We reckon we are pretty plugged in when it comes to new trends in b2b and b2c marketing and we are all witnessing the emergence of a complete change in the way that companies do business. Just today, we came across one of the best examples of how this change is happening right now.
Ladies and gentlemen, allow us to introduce the LunaTik iPod nano watch.
A well established designer, who has credits for designing the likes of the Xbox 360 Slim and the Kinect, wants to raise some capital and evaluate demand for a new product which effectively transforms the 6th generation iPod nano into a very funky multi-touch watch. Traditionally, you do the market research to find out what the customer wants, approach the bank or investors, put up some collateral, get the cash, reduce the cost of production and probably undermine the product quality and then find retailers and distributors to promote, merchandise and ship the product. If you fail at any point in the cycle, you lose your cash. If your supplier lets you down, you lose your cash. If the product fails, you lose your house. If the product is a hit, you lose a large proportion of your company and the profits go to the investors a la Dragon’s Den. Need I go on.
Enter Scott Wilson of MINIMAL, a design company based in Chicago. Using KickStarter as a crowdsourcing platform, Scott demonstrated a prototype of their design for the ultimate watch, using an iPod nano and offered customers an early discount if they backed the project. Within an hour it was picked up in the social ecosystem. Within 3 hours, the $15k initial pledge total was hit. By the end of the first 24 hours, they obliterated the target and reached $100k, 3 days later incredibly the total was more than $200k. What is most remarkable is that if you are reading this today, the 23rd November 2010, only 6 days later, the total is more than $300k and still rising rapidly and you can still pledge for the next 23 days!
Who knows what the total will be by the closing date of 16th December 2010? Bearing in mind the viral nature of the social ecosystem, it is almost impossible to predict. What is fascinating about this is that it completely removes the middle men. Market research, demand generation, marketing, funding and production have all been completed in a single step, based entirely on the reputation of the designer and the desire for the product. This is also true of many of the other platforms which are now using the internet for its original purpose – Collective Intelligence.
We’ll be checking back on the progress of the LunaTik over the next few weeks. Now where’s my credit card…Share