New Product Ideas

One Way to Profit from Consumer Complaints
People with disabilities couldn’t find the entertainment books they wanted to read through public libraries, such as cookbooks, thrillers, and romance novels. The publishing industry routinely offered bibles and health-related subject matter for that market segment. 

A large print publisher decided to solve the problem and profited handsomely by producing the wanted materials.

Lesson: Stereotyping or making assumptions about consumers can be a costly business mistake.

*Self-Publishing Manual: How to Write, Print, and Sell Your Own Book, 11th edition. Dan Poynter, ParaPublishing, 1999.  

*There is a more recent edition.

Marketing Lessons for Potential Entrepreneurs

Why Good Contestants Can’t Win Food Network Contest
In 2011, the final two were narrowed to a man and woman who prepared demo tapes, one of which offered Mexican cooking with a twist, while the other specialized in creating sandwiches.

Some people seem to think it was a close call between the two, but I don’t believe that’s true. The judges are primarily in business to put original programming on the air that will expand their viewing audience. If you watch Food Channel regularly, you already know that they have Mexican cuisine covered, but they don’t have a program about sandwiches.

It was a foregone conclusion who would win and the sandwich king was crowned.

Last year, the winner was a charismatic contestant offering East Indian cuisine. There was no surprise about the judge’s decision in that case, either.

This year, there’s an interesting mix of talent, and the audience has the final vote. This may change the outcome.

Lesson: TV is an industry that survives on marketing to niche markets.
A cooking show based on a popular cuisine that is already covered extensively on the air is not competitive or profitable.


Internet Marketing Primer

Tips for Beginners 
Discussed in six nontechnical articles.
The Web Site
Search Engine/Directory Registration
Getting Links
Joining the Discussion
Online Advertising

What Is Online Marketing? Richard Hoy,  April 26, 2006.

Link Swapping is Unnatural. John Jantsch, September 25, 2006. 23/1/Link-Swapping-is-Unnatural/Page1.html

Unique Gel Candles

Missed Opportunity
Lynn Thomas was awestruck by the unusual artistic candles that she discovered at an outdoor market. She was curious about the production method, but the vendor refused to answer questions about how the product was made, explaining that her brother created the products.

Thomas bought a candle, and through lengthy trial and error she later discovered how to produce the candles herself. She wrote a how-to book on the subject, which became a bestseller.

The craft how-to marketplace is part of a billion-dollar industry.
The vendor failed to follow up on a customer’s request for more information, or anticipate competition, or capitalize fully on other ways to profit from their creative efforts. And apparently they didn’t realize that not all production processes can be hidden by secrecy.

They overlooked an opportunity to teach workshops, create and market books and videos, or license their methods to business opportunity seekers. As a result, they limited their profit potential and gave away their idea.
A one or two person company is restricted in how much product they can produce at any given time.

Other people may have asked the vendor how the candles were made, but where the vendor failed to see the opportunity in their interest, Thomas saw potential in sharing what she learned.

When the candle making e-book debuted on the Internet, do you think the vendor was thrilled?