Friday, March 27, 2015
Just as their names implies, the Quickstarter people are quick. In fact, the team at Mercyhurst University is set to launch three new campaigns next month for the following products: customizable laser-cut rolling pins for children; a comic book series about a vigilante based in a city like Erie; and a coffee business that allows customers to create their perfect cup of coffee as well as its name and logo.
Mercyhurst’s Kristan Wheaton, J.D., an associate professor of intelligence studies, originated Quickstarter, which essentially is his strategic plan for conducting entrepreneurial business campaigns via online crowd-funding platforms including the most popular, Kickstarter. He employs Mercyhurst students, who gain hands-on experience in launching fundraising campaigns to support local entrepreneurs.
Wheaton’s strategies are rooted in building awareness for the entrepreneur’s idea, product or business before launching their Kickstarter campaign. To do that, he uses Facebook and other social media such as Twitter and Pinterest.
The Humble Elephant, Moros: the Hard-Boiled Hero, and Roast Assured campaigns are set to make their Kickstarter debut on April 8. Until then, you can check them out on Facebook.
Humble Elephant makes custom laser-engraved rolling pins for use by both bakeries and serious amateur chefs. Owner Lisa Van Riper is launching her Kickstarter campaign to move her product line into laser engraved children’s rolling pins as well. Suitable for little hands, with kid-friendly engravings, the pins are durable enough for use in the playroom or the kitchen.
Moros: A hard-boiled hero
Moros is a gritty comic book written by Erie’s Josh Lucas. The comic is set in the fictional Bay City, which is swamped by mobsters who carry a new drug called “Juice” that is sweeping the streets, causing mayhem. Moros is a detective who sets out to save his city in any way possible.
Roast Assured is a spin-off from the popular Fairview coffee house, Out of The Grey. Owner and master coffee roaster, Jack Barton, wants to use Kickstarter as a way to allow people all over the world to create their perfect cup of coffee. This includes the type of bean, roast, flavoring, spices and grind. Barton wants to take this process one step further, however, and give his customers the opportunity to name their coffee and even work with artists to design logos for it.
Collectively the three products have generated more than 4,000 Facebook likes.
Mercyhurst senior Hannah Corton is serving as the project manager on the Roast Assured and Moros projects. She is supported by students Brent Clapper and Meghan Hardy. Joe Gargano is project manager for Humble Elephant and he is being assisted by Bryan Lossie.
“Quickstarter is a great opportunity for entrepreneurs in the Erie region who need funds to launch their ideas and potentially turn those ideas into businesses,” Wheaton said. “The more successes we can generate through Quickstarter, the better opportunity we have to produce a culture change for Erie as an idea hub.”