Volume 1,

#48: Bowerbags – Kickstarting The World’s First 3-Way Configurable Bag

May 26, 2013

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.

Topics Discussed:

  • 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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