Coined the “Optimus Prime” of backpacks, Bowerbags is a three way configurable bag that can change between a backpack, messenger bag, and saddlebag that fits on a bike. Inventor Jamie Bowerman joins us to discuss how he got the idea, raised funds on Kickstarter, and the important business lessons he learned along the way.
- 03:00 – What is a Bowerbag?
- 05:30 – First version of the bag, knowing you are on to something
- 08:00 – The “on stage” test with a business idea
- 09:30 – It’s all hypothetical until you get version 1.0 shipped
- 11:00 – Hidden challenges of running a Kickstarter campaign
- 13:30 – Product R&D before launching on Kickstarter
- 15:30 – Figuring out the price range for backers
- 16:30 – The Achilles’s heel that made Jamie lose some money
- 18:30 – Acquiring the first batch of customers through Kickstarter
- 22:00 – Commodization of e-commerce platforms
- 24:00 – Version one is better than version none
- 26:30 – Scaling the production process and handing it off
- 28:30 – Power of grassroots and building customers one by one
- 30:00 – Dealing with long lead-times and complaints
- 33:30 – Reading nonverbal cues from selling face to face
- 35:30 – Target customer vs. actual customer and the surprise
- 37:00 – Expanding the product lines and coming up with new ideas
- 39:30 – Dealing with the self-doubt and criticism from people
- 42:00 – Should you take investor money when it’s offered?
- 44:00 – Future of crowdfunding, pre-ordering, and other funding models
Mentions in the Episode:
Episode Length: 47:21
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