By Nancy Stockton
I took baby steps when it came to spending money, testing the market for product viability before each expenditure. One of the early steps that is free, is to use Lori Greiner’s Hero or Zero twelve item checklist:
- It serves a function
- It solves a problem
- It is unique
- People want or need it
- It is demonstrable
- You can sell it at a reasonable price
- It has a broad mass appeal
- There is not a lot of competition
- You can explain it in a few short sentences
- You have a patent or patents
- It appeals to a wide age range
- It is a manageable size
According to Lori, if you can check off eight or more of these, your product might be a hero. So how did TrustyTrunks fare? Here is the assessment I did for TrustyTrunks:
- Yes, they serve a function, as kids need swimwear.
- Yes, pee and fecal matter contaminating the pool is a problem addressed.
- Yes, there are no other swim diapers claiming to be leak-proof, making them unique.
- I don’t know if people want and need it. Perhaps they prefer what is already on the market.
- Yes, they’re demonstrable. I had someone suggest a demo using chocolate sauce..
- Probably, but I won’t know for sure until I have a set quote for manufacturing whether I can sell at a reasonable price. Manufacturing and shipping costs were early considerations.
- No, I would say the target age range limits broad mass appeal.
- I don’t know how to answer this. There is a ton of competition to meet the need, but again, none are leak-proof.
- Here's my product explanation in one short sentence. TrustyTrunks are a swim diaper that unlike others, keep urine and fecal matter in, and pool water out.
- Yes, TrustyTrunks are patent pending.
- I don’t know how to answer this. Little people in diapers that are swimming is not a wide age range, however, I plan on testing the market for older kids, and even adults. TrustyTrunks would be worn over regular underwear making changing easy and a strong deterrent against peeing in the pool!
- Yes, TrustyTrunks are small and lightweight so definitely a manageable size.
So the TrustyTrunks have seven definite yesses, one probably, a couple of maybes, and three probably nots. I feel I have enough positive check-marks to move forward with investing some money to develop prototypes and test the market further.
Gem of Wisdom: Use the Hero or Zero checklist as one way to determine if you should keep pursuing an idea.