It’s a nice day for one last run. But what is better than a nice day? A day in which you get to add a dash of your own personal flair to your running gear.
A good example of this is the sportswear company Under Armour (UA). They have been doing it for years, and they are still doing it today. They make the best quality products for runners, but they also make great products for other people too. For instance, UA makes outdoor jackets and parkas that are both highly functional and also look very stylish. They have been doing it for years, and they will continue to do it well into the future too. We’re just going to look at their current range now though.
Benefits of dolled up products
This is probably some of the most popular post on this blog, and I’m surprised by it. It’s probably the most common bugaboo for startups trying to launch products on a small budget:
“How can I afford to launch my product?”
The answer is simple. When you buy a dolled up product, you get:
• The chance to advertise
• The chance to engage with people who will buy your product (they are your beta testers)
• The chance to influence your beta testers (they are your customers) – they are the ones that will come back after your app goes live and tell their friends how much they love it
In other words, you get what you pay for. The value of the dolled up product is in the way it makes you look as though you have spent a lot of money: more than in-house development would normally cost, but not so much that it can’t be justified (not only because there will be no intangibles like complexity or time). And with this kind of marketing, you don’t need any other sales channel – just a good story and hype. You sell yourself. You get access to their attention and influence them while they are still considering buying your product. This is why many Kickstarter projects fail: they want their money upfront without having to convince anyone else first. And yet this is exactly what we do here at RedPonch – we charge upfront and we convince people who want our product right away – without having any intention of paying us back later on down the road either.
Ultimately, what matters is that no matter how much money you spend on marketing, or how well-done your marketing strategy might be; if nobody cares about what you have to say about it, then nobody cares about listening to you either. “But…but…you can make money! You can make lots of money!” Yeah, if it works for someone else that should work for me too! But there are plenty of ways in which marketing can turn out badly: from getting no traction at all due to being too expensive (which happens), being ignored altogether due to being too cheap (which happens), or from being too late when none of the other channels have reached enough incremental sales yet (which also happens). It may seem hard for some people (including myself) because at least some products seem so badly done compared with
Defining dolled up products
The term “dolled up product” was coined by David Heinemeier Hansson to describe products that are a cut above what consumers expect from other products. The term was first used in his book on his Ruby on Rails web application framework,
The benefits of having dolled up products
It seems that a common mistake made by new product marketers is to market their product as “the best and the greatest.” It may not be wrong, but it is often misleading. While it’s true that products tend to change over time, we all know that the products we can remember fondly from our early years tend to remain more stable over time (and therefore are more likely to be more successful).
Some of these products might be regarded as “dolled up” products: they were originally built with a specific purpose in mind, but then were re-purposed for slightly different purposes, and now serve slightly different markets.
The key question here is: do they still do their job? Do they attract the same customers? Do they solve the same problems? If so, then great! If not, then there could be a reason why your original creation isn’t doing what you thought it would; or maybe even why you don’t think your original creation will ever do what you expect. In either case, changing your product plan can give you an opportunity to fix what isn’t working and get back on track.
The importance of having dolled up products
It’s a cliché but it’s actually true: the more polished and “dolled up” your product looks, the more people will use it. This is generally true when launching a new product (and also when launching a feature that is not immediately obvious from the features of the product itself).
The reason for this is twofold:
• Most people don’t even try to use what you are selling directly — they want to buy your product in its raw form. And once they have that, they realize there are other things (like your service) that can add value to their lives. So, the more polished and “dolled up” your product looks, the better. The whole point of building it was to overcome this problem: it is meant to be used by people who don’t know anything about marketing, so you need to make sure that people think of it as something they would like to buy when they get out of bed in the morning.
In addition, having dolled up products means having dolled up customers — people who know more about you than you know about yourself. That promotes trust and loyalty in return for a service or a support (or both).
One can argue whether this is an intrinsic part of marketing or an extrinsic one — but there isn’t much doubt that it plays an important role in how successful companies get traction on their products and services.
Let’s start by giving a quick summary of what you should expect from your next product launch. We’ll then go on to address some practical issues that need to be addressed. And finally, we will take a look at the different approaches to product marketing that are available depending on your business and industry.
The above is just one way of doing it. Other methods of generating traction include: beta programs (which is a great way to test your product as well as build a user base before launch); video or live product unveils (a common practice with established enterprises who give product sneak peeks months in advance); and more recently (but hard to do well), the method of creating viral campaigns on social media to hype the product.
But whatever method you choose, you should strongly consider some form of paid promotion to supplement it (and accordingly budget for it in advance). Paid doesn’t necessarily mean print or online ads, it can also be sponsored reviews. The YouTube channel MacRumours often does sponsored reviews. They clearly title them as such and are generally neutral in their descriptions. This and other kinds of promotions get your product the attention it organically may not receive; and if done wisely can bright great ROI.