Part 2 – From Sketch to International Distribution… in 5 months!


So the concept, designs and costs were all in, but the next stage was to conduct the market research that would indicate if this could sell or not.

Over many years I have learnt that one persons view on style, design or concept is not proof alone, on the failure or success of a concept.

If my wife listened only to my views she might never buy animal print clothing!

When I asked friends and family about The Pen Rest …. well … frankly they laughed!

So there had to be a better way to establish the following;

  • if people wanted the product without manufacturing it
  • I needed to reach a mass audience on a low budget
  • I would need to use every conceivable free bit of marketing in my test
  • my budget was limited so testing had to be exceptionally sharp

The answer had to be crowd funding.

If you’re not familiar with crowd funding then you’ve been living under a rock! This is the latest new wave of marketing and developing a concept to reality.

Here you set a funding goal, work out what you are asking people to back and then promote like crazy to reach the target for your project.

So I set about writing up all the project details on two crowd funding sites. I chose two of the biggest… Indiego and Kickstarter.

My funding goal had to be based on manufacturing 1000 Pen Rests, covering costs incurred, packaging, carrier and postal charges, etc.

I needed £12,500 for my funding goal… All or nothing… that’s how it works.

Both campaigns ready… I submitted them for approval.

Sadly they were not granted 🙁 There was problem with the images… No photorealistic images were allowed!

I needed prototypes making, if this was to get approval and get it off the ground.

See how I get on in Part 3.. Getting Prototypes.