How much it will really take to finance a crowdfunded project is something that most Kickstarter users think long and hard about when setting a fundraising goal. But even the most diligent can't foresee the unexpected costs that will eat up an insane amount of money.
It's possible that massive expense can be due to a single typo, as one entrepreneur recently experienced.
In a post on Medium, Cameron Moll, founder of career site Authentic Jobs, offers a truly painfully funny cautionary tale from his latest Kickstarter project.
Moll, a designer, was selling an image of the Brooklyn Bridge made up entirely of type. You can check out the Kickstarter page to get an idea of how he works. That he's clearly a meticulous planner makes the blunder that ensued all the more ironic.
Moll raised more than six times his fundraising goal of $10,000, which he estimated would cover the cost of printing. In reality, he hoped to raise more than his target in order to recoup the money that had previously gone into the project.
In a detailed account, Moll explains how miscellaneous costs like processing fees, shipping costs and temporary help began to chip away at his total sum of money. By the time he shipped the final product, he had $14,996 of $64,597 left.
Then he lost half of that would-be profit to a big mistake.
A backer had written to tell Moll that he loved the poster But did all of the copies accidentally spell Brooklyn as "Brookyln," he asked.
"I thought he was joking. To my amazement and horror, he was not," Moll writes. "Apparently the typo had been in the artwork nearly since day one."
After reprinting and reshipping the copies, at a cost of more than $7,000, Moll was down to a mere $7,923. Finally, after income tax, he realized he had made a 7.6 percent profit -- a tough figure to swallow, he said.
On the bright side, Kickstarter had allowed him to find the backers who sincerely supported his work, and, as a result, they were all very gracious about the typo issue.
Today, Moll is selling the remaining posters. You can now buy the "Corrected version, 'Brooklyn'" online.