By Jacob Yount
When you start your journey into building a private label, there a very large question you’re face with in the beginning.
“What product or products will I manufacture?”
What’s going to be the actual, physical STUFF, that you’re going to deal in?
This isn’t necessarily referring to the person that has a passion for a certain product. They know from the onset that they want to build the perfect widget. Although some of these questions and themes will remain pertinent.
For the purpose of this post, I’m talking about people who all they know is that they want to build a brand.
They want to build a brand, make stuff and sell stuff.
They know they want to sell goods on Amazon or a Shopify site, but then they go to the blank sheet of paper.
Their entire colorful box of Sharpies may be strewn all over the place, ready whiz and zoom and create…but they’re drawing blanks.
BEFORE YOU START, THE QUESTION LOOMS.
“What in the blue moon am I going to sell?”
You’ll get ideas and they may seem good.
Then you’ll realize that maybe that isn’t such a good idea…
This is the part of the process on which you should spend an abundant amount of time.
You should doubt and bring up devil’s-advocate arguments against everything you think of…BUT.
To balance that out, before you start, don’t spend forever thinking about the product.
I’m not meaning to contradict myself.
- Spend a ton of time considering and questioning your decision before you start.
- But eventually, you’ll have to make the plunge and choose the product you’ll do.
You need to over think it, and then execute it as if you didn’t over think it.
That’s how I do in many cases. When I have to speak publicly, I prepare every single word.
I memorize as if I’m going to read or say verbatim.
But when game time comes, I try to speak or present as if I didn’t prepare.
You don’t want to just know it in your head, you want to know it in your heart (I won’t charge you extra for that piece of poetic pontification).
IT’S THE SAME WITH YOUR PRODUCT
You need to not only think something is a wise decision but you need to build some belief in the item. You’ll need to grow a confidence in the production you’re putting your name and finances behind.
The more investment and the more comfortable you are financially, you can think about your first selections in possibly a less rigid way.
The tighter your funds are, you need to be more precise from the start.
This major question will set the pace for your entire journey.
Choose wrong and you won’t move goods. Your inventory becomes an albatross.
Make a worthwhile choice and you’ll find yourself on the way to building a brand (if you weather all the storms).
In the next post, I’ll share some practical considerations on how to start the process of product selection for your private label.
Jacob Yount lived in China from 2001 to 2012, during which time he started JLmade. He is now based out of North Carolina in the US and his home office is still in Suzhou, China; manufacturing and exporting branded merchandise, promotional products and retail gifts for distributors worldwide. Contact Jacob at firstname.lastname@example.org, or find him on his blog.