Anyone actually produce a physical product

30 replies
most of what I am reading is just exchange of information...repackaged and redistributed. But I am looking for others who are actually selling tangible products offline and have online marketing arm to supplement the offline business. Am I riding solo on this forum?
#physical #produce #product
  • Profile picture of the author sandalwood
    Originally Posted by overtonis View Post

    most of what I am reading is just exchange of information...repackaged and redistributed. But I am looking for others who are actually selling tangible products offline and have online marketing arm to supplement the offline business. Am I riding solo on this forum?
    Not only that but you are riding by yourself...

    Tom
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    • Profile picture of the author ewenmack
      Originally Posted by sandalwood View Post

      Not only that but you are riding by yourself...

      Tom
      Err...I have both so does Claude, probably others do to.

      Claude has a retail store selling vacuum cleaners and does
      video marketing for offline clients.

      I have local stores, and national chain stores, hotels
      which buy receipt paper rolls from me. The other business is bringing in clients for those that service offline businesses, like seo, ppc, reputation management and other internet marketing services.

      Best,
      Ewen
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      • Profile picture of the author sandalwood
        Originally Posted by ewenmack View Post

        Err...I have both so does Claude, probably others do to.

        Claude has a retail store selling vacuum cleaners and does
        video marketing for offline clients.

        I have local stores, and national chain stores, hotels
        which buy receipt paper rolls from me. The other business is bringing in clients for those that service offline businesses, like seo, ppc, reputation management and other internet marketing services.

        Best,
        Ewen
        My bad, but I thought he asked if anyone produced one. I read into that he was asking if anyone was producing a physical product versus selling web design, seo, etc. I know other people sell them on this forum but I don't know anyone who produces them. I sell a product as well but I don't produce it.

        Of course I could be wrong about that too. However, my little mind tells me there is a difference between producing products and selling other's products. Not arguing just telling you what I thought I read.

        Other than that, if I make it down under next year, the beer is still on me (not physically kind sir).

        Tom
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  • Profile picture of the author DaniMc
    I don't develop products but an am Executive In Residence at a large incubator. I help people take products to market regularly. Most, not all, are Venture Funded companies so may be a little different from your product.

    I also have access to several very large distribution networks.

    I suspect there a quite a few people on this forum with knowledge about marketing physical products.
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  • Profile picture of the author misterme
    I'm a photographer, and a graphic artist, so I'm always creating images as product: prints, albums, image boxes, wall prints, collages, cards, web files, the like. Of course, this is a great ability to have because I can also create any graphic I want for my own business purposes, like any brochure, cards, web images, blog images, banner ads, image ads, facebook covers, you name it.
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  • Profile picture of the author Chr
    Excellent question. I sell physical products on the side, but as far as produce one...no.

    Would like to do that sometime if I thought of an adequate idea.
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    • Profile picture of the author overtonis
      I brought question up so those of us producing physical products can share some marketing techniques (offline and also via blogs, ecommerce). I have a friend who jokes that soon America is just gonna be bunch of sales men selling each other insurance. Its time to bring manufacturing back to USA in some capacity and reclaim some leverage again internationally.
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  • Profile picture of the author Inferno272
    I have a retail location as well as an online site to support it. I do all my testing for online marketing techniques on affiliate sites, and when I find something that woks, i use it on my main "money" site.

    best advice i can give to any retailer. NEVER test on your site.
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  • Profile picture of the author Dr Boom
    I produced a product, I still have it but I don't think I marketed it very well.

    Might look to sort a joint venture with someone to sell it / market it better than I did.
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  • Profile picture of the author ClayWhite
    Believe it or not but I've actually created a line of Organic Granola Bars. I created the recipe/formula, the packaging design, and all of the marketing materials. The manufacturing of the bar is done through another company (this is called Co-Packing or contract packaging). The manufacture is in the US and no materials or ingredients are sourced overseas. I to want to bring manufacturing back to the US!!

    I have put this on hold for now because of the cost of running a business like this. Once I've secured a good amount of funds I'll continue with this brand and hopefully get it into stores one day. This business has already cost me $10,000 and I have yet to put anything on the shelf's. This is due to not having any money to produce enough inventory to satisfy any type of retail order. R&D is expensive!!

    While working this business and learning about online and offline marketing I have started a few other businesses that are just now starting to pay me back. A lot of the information I have gathered was from right here on the Warrior Forum. These profits will go right into my Granola business.

    I hope to launch my "physical" product summer of 2013.



    Overtonis - If you would like to chat about some offline marketing I would love to keep this thread going.
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    • Profile picture of the author DaniMc
      Originally Posted by ClayWhite View Post

      Believe it or not but I've actually created a line of Organic Granola Bars. I created the recipe/formula, the packaging design, and all of the marketing materials. The manufacturing of the bar is done through another company (this is called Co-Packing or contract packaging). The manufacture is in the US and no materials or ingredients are sourced overseas. I to want to bring manufacturing back to the US!!

      I have put this on hold for now because of the cost of running a business like this. Once I've secured a good amount of funds I'll continue with this brand and hopefully get it into stores one day. This business has already cost me $10,000 and I have yet to put anything on the shelf's. This is due to not having any money to produce enough inventory to satisfy any type of retail order. R&D is expensive!!

      While working this business and learning about online and offline marketing I have started a few other businesses that are just now starting to pay me back. A lot of the information I have gathered was from right here on the Warrior Forum. These profits will go right into my Granola business.

      I hope to launch my "physical" product summer of 2013.



      Overtonis - If you would like to chat about some offline marketing I would love to keep this thread going.
      Clay, I can help get your product national distribution. I can even connect you to ways you can put the money together to scale up.

      Send me a PM. This could happen a LOT faster than you think.
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      • Profile picture of the author ClayWhite
        Originally Posted by Dan McCoy View Post

        Clay, I can help get your product national distribution. I can even connect you to ways you can put the money together to scale up.

        Send me a PM. This could happen a LOT faster than you think.
        Hey Dan - I'm interesting in talking with you but I can not PM until 50 posts... and this makes 41 Send me a PM with your email and we can talk further.

        Thanks.
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        • Profile picture of the author DaniMc
          Originally Posted by ClayWhite View Post

          Hey Dan - I'm interesting in talking with you but I can not PM until 50 posts... and this makes 41 Send me a PM with your email and we can talk further.

          Thanks.
          Just sent you a PM.
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    • Profile picture of the author overtonis
      Originally Posted by ClayWhite View Post

      Believe it or not but I've actually created a line of Organic Granola Bars. I created the recipe/formula, the packaging design, and all of the marketing materials. The manufacturing of the bar is done through another company (this is called Co-Packing or contract packaging). The manufacture is in the US and no materials or ingredients are sourced overseas. I to want to bring manufacturing back to the US!!

      I have put this on hold for now because of the cost of running a business like this. Once I've secured a good amount of funds I'll continue with this brand and hopefully get it into stores one day. This business has already cost me $10,000 and I have yet to put anything on the shelf's. This is due to not having any money to produce enough inventory to satisfy any type of retail order. R&D is expensive!!

      While working this business and learning about online and offline marketing I have started a few other businesses that are just now starting to pay me back. A lot of the information I have gathered was from right here on the Warrior Forum. These profits will go right into my Granola business.

      I hope to launch my "physical" product summer of 2013.



      Overtonis - If you would like to chat about some offline marketing I would love to keep this thread going.
      Clay this is exactly what I was hoping someone would respond to. I also agree if America has any chance of competing on global level in future it will have to re-establish manufacturing again on some level. We are approaching a similar hurtle soon. Our products are selling on facebook both in US and into Vietnam (where my wife is from). Our next step is to start approaching stores. The process is way more difficult that we anticipate and that could explain why so many don't take this route. Just getting the labels to look right and printed took several months.

      Our total cost to-date is about $5,000. We basically started selling in mid October and have made back $1,700 since then with basically minimal sales to our main webpage. Last week I just started with Twitter and purchased Bufferapp ($10 month) that allows to me to schedule tweets onto Twitter, Facebook & Linkedin (thats been huge help). Next project is to start Tumblr blog page since tumblr is now only behind facebook and growing quickly. Last month we started Etsy store but have yet to generate sales yet. We also sell on ebay and had few sales. We are trying to leave no stone un-turned. We are also going to buy copywriter to help with our site and try to focus more on the 'why's of someone would buy the product. How it will improve their life...make life more satisfying.

      Clay or anyone else who has attempted this - would love to hear more about your adventure/process.

      Thanks
      Carl
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  • Profile picture of the author Johnlang
    I have found it easier to do online marketing than offline marketing. Typically services are the best if you are doing an offline service
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    • Profile picture of the author ClayWhite
      Originally Posted by Johnlang View Post

      I have found it easier to do online marketing than offline marketing. Typically services are the best if you are doing an offline service
      Really depends on the market and your product. But a good mix of both is where ALL businesses need to be.

      Take for example what happened to me today: My kid wanted to go to this trampoline place that just opened and we only knew about it because it is right across the street from us. No marketing was done in the news paper, no flyers to the surrounding area, nothing!

      But still we knew about it and wanted to go. So I wanted to call them and find out their prices and hours... looked online at yellowpages.com... bad number (i think it was a fax number)... Googled the website... bad links...

      If this place would have had some type of online or offline marketing in place i would not of been so pissed off by the time I found their number. And most people would have just given up.

      The place was dead! and they just opened up last week and kids are out of school now... bad, bad, bad marketing mr.manager!

      PS- I'll be talking to the manager this weekend to offer some marketing services

      But anyways... Both is needed, but i personally think offline marketing is WAY easier to set up.
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  • Profile picture of the author davidreese
    I offer a service. One business is improv shows, classes, and training. The other is distribution of marketing materials for small businesses and event producers.

    I use online and offline marketing. I generally find offline marketing more consistent and less cluttered.
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  • Profile picture of the author thejayrow
    Originally Posted by overtonis View Post

    most of what I am reading is just exchange of information...repackaged and redistributed. But I am looking for others who are actually selling tangible products offline and have online marketing arm to supplement the offline business. Am I riding solo on this forum?
    A few years back I designed a rechargeable battery pack system, raised private financing, and had them mass produced in China.

    Right now I'm currently in the process of having a CAD designer build an idea I had. Once I make a prototype, I will look at manufacturing the product as well.

    I live in Canada tho. Trust me, it would warm my heart to have my stuff made here or in the U.S. but its just impossible. my products aren't totally 100% unique, but usually new improvements on poor designs.

    If I ever come up with something nobody has ever thought of, and cannot replicate, and has no value set in the marketplace yet, then I could look at manufacturing locally and setting prices at a point where everyone wins. But until that day... I play by the rules.
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  • Profile picture of the author OnlineStoreHelp
    I have several drop shipping websites that sell everything from coffee, to lingerie to iphone cases. But I got into all of this when I had to figure out how to make a website for a travel folio I designed and had manufactured. It gets easier every year to do it but getting into retail stores is tough with a single product though!
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  • Profile picture of the author srodoks
    I have found it easier to do online marketing than offline marketing. Typically services are the best if you are doing an offline service
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    • Profile picture of the author DaniMc
      Originally Posted by overtonis View Post

      Clay this is exactly what I was hoping someone would respond to. I also agree if America has any chance of competing on global level in future it will have to re-establish manufacturing again on some level. We are approaching a similar hurtle soon. Our products are selling on facebook both in US and into Vietnam (where my wife is from). Our next step is to start approaching stores. The process is way more difficult that we anticipate and that could explain why so many don't take this route. Just getting the labels to look right and printed took several months.
      The biggest hurdle that product creators have is lack of a sales force. If you don't have shoe leather out there promoting your product, you can't get it into the stores. Even if you do get it into one or two stores at a time, you can never get enough traction to actually move product. Combine that with all the other things you have to handle and...whew! Forget about large scale distribution.

      It's tough to be in the shoes of a product creator. This is your baby and you want everything to go just right. Then you have distributors who will take your cash and let your product sit in the warehouse or if they do put it in stores, it's in a terrible location.

      When you go get the accounts yourself, it is almost impossible to manage. For example, how do you know if the store owner is actually displaying your product in a good location? That eye-level middle-of-the-shelf space is very valuable. When our reps place products, we follow up and make sure the display is at the front of the store where we can really judge the demand.

      Right now we have about 60,000 retail accounts. There are so many different types of locations and demographics that for the product creator trying to go at this alone it is almost impossible.

      People coming into the store know nothing about your product and if it is sitting in the back, nobody will buy it. It doesn't matter if you are selling pound of gold for $10, nobody will know about it.
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      • Profile picture of the author BRDesign
        I'm a Graphic Designer, I sell business cards, post cards, and other printed materials along with my design services. I also design and build custom signs, and I do screen printing of tshirts.
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      • Profile picture of the author overtonis
        Originally Posted by Dan McCoy View Post

        The biggest hurdle that product creators have is lack of a sales force. If you don't have shoe leather out there promoting your product, you can't get it into the stores. Even if you do get it into one or two stores at a time, you can never get enough traction to actually move product. Combine that with all the other things you have to handle and...whew! Forget about large scale distribution.

        It's tough to be in the shoes of a product creator. This is your baby and you want everything to go just right. Then you have distributors who will take your cash and let your product sit in the warehouse or if they do put it in stores, it's in a terrible location.

        When you go get the accounts yourself, it is almost impossible to manage. For example, how do you know if the store owner is actually displaying your product in a good location? That eye-level middle-of-the-shelf space is very valuable. When our reps place products, we follow up and make sure the display is at the front of the store where we can really judge the demand.

        Right now we have about 60,000 retail accounts. There are so many different types of locations and demographics that for the product creator trying to go at this alone it is almost impossible.

        People coming into the store know nothing about your product and if it is sitting in the back, nobody will buy it. It doesn't matter if you are selling pound of gold for $10, nobody will know about it.
        thats why we think the direction to go is very heavy web influence thru social media initially. It levels the playing field against large companies because it really is about engagement and customer service. We give customer service no large corporation could possibly give because its one-on-one and all thru instant messaging on facebook. Also, I have been told you need to hit large trade shows in NY to get product into those retail stores. Just walking into store by store trying to get your product on shelf seems wasteful.

        Also I think its really important to look outside of the US. The US market is so over-saturated with products and information that now is time to get into those countries who are just now experiencing growth (asian markets). In 50 years the global power base will be in east asia not america. I visited China and Vietnam for month and I can say first hand......they love america product. They try to copy everything about our economy/products. But they do a horrible job at it. 70% of our sales are to china & vietnam. Those markets are hungry for American name/product to be delivered with promise that is authentic. Singapore is interesting place and one we are presently looking at because 20% of their population are millionares.
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        • Profile picture of the author overtonis
          wanted to give this thread an update. We are still chugging along. Our Vietnamese customer base has expanded. Traction in america has been slower but we haven't start to advertise yet just using social media for getting word out. Adding sales reps has been challenge. Sales have doubled each month for 6 consecutive months. Advertising goals are as follows:

          1. Start Facebook advertising - start with 'like' campaigns and also try to direct to our email opt-in page (https://www.facebook.com/GUUKYcosmetics).

          2. Undecided on Google or Bing. Bing has higher female audience but Google is still beast. Considering hiring social media advertising firm who specializes in our niche (clean cosmetics) for search engine advertising.

          3. Hiring more Sales Reps - if there is one thing I have learned in business its not to waste alot of time on small fish. Instead really focus on your power brokers. Spent alot of time trying to train sales reps who really didn't either have the drive or personality to do it. Then we can across few powerful people on social media who had lots of friends and were highly motivated. They were selling more in one month than rest of our sales force did in 4-5 months. Find your power people and take care of them. We still need to find better way of expanding our sales force and I am not big fan of MLM.

          4. Getting into the Spas/Salons. This looks to be key in USA. I have studied several very successful cosmetics companies who don't even have stores. Rather they have targeted high end Spas/Salons in NYC area and got their products into those places. Gave them instant recognition and few were endorsed by celebrities that really let those business take off.

          Side note: Facebook is king for international sales. Its the only social media they use and its not look down on to market and sell your product there. The page has to be in their native language though.

          I would like to hear from you if you have expertise in area mentioned above or simply have question for me about business. ty
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    • Profile picture of the author SteveJo
      Originally Posted by srodoks View Post

      I have found it easier to do online marketing than offline marketing. Typically services are the best if you are doing an offline service
      But we cannot generalize that. Offline marketing way more effort. Time is money, you waste, you lose. Had offline marketing fetched more money, it would have been a different case. I have tasted success with online marketing
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  • Profile picture of the author Opeleroy
    My first foray into marketing online was a physical product; a book for athletes that was self-published.

    While the margins aren't as nice as digital products, the satisfaction that comes with creating, producing and delivering actual physical goods is hard to beat.

    And as DavidReese mentioned, it's less cluttered.
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    Boom.

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  • Profile picture of the author DarrenRM
    I'm a graphic illustrator and produce custom canvases for local people. I've been creating hand painted canvases of famous people, musicians etc.

    It's a side gig with crap margins, but i'm getting my costs down, making the art faster and looking to price it higher once i find the right clientele

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  • Profile picture of the author sadneck
    Originally Posted by overtonis View Post

    most of what I am reading is just exchange of information...repackaged and redistributed. But I am looking for others who are actually selling tangible products offline and have online marketing arm to supplement the offline business. Am I riding solo on this forum?

    What is your physcial product? I am very interested in this, please PM me!

    Andrew
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