First to Try - will this encourage consumers?

Discussion in 'Shapeways Shops' started by wgseligman, Jul 17, 2014.

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  1. wgseligman
    wgseligman Well-Known Member
    I hope creating two posts with feedback isn't intrusive, but I feel this topic is different than the earlier one I posted.

    As someone who's been following the 3D printing technology for a while, I understand the "First to Try" concept. I dare say that everyone on this forum understands it as well. If they see a picture of a item of jewelry that's been printed in brass, choose Raw Silver as the material, and see the "First to Try" icon, they'll understand what it means. They'll also have a good understanding of Shapeways' printing process through reading the articles on the site. They'll understand the risks. They'll appreciate the transparency you offer.

    I'm trying to market my Shapeways shop to folks who have no understanding of 3D printing. The transparency that you're trying to offer in the printing process will confuse them, if not scare them outright. Consider the example in the previous paragraph: if they click on "Raw Silver" and see "First to Try", they're not going to buy that item. They may very well lose confidence in me and not purchase anything from my shop at all.

    This may be a major issue for new shops such as mine, for which I'm still trying to figure out an affordable marketing strategy. It's going to be a long time, if ever, before I have customers order enough of the same item to accumulate statistics for a success rate. In the meantime, they're going to see an indicator that suggests I don't know what I'm doing. (Maybe I don't, but can we can keep that between me and Shapeways?)

    Suppose there is a problem with a model that requires a trivial change? For example, in one of my pendants ( l?beta=1), I trivially increased the size of the loop so it could accommodate a leather thong. As a result of this change, the success rate for all of the materials for that item would go to zero, tossing away any confidence I might have had with a new customer.

    I'd like the option to keep printing success statistics private, to just the shop's owner. If a print fails or a customer complains, I certainly want to know about it so I can fix the problem. I'd rather not have to expose my n00bishness or my product fixes in such a way that might scare away customers.
  2. woody64
    woody64 Well-Known Member
    Yes doing minor changes is a problematic topic for this workflow.

    Would be great if that could be reflected in a status.

    Is there anywhere a status diagram of the status available. Would be much easier to read and discuss ...

  3. railNscale
    railNscale Well-Known Member
    I totally agree with wseligman's remarks. 'First To Try' is not on my wishlist.

  4. SavIsSavvy
    SavIsSavvy New Member
    Thanks for the articulate feedback, all!

    Versions is something we're actively discussing how best to approach. The goal is to encourage iteration, not discourage. The alternative is not to offer a model for sale until you have printed it for yourself.

    Consumer expectations is tricky, and your assessment is a good one. We believe that more and more people are becoming early adopters, and valuing unique, one of a kind, or exclusive products. We think more people will embrace First to Try than one may think at first glance, but please do keep us posted on your sales trends.

    I've shared your thoughts with our Product team.
  5. ksims
    ksims New Member
    Software that can assess print-ability is the correct solution to this problem, not scaring customers.
    Please don't implement "First to try".
  6. HenrikRydberg
    HenrikRydberg Shapeways Employee Design Team
    @wgseligman: I (and everyone from product and marketing teams) enjoyed reading your blog post on dropping plastic offering. In the post you also described a wish to ask someone to order and photograph the product for you. In its randomness, it was a positive sign that were on the right track with Beta product. With that you'll be able to do exactly that: ask for support like that!

    You should read Brad's reply on Guideline Families ( 92#msg_94195 ). I replied on the thoughts behind the labelling itself ( 92#msg_94292 ).

    The discussion on First to try is continuing in the original thread. To make sure we're not losing any replies, we should jump back and continue discussion there.

    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 18, 2014
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