behind the scenes, the site is constantly tracking which ideas are the most popular. If the Quirky staff finds a popular product that they think might actually succeed, they’ll mark it “under consideration.” Every week at least 2 ideas are chosen to go into production. Ideas that aren’t chosen can be resubmitted to Quirky or taken elsewhere.
RocketHub.jpgRocketHub
RocketHub sets themselves apart by offering two distinct services, FuelPad and LaunchPad. In the FuelPad section of the site users can seek crowd funding for their projects. In the LaunchPad section creative folks can throw their hat in the ring for a chance to win an incredible opportunity.
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How it works:

The FuelPad works a bit like Kickstarter. However, rather than employing an “all or nothing” model RocketHub lets you keep all of the money you raise regardless of your goal. The LaunchPad section features auditions for great opportunities. Creative people can submit their case for why they should be chosen for a specific opportunity. A panel of judges review each submission, fans vote on their favorite submissions, and a winner is chosen. Past opportunities include spending a week making music at the Gibson Music Retreat and working with famous publicist Arien Rozelle.

Success Story:

While most people use RocketHub to fuel a creative project, the creative team behind the web series Extra Credits asked their fans to help pay for surgery for one of their teammates. Their original goal was $15,000 but they raised nearly 7 times that amount. Thanks to the overflow the Extra Credits team now plans to support indie game developers.

IndieGoGo.jpgIndieGoGo
Unlike some other crowd funding sites, pretty much anything goes on IndieGoGo. You’ll find everything from creative projects to people who need help paying for medical treatment. Since the site was started in 2008 it has helped raise millions of dollars across 60,000 campaigns.
How it works:
Anyone can start a campaign, whether it’s for a cause, a business or a project. Each project has a goal and a deadline, but the creator can keep the funds even if their goal isn’t met. Different contribution amounts often can come with different perks, like hand written thank you cards or a product.
Success Story:
The creators of the eMAKER Huxley 3D printer raised $158,685, exceeding their goal by almost $130,000. Thanks to their success on IndieGoGo, they were able to develop innovative open source 3D printers and make them available to the mass market at a reasonable price.
Did we miss any great sites that help you get an idea off the ground? Tell us in the comments.
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