#Whattheheck - products made of "fabric"


So you've heard a lot about our Hack-A-Thon (p.s. sign up here, just sayin') but you might be wondering about some things.  #WHATTHEHECK aims to answer some of those questions that might be running through your mind.

So, let's talk about "Products made of fabric" and what the heck that means, like what kind of products we're talking about.

The immediate thought is "Oh, they're talking about FASHION products!".  That kind of makes sense because fashion product are usually made of fabric but take a second and think about everything that you use on a daily basis that's also made of fabric.

We are talking about INNOVATIVE products! Let me give you some examples:

Sleep Belt


FuelWear - The World's First Intelligent Heated Clothing

There's no need for a fashion background... Just need an idea (for a product made of fabric obviously).

There's no need to be a designer... Just need to be passionate & solving problems with your ideas.

We are talking to Engineers, Scientists, MBA Graduates, Moms, Entrepreneurs.

All you need is a vision and determination to make something.

Are you one of those people? Do you have an idea for a product? Do you have vision & determination and want to make something? Join us at our Hack-A-Thon by signing up today!



Let's start Making Sh*t Happen... online


Okay, so you're ready to make shit happen (yeah, we say that a lot) and you read our last blog post setting your goals.  You might be thinking something like

"Well where the hell am I supposed to sell this? I could try selling online but that seems like a gigantic headache to figure out.... *Sigh"

First of all, relax.  We've got your back.  It's for this very reason that we assemble a dream team of partners, such as Shopify.

Shopify not only offers you an "out-of-the-box" solution, but they've got a team of pros that can help you blow. it. up!

In the meantime, check out this info from an e27 on "8 eCommerce tips that startups can learn from TV shopping"

1. Start with a problem statement - You've probably already seen us say this but ask yourself "What's the problem you're trying to solve?"  It doesn't have to be something crazy/trying to save the world.  It could simply be that you want to see a better product on the market.  Infomercials do a CLASSIC job of this by showing people completely failing at life. (Editor's note: I realize you probably get the point with only one image but... well, these are fairly hilarious. So you get three of them.)

2. Demonstrate before vs. after - Now that you've established what your customer's life is like WITHOUT your product, show them the unadulterated joy of using your product. This turns into a bit of marketing play to be honest so focus on how shiny & happy life will be with the solution you provide.

3. Real life visualization and comparison - Make it real for people.  Show them how what you're providing fits into their life.  Make it easy for them to see themselves using your product.

4. Demonstrate your product strength - WHATEVER solution you're solving, so how well it solves the problem.  Is it meant to be fashionable? Show some glamour shots. Is it meant to be waterproof? Show how waterproof it is. Is it tough as nails? Run it over with a car.  Whatever it's strength is, demonstrate how strong it is.

5. How is it better compared to others? - Listen, you don't need to completely trash other products but highlight how your product is better than others.  You are in love with your product, so your customer why you love it more than everything else that's out there.

6. How to use or apply the product? - Once you commit so much time and brain power to the product/industry in which you're working, you lose track of the fact that, well, not everyone knows about you're talking about.  The best way to look at this is that your customers may not realize there's a better/easier/prettier solution out there.  Show them what you're talking about and then show them how you can help.

7. Use real people if possible - Always use real people. ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS use real people when you can.  If you are selling fashion, your customer needs to see how your product will apply to them/will look on them/will drape or hang when they wear it. 

8. Strong call-to-action - Tell people to do something... Add this to your cart, subscribe to the newsletter, Like the post on Facebook. Tweet something with a specific hashtag. If you don't even attempt to lead people down the road, it's highly unlikely they'll take the leap themselves

Shopify is just one of the fantastic partners that will be on site for our Hack-A-Thon.  You will be able to take your idea from start to finish and get setup to start selling online.  Does that sound good? Yeah, that sounds good.  You should sign up.


Questions for MSH: Phase 2 - Build the idea

Ready to Make Shit Happen? Join our Hack-A-Thon today!

Ready to Make Shit Happen? Join our Hack-A-Thon today!

So last week we touched on how to get started (the secret? start something NOW!).  Let's talk to today about what the next steps to take would be once you've got your idea formed.

Use the END to find the BEGINNING: It's called 'reverse engineering' (for a pop culture reference, check out the mediocre 2003 Affleck/Thurman flick, Paycheck).  See what you want your end goal to be, when you want to be there and then fill in the blanks up to right now. Some refer to this as building an 'Action Plan' (a to-do list) with 'Action Items' (verb-based points that you can complete "Email Ryan about marketing plan")

Think BIG to see the details: It's time to think big.  Like really big.  Where do want to be in your wildest dreams? Plan to get there, WANT to get there, then you'll get there (with some help from us if you need it.)

Set GOALS to achieve: Got that big picture now? Awesome.  Now it's about designing GOALS (or milestones) that'll give you steps along the way.  It will help make the long journey seem shorter and it'll allow to celebrate through the process.

Make a LIST of steps to get there: Just like last time, WRITE IT OUT!  Break it down into steps and prioritize what you need to do in order to MAKE SHIT HAPPEN!  Boom, now you've got a list of jobs to do so you can reach your milestone, which will eventually get you to your final GIANT dream goal!

FINAL PRODUCT: BIG PICTURE & GOALS: So you've taken an idea that you had in your head, given it form and now you've got a gameplan on how you're going to get there.  Go pick up some chalkboard paint, and write all this on a WALL!! Make it somewhere that you will see it EVERYDAY!

Go forth.  Make shit happen!!

Does this sound like your particular cup of tea? Want some help?? Join us at our MSH Hack-a-thon and we'll show you how to make your dream into a reality!!



Questions for MSH: Phase 1 - Where do I get started?


You like to think big? Good.  We like to think big too.  The real question is what do you when you've got a head that's exploding with ideas and you don't know where to get started?

The "Questions for MSH" (published every Monday) will help walk you through the steps on how to take the idea you've got for a new product made of fabrics.  It's all about fashion.  That fashion to be stylish, totally functional or a delightful combination of the two (that's the best one).  A great example of this would be Joanna Griffiths from Knixwear

So let's get down to business.  How the hell do you get started?  Okay, so you've got a head full of ideas with no clue how to take the next step.

Start NOW: The first step is the hardest one.  The first step is the difference between memories and dreams of what 'could have ' been.  If you don't get yourself out of bed in the morning by taking the first step, you aren't going to have much of day.  This is one of those 99% mental things, decide to start and decide to be successful.  Everything passed that point is easy.

Brainstorm EVERYTHING: Every heard someone say 'throw everything at the wall and see what sticks'? That's this step.  Right down EVERYTHING somewhere.  Carry a book around with you all the time.  Take notes on your phone.  Turn into some kind of Post-It note ninja. Something, anything to get you're thoughts out of your head.

Find OTHER entrepreneurs: Surround yourself with like-minded people in like-minded environments.  If you love comedy and what to be a comedian, it'd probably be a good idea spend time at a comedy club instead of let's say, a library.  A comedy club is your environment and it's full of comedians and people that want to laugh.  The library? Not so much. (There are of course, some exceptions)

Tell a FRIEND: Share your ideas with friends of your's, the type of people that will hold you accountable.  This REALLY makes it real and it's not just a random idea or thing you've been bouncing around.  It's recommended that you're addicted to something and you want to quit, one of the best things to do is tell your friends so they can keep you in check.  

FINAL PRODUCT: YOU'VE GOT A DOODLE!: It's a doodle, a drawing, a sketch, a SOMEthing.  Something that used to be in your brain and now it's real! You just took the first step. Congrats! Pat yourself on the back, put your head down and start MAKING SHIT HAPPEN!

Have you been reading this and thinking "OMG YOU ARE LITERALLY TALKING ABOUT ME! HOW ARE YOU DOING THIS! GET OUT OF MY HEAD!" then you are our type of folk.  Join us at our MSH Hack-a-thon and we'll show you how to make your dream into a reality!!