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Have you ever heard of Quirky? A model that could make sense for Otto

Have you ever heard of Quirky? A model that could make sense for Otto

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Have you ever heard of Quirky? A model that could make sense for Otto

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Hello Crowdholders, 

 

Otto DIY here. You might be thinking to yourself, who is or what is Quirky? To answer simply, Quirky is/was a company that had a unique model of huge potential only to fail miserably. So now you are probably thinking, "then why is Otto interested in it?." Well, it turns out, what didn't work for Quirky, might actually work for us. 

 

Quirky was a community-led invention platform with a vision to reinvent 'inventions.' They were a typical company that built products, but their model was inspiring. How it worked was product ideas would be submitted, pitched and voted on by the community and Quirky would produce, sell and ship giving royalties to the inventors. Pretty cool yeah? 

 

The number one reason startups fail has to do with building a product with "no market need." It would be safe to assume Quirky reduced that risk because the community identified that need. However, not so fast. 

 

Quirky was off to a fast start and received $175 million in funding, but they fell short, and in 2015 Quirky filed for bankruptcy. So how was that possible? There were 3 main reasons it didn't work. 

 

1) Lack of iteration 

The business model of Quirky was clearly inventive, but they lacked how to invent. When you build a product, there needs to be multiple iterations where in time you tweak and evolve according to the customer's feedback/need. You can't simply release a product and expect instant success. Quirky would invent the product quickly then move to the next. This hurt sales because issues that occurred were never resolved. Having a version 2.0 would have helped sustain sales.

 

2) A Branding Nightmare

They had every type of product. It was almost impossible to think of what they stood for. Being so diverse spreads your brand thin, thus people don't remember who you are as a business. That means you lose credibility as a company, which shows up in your sales. 

 

3) Lack of validation & wrong distribution channels 

Even if a community does the first step of validation, you still need to validate the product with the buyer's market. With having so much capital, they were able to produce large quantities from the start, rather than starting small to see if people buy first. Making deals with such large companies like Walmart and Target requires you to send them mass quantities to get on their shelves. If the product is a miss and "not needed", that's a lot of unbought product. They were at a point of selling 50 products a year, and the misses must have been damaging. 

 

So by taking this case study, how does Otto fair?

That's up for you to decide. 

Our idea is this: 


 

Our community is strong with 4K builders who post their own Otto inventions weekly as we speak. They create their own Otto toy, which is themed or has added functionality. Thus it seams logical to try this model.

 

We are basically focusing on one product line, which is an Edtech robot to improve critical thinking and meta-learning for all ages. A crucial skill to have for the future of work and technology. As a one type product with do-it-yourself attributes, our inventors can produce the design toy itself. By using a 3D printer tool shed we can produce the first 3D printed sold products that is approved by the community. If sales increase rapidly we then would create a mold from a industrial manufacture to sell for large quantities. If the sales don't happen, we take it off the store. But what's good, we use limited resources to test and can scale when required.

 

Just like Quirky, the community does the first round of validation. Then Otto DIY tests the market by selling in their store and on other channels. In fact, we like to call this model learn-to-job, as Otto would in fact have their community of builders learn how to make and design robots, and can earn for having lifetime royalties for that product being sold. Of course, first, their invention needs to be approved by the community of builders. As said before, engineering and coding is a crucial skill to have. Otto supports learning from first timers to advance. Anyone can do it. 

 

If we would go through with this, we will need to do a test. Currently, we have two 3D printers at our disposal. We plan to soon try a challenge with our community to submit their own Otto invention, we all vote and place the winning product in the store. The idea is to try selling just a batch of 10 we can manage with our 3D printers which we have the electronic equipment for. And try the journey model out from the image above.

 

So there you have it. By studying the case study we need to follow these guidelines: 

1) Validate and test if people buy after community validation.

2) Start simple. Make the product when it's sold. Generate first sales directly from our 3D printers. Then make the mold for lager distribution if sales become successful.

3) Stay tight to our brand as an Edtech toy.  

4) And lastly, iterate after the first draft of the toy is tested on the market.

 

By following these examples where Quirky failed we should hopefully improve our probability to succeed. 

 

Now on to our questions: 

 

Do you approve?

It's definitely an interesting idea. Where do you think we might be wrong?

 

We look forward to reading your comments!

Cheers, 

Otto DIY Team 





32 COMMENTS 136 VOTES

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1. review and feedback am sure you guys must have taken this into consideration, this is the best place to find the best way to make a project to move very fast when the project is greatly geared towards the customer there is sure to be a great development in the project, I will say that you need to put a lot of effort into here because the world is changing and the customer will always be the first person to always watch out for.

2. For me I approve, no one knows it all just like the new saying in this COVID 19 era; whoever thought that facemasks and hand sanitizer will go viral or create such a big market, so coming up with new ideas will surely one day make the whole world come looking for you.

3. where you might go wrong might be in everything or in nothing, for me, I will say that looking at the positives will surely make things faster, and the best way to always look at the positives is consistency; when there is grow consistency in whatever you are doing there is surely going to be growth in that project.Consistency is about building small empowering habits and rituals that you partake in ... It's just one example of how doing something consistently over a period of time can reap ... I'm sure you can probably think of at least a dozen more examples. ... It's about learning, growing and adapting your actions that can help lead to

 

 

 

 

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2 weeks ago

NARUTO RAPHEAL guru

I am a Mechanical Engineer with expertise in power and Mecha-tronics. An Entrepreneur

This is a very good write up and from reading this I will say you have done a lot of research into this. because you took careful considerations of each point and got a better design for each of them, I will say that a lot of success will surely come your way.

1. For me I approve, no one knows it all just like the new saying in this COVID 19 era; whoever thought that facemasks and hand sanitizer will go viral or create such a big market, so coming up with new ideas will surely one day make the whole world come looking for you.

 

2. where you might go wrong might be in everything or in nothing, for me, I will say that looking at the positives will surely make things faster, and the best way to always look at the positives is consistency; when there is grow consistency in whatever you are doing there is surely going to be growth in that project.

 

3. review and feedback am sure you guys must have taken this into consideration, this is the best place to find the best way to make a project to move very fast when the project is greatly geared towards the customer there is sure to be a great development in the project, I will say that you need to put a lot of effort into here because the world is changing and the customer will always be the first person to always watch out for.

 

i took a quick look at the quirky website and I liked what I saw I will say that it will make sense to see you guys in the game too,k good luck to you guys and hoping for the best from the future for you guys.

2 weeks ago

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2 weeks ago

Ngene Obinna expert

This a really nice business idea and has a great potential of succes. although before one shouild enter into such business, these should be consider 

The source of the capital i.e if the capital will support a large scale of production for a long even if sales are not going well as the first period of a new company tends to be rough 

The season i.e whats in season at that period in time 

The cost of other related products they are about to embark in. 

2 weeks ago

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3 weeks ago

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3 weeks ago

I think the idea is brilliant and I would love to try out one of the products. 

DIY is really popular right now. After validation and safety issues I think this product has a bright future

3 weeks ago

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1 month ago

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1 month ago

Jacob Hudill new user

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1 month ago

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1 month ago

Mr. V new user

definetely a unique concept. I think the biggest challenge would be getting the exposure as there are lots of other 3d printing services available why the customer choose your service? What extra benefit you bring to the table and how you would plan your advertisement strategy are the key to success. 

 

1 month ago

Karen M guru

Those are some good questions Mr. V.

1 month ago

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1 month ago

Yes I approve but I suggest the guidelines should be given timelines. 

1 month ago

Karen M guru

Yes I approve! It's a great idea. Unfortunately, it didn't work previously. I do believe you need to be prepared to make product quickly. You don't want to lose a customer because it takes too long for production.

1 month ago

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1 month ago

De Gem guru

Cryptocurrency enthusiast, avid reader, rapper and SDG advocate.

- Do you approve?

Yes

- Where do you think we might go wrong?

You will have to roll out the plan to find out though I strongly believe this is going to be successful. Let me explain with another real life example that played out a bit similarly to Quirky.

In 2010 Apple launched the iPad, never before seen by the world and it was instantly a worldwide success. But wait. Did you know Microsoft actually launched a device similar to the iPad way back in 2001? You could arguably call it the first iPad. Microsoft predicted it would be the biggest thing in the next 5 years. This idea was way before its time. That coupled with some of the problems encountered by Quirky as well as unaffordable pricing led to Microsoft dropping the product. Apple launched 9 years later.

** Validate and test if people buy after community validation.

This is the first thing to do of course. Microsoft and Quirky both did that.

** Larger distribution if sales become successful

This is where Quirky and Microsoft failed. With Microsoft, it had the money and tried as much as possible to brand, promote, advertise and gauge the public's interest but the thing just wouldn't take off. I believe if they'd started small, they could have then expanded to a larger distribution if sales became successful. Quirky? Similarly. Here, you have the advantage of saving yourself lots of money which would otherwise have been used in manufacturing the wrong products.

** Stay tight to your brand.

Here, Microsoft did but couldn't find the niche for the product. I believe you will.

** Iterate after the first draft of the toy is tested. 

Well, just go ahead and iterate. Haha. I don't have much to say here.

1 month ago

alohaa jaja new user

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1 month ago

Ngene Obinna senior

The idea is  amazing idea and the chance of success is very high as the company have gotten more experience from a previous company. Although I will the business environment also needs to be put into consideration when dealing with such ideas. That's is to say, first you need to consider your targeted market I do a little survey If these toy robots would sell greatly. Before embarking on such business one must first find a market it's commodity. 

 

1 month ago

Great project , and the idea giving royalty to the idea created by inventor is really appreciated , and success will only come with experience, you got all the drawbacks and the past mistakes , hope and wish your project a big successful soon :) 

1 month ago