Need feedback on my secret product

Remember my hint from a previous post about a new secret product I was working on? Well, I am glad to say that prototype #1 is about to be completed and I am going to use it next weekend to test it out in the field.

If it proves useful, the next step will be to start manufacturing a small batch for resell but, before doing so, I would like to have some feedback from you guys. Basically, I can build it two ways:

• DIY style, which means it will look like a DIY project, made out of wood, etc…
• Pro level version which means painting everything black, curved corners, no nuts coming out of the module, etc..

Of course, one option is much more expensive than the other. This is why I would like to poll you guys about the importance of looks for you.

Notice I am not talking about features or prices, I just need to know if I should invest time in prettifying the whole thing or not.

Sorry if I don’t give more details but until I am ready to sell there, I rather keep everything secret to protect myself against copycats.

About Tommy

Photography allows me to be what I want to be, to be where I want to be, and to do what I want to do ... I'm not professional photographer and I don't need a title, I love to take photographs and that is what I do, I love to learn and I always try to do it better ...

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  • I guess I’d go with the DIY option first, then if people start snapping them up like hotcakes, you can drop a little money on making it pretty and sell pre-made version for more. I’d also like to see the less expensive DIY version, since I’ve dropped so much money on my camera and lens, I don’t have much left to spare…

  • Hmm, Mark makes a good point but what if the price difference is not that big? When you say ‘much more expensive than the other’, does that mean you have already made estimates? If you haven’t please consider how we (the guys who rush in for the DIY version) would feel when the pro level version comes out with a small price difference? I too have spent a lot on my photo equipment, my budget is now thin but I guess we will all admit the importance of look and feel. If the price difference is that big then I guess I am for the DIY version.

  • admin

    Thx for the feedback. My initial estimates are about 40-60$ for the DIY made out of wood and around 100-120 for the pro version unless I can find someone with a CNC table that does not charge ‘pro’ prices… I will report on this by the end of the week.

  • Steve

    No doubt about it, go DIY off the block and if sales warrant, then go pro. You have to build up a client base first that will give you feedback before you go whole hog.

  • All right, now that we’ve given you some feedback, do the three of us get a sneak peek at what you’re developing? Or a discount? Pretty please?

  • admin

    Nice try. I will see what I can do :-)

  • Sounds like you need to do some more market research. Who is your target buyer? Is it the hobbiest or pro photographer? Still photographer for videographer? Not knowing what the secret product is my initial reaction is if you release a DIY kit and I could reproduce it by looking at your kit info I’m not likely to buy the kit, unless there’s some fancy electronic do-dad that the product requires that I can’t make myself.

  • admin

    My final version is quite easy to reproduce for anyone who wants to waste a few hours. While I am going to pattent the thing to make sure no Indians make a knock off, I don’t care if you do your own version for your own use if you value money more than time. In my case, it is the opposite.
    While I will try to make the product as cheap as possible, it still has to be viable for me to make them.
    With the closest product competitor costing over 100$, I am sure people will like my price. :-P

  • I would suggest DIY too. I like the idea of being able to buy a pro version in the future, and with that price difference and the low price of $40-60, I wouldn’t feel like I wasted money on the DIY if I liked it and wanted pro later.

  • L.D.

    Weight! I’m carrying too much already so is there a significant weight advantage to the pro version?