#843 - Chemical Engineer Zips Up Solution for Baggy Shirts
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But at least in that once again area, it's too baggy. Well, if so you're not the only one in today's story, an engineer receives a ridiculously baggy workshirt, and he likes this shirt. But he's got that problem. It's too baggy. So he grabs it by the color and designs zippy DIY tailoring device for years later, he sold one hundred and fifty thousand dollars yet. He also makes a major mistake and failing to consider the Kickstarter effect where he goes from receiving lots of attention getting lots of backers having lots of sales to a substantial drop all metrics act. The campaign has ended. Welcome to sign us will school. My name is Chris Gil about how did this guy create this zippy product what went well? And what didn't it's all in the short story, featuring a serial side. Hustler? Stay tuned stories coming right up Sonesta school is brought to you by our long-term sponsor ship station going strong into season three really appreciate them when you are selling online. 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He is basically several of our most popular episodes rolled into one. And that's not all CD is also the inventor of zip seen a DIY gadget that lets you tailor your baggy clothes in a matter of minutes. No sewing experience required for years ago. He was working as a chemical engineer an engineer with eight ridiculously baggy workshirt. He liked the shirt a lot and it fit well in the neck, but in the chest and belly section completely swallowed him up. It wasn't exactly a good look for him when he got home and rifled through his closet. It occurred to CD that his entire wardrobe could use a little tailoring, but shackled by student loan debt, a complete wardrobe makeover was out of the question and his engineering education didn't include many, classes and tailoring so CD grabbed the challenge by the collar. Literally to see if anyone else how this problem he went to do some reading on read it there, he discovered that the struggle was indeed, real baggy shirts were a borderline epidemic. He then considered what an ideal solution would look like first and foremost had to be a temporary reusable solution something that could easily be added to and removed from multiple shirts after all this was the poor man's tailoring hack. And if the look he was going for was tailored it needed to create a clean scene and be invisible. From the exterior of the shirt, it should also be flexible and move easily with the wear and assured itself one day during his evening commute. Cd was struck with visions of a c shaped hollow tube, you could place along a seam and tuck in excess shirt material this might actually work he thought so instead of heading straight home he made a beeline to Menards. The midwest answered a Home Depot and purchase enough fish tank tubing to raise some eyebrows. A true man of industry CD headed down to his parents basement and got to work he made a few prototypes. Using the fish tank too. Being a knife to create strategically placed cutouts increase flexibility and something to give the tubing a small amount of rigidity the first of the ration-. He tried involve thin planks of wood. Ouch. He eventually settled on a more comfortable woodland version. Eating a catchy name. He called it. Zip seem now that he had a product at least almost a product and a name. He turned his thoughts to marketing and with funds being tight CD decided to launch on Kickstarter with a goal of twenty five hundred dollars the first day without any advertising at all. And largely thanks to good videos and photos, he took he was two thousand dollars closer to his goal by the time. The campaign ended zip seem had received attention from the likes of gadget review and a handful of other media outlets the attention drove more than three thousand backers to his campaign leading to over fifty nine thousand dollars worth of funding. It was a smashing success. You might say it had him bursting at the seams. He turned a nice profit because getting everything started and running on Kickstarter cost him less than five hundred dollars. Of course. Now you had to deliver the product and the beginning CD intended to build each zip seen by hand. But after a week or so of continuously cutting into plastic tubing with a knife. He realized there had to be a better way, he response to some manufacturers local to his area in Chicago and found someone who would make the first batch for him for ten thousand dollars. This had the added bonus of improving production speed and freed up his time to create an online store. He knew he had a winner. But he was also concerned he couldn't even count the number of times. He'd see something new on the market and thought man I thought about that years ago. He also knew that common problems lead to come and solutions. So he decided to hire a pet and lawyer to protect sip seeing from competition this cost him another five thousand dollars over the past four years. Cd fine-tune zip seem creating two new iterations that he launched again on Kickstarter these brought in an additional forty thousand dollars and since launching he sold one hundred and fifty thousand dollars worth of product the also received his long-awaited patent, creating an ingenious and inexpensive solution to a common problem has brought CD a lot of publicity, and he's focused much of his outreach efforts around his Kickstarter campaigns. This was good in some ways. But also lead to a big problem because traffic drop away off after the campaigns back. He said the drop off in traffic after Kickstarter is substantial I had no idea what I was doing. And couldn't keep them going. I definitely should have done something. To snowball the initial results his advice to you. If you on this. Is to be aware of that effect and have a plan for maintaining lamentable after the time limited attention dies down. And as for him. He'd like to continue growing zip seeing business an launched another product in the near future. And if possible you'd like to avoid using more planks of wood as prototypes. All right. Lots of good lessons here. First and foremost got a plan for that Kickstarter effect that Kickstarter effect is like an Adderall energy drink crash things are going so well, and then all of a sudden, you're like, where's my source of traffic where my buyers so it can be great while it's happening. But think it's probably even more important to create that long-term plan. Now, I take a look at the website for zip seem which overall I think is great that you have a couple of comments first of all the promise. I think is fantastic. The promise is, you know, the zip seem now, let's you tailor your baggy shirts in minutes for around the price of a Cup of coffee. That is just a wonderful benefits statement tells you what the product does it tells you about the benefit tells you how much it costs? My one concern is looking at this product. It seems like it takes a fair amount of work. So people who are into DIY stuff like that's their thing. I get it. But those of us myself included who are not good at fixing things assembling things etcetera. We're kind of you know, put off by this a little bit. And that's almost what every testimonial on the site kind of reinforces. So in read you a couple of these testimonials see what you take away from them. First one is got these in the UK. A couple of days ago. It takes a bit to get them a range, just right, but they do work. Here's the next one myself seems arrived there simple to install. Although I think it's gonna take some practice getting them. Right. And here's the third one. I received my triple pack today and instantly. I put them to good use after about five minutes of trial and error. I can happily report these things work. Well, my army uniforms have never fit me better. Okay. So good testimonials from happy customers. But when I read these testimonials, it just kind of reinforces my concern as opposed to reassuring me because when I release testimonials, you know, what I hear is it takes a bit to get them arranged there. Simple to install, but it's gonna take some practice getting them. Right. It took some trial and error like when I read five minutes of trial and error. I think five minutes of trial and error for someone else is at least twenty minutes for me. Like, at least, I know this from everything I've ever tried to put together from Ikya or anywhere else. Like, I'm just not good at it. So it may very well be that. I'm just not the target market. Like the target market has to be somebody who is into DIY stuff. And I totally understand that. But if it is in fact, actually, really easy like if it really is easy. If it really is something I could do then I wonder if there couldn't be some testimonials that essentially reinforce that fact, a testimony from someone who's like, you know, what I was a little bit nervous about this because I'm not good at putting things together, but they showed up and put it on my dining room table. And I got it to work right away. And it may not actually be that easy. Right. But if it is that there's some way to reassure that concern, I think that would help people like me who might be a little hesitant still one hundred fifty thousand dollars zip seemed sold and he received a patent so huge success there. Congratulations to CD. Can't wait to see what he comes up with next because it sounds like he's got lots of projects in the works. All the time. Listeners inspiration has good inspiration with action is better to find the show notes. For today's episode, including links to zip seem anything else. I mentioned fish tank, tubing, etc. Just come to sottile school dot com slash eight four three that's eight hundred forty three much more is coming up. Do come back tomorrow for episode eight forty four and beyond. Thanks so much. My name is Chris Gil evo-. This is silence. School. From the onward project.