Crowdfunding has many advantages. Not least, the ability to bring ideas to life that you might otherwise never have gotten off the ground. Yet it also has its pitfalls.
One of the most crucial to be aware of is that you are exposing your plans and ideas to a large number of people much earlier than you would if you were funding those ideas yourself.
In order to generate the capital you need, you need to convince people you have something worth investing in. While some might blindly place their faith in you, most will want to see some details.
That exposes you to the risk that someone might steal your idea
If they can then produce it faster than you (which is likely as if you could do it fast yourself, you would not be crowdfunding), you will let your funders down and lose the money-winning opportunity you had.
Put IP protection in place early
The first person to claim intellectual property (IP) rights to something usually wins. So someone could see your idea and apply to the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) to patent it, leaving you in the cold.
Patenting an invention does take work, but after you have put so much time and effort into your idea, it would be foolish not to put that extra work in to protect it. If you have a great new idea, seek legal help to guide you through the patent application process. Just make sure you do it before exposing your ideas to the world.