View Full Version : Idea for my Muse
06-17-2007, 04:58 AM
Ok my wife and I are both involved in dentistry and we also have a 3 year old and a 1 year old. So our idea is a product for mothers who have young children with a topic geared towards "8 things you need to know about your child's teeth" or "10 steps to give your child a healthy, beautiful smile."
Right now we are in the idea stage but does anybody have feedback? We realize the mother market is immense but are limiting it to mothers who have kids under 5 years old.
First visit on the board, look forward to becoming a regular!
06-17-2007, 05:37 PM
I like it nice niche but I would increase the number of steps up from 10 to add more of a perceived value or take it out...like "Dentistry Insider tips to give your child a healthy, beautiful smile."
Another topic could be how to take the fear of going to a dentist from your child or something along those lines.
The mom market is huge but you're on the right track by sticking to a niche dentistry and mothers who have kids under 5 years old.
Keep us posted on your product! Good luck.
06-17-2007, 06:14 PM
Great market, but I wonder about your selling price; don't see any way to get it into the $50 - $200 range Tim recommends. This idea sounds like a $15.95 e-book, even with Webzu's recommendations. Could you meet your TMI selling it at that kind of price? Or am I missing something?
Now, if you could invent bubblegum that prevents cavities or ice cream-flavored toothpaste... :)
06-18-2007, 02:48 AM
As a mom of a four year old I can give you my feedback-- I think the mother market is Great (may target that myself) since we're all so overboard with health and safety issues BUT I will admit privately that I don't get all crazy about her teeth right now because I know they will fall out! Even my hygenist told me NOT to follow my dentist's recommendations to have her teeth sealed right now because she said the preventative cost is twice as much as the cost for fillings-- if she even needs them. I'd say my cohert has a similar attitude. My demographic? I'm 38; hold a master's degree, bought all the baby einstein videos, I made all my own child's organic baby-food etc.. so I'm not the toothless white trailer trash you might be imagining who doesn't brush her child's teeth. Frankly, I think the whole "fancy toothbrush" craze is where it's at with children and dental and I'm embarassed to admit how often I buy her toothbrushes--one that glows if you brush long enough? or figure out some sort of gimmicky thing to get them to brush. Things that I might buy:
1) Kid CD they play while brushing? "Don't stop till the music ends" she never seems to brush long enough maybe packaged with a booklet? Something for her and something for me for added value?
2) Cool flossers? All I see now are disney ones-- which she likes--
3) one idea.. my friend's kid lost three teeth and they did an experiment soaking them in juice, soda and milk to see which ate the enamel off? Aimed at older boys (who went nuts when she took it to his school) Maybe some sort of kit like that-- and change it to a sugar packet, or something you sell in the kit?
Id say if you stick to information-- make it something valuable to me after the baby teeth fall out... and I usually have to be scared about the "what if I don't do this" like thumb sucking damage or bigger orthodontic bills later on....
Sorry to blather on... but thought input from a mom would help...
06-18-2007, 05:12 AM
This idea sounds like a $15.95 e-book, even with Webzu's recommendations. Could you meet your TMI selling it at that kind of price? Or am I missing something?
How do you know this without testing? We're supposed to question assumptions here, and we can't say it's a "16 buck" eBook before we have any idea of what customers are willing to pay.
If it's a small niche, that's even better, because it means there's no other eBook that does it. Am I the only one to read the book? ;) Just teasin' ya.
To me, it sounds like a great idea for a muse, and I'd get to work on testing so that you have a test run going some time this week. Delaying won't accomplish anything.
06-19-2007, 03:10 AM
How do I know this without testing? I don't. But over the last 20 years or so I have written maybe a dozen books (I genuinely don't remember), edited or consulted for more, and evaluated a godawful big pile of ideas that didn't justify actual work. I get paid for this sort of thing, and I'm pretty good at it.
Leave aside the basic idea of doing something for parents worried about their kids' teeth. It doesn't feel like a winner to me, but pressly has given you a better answer from that viewpoint than I ever could. I don't have children and don't expect to.
Instead, just for practice, let's look at the product as a marketing package. What value will justify the price range Tim recommends? Remember his base formula: a book/report/whatever and four or five CDs to fatten the package. Is this product the "moral equivalent" of that?
It could be. In 4HWW, Tim offers us just three basic ideas: outsourcing, muses, and travel. But they are big ideas, and he elaborates on them at length and backs them up with a lot of supporting material. Once we have read the book, we understand that it is worth much more than $50.
[Nonetheless, Tim chose to market it through a traditional publisher, and it goes for $11.97 at Amazon. I can make a very good guess what he receives for each copy in royalties, and you would never try to build your muse on it. It's worth thinking about why Tim decided to go that route, by the way.]
Back to the current subject. To me, these eight or ten facts/concepts/ideas just feel too "light" unless you can convince the buyers that they will make a big difference in their lives. And they won't. Caring for your kids' teeth is a significant issue, but not a life-changing one. (See again pressly.) In traditional terms, this candidate muse would carry an article, but not a book.
Of course, your sell copy does not have to admit that the product consists of less than a dozen "helpful hints." Yet what can you say that will sound substantial without implying size? And will your customers feel they have gotten their money's worth when they open the box or envelope?
If not, how can you improve the package? Maybe I lack imagination, but I don't see what you can add to sweeten the deal. A tube of proprietary toothpaste based on the ideas in your report? A directory of pediatric dentists? CD galleries of happy babies with good teeth? :D
(Gee, that smiley is even more appropriate than I intended.)
Honestly, $15.95 was the most optimistic estimate I could justify. One Web marketer whose site I visited sells e-books with roughly the same level of substance. She pitches each of them as being intended to help with a fairly narrow problem faced by self-employed craftsmen. She prices them at $4. For a muse, I assume your sales pitch would be more ambitious than hers.
Cr*p. I hate being negative.
It's worth noting that my thinking is still conditioned by decades in traditional publishing. Life looks different when it takes a month or more to polish a formal proposal for your agent to schlep around New York, you expect to spend most of a year working on the book, and you won't see a bound copy for at least six months after that. I don't want to commit thought, labor, capital, or my precious enthusiasm to an idea that I'm not confident can make it reasonably big. Enthusiasm least of all; I don't take disappointment well.
On the other hand, Google tests are so cheap and easy that you can afford to make them without worrying about whether any one product works out. If you really like this idea, it can't hurt much to try.
One way or the other, I wish you the best of success in your search for a muse. May we all find ours in the next week and reach our TMI before August.
06-19-2007, 02:00 PM
I'm curious, what do you think his royalties are? I have no idea how the whole publishing industry works...
Also, I'm not totally surprised he decided to go the book route (he did say that being a bestseller is a goal of his) as opposed to an ebook. In a couple of his iterviews he's said that he wants this 4HWW to be the beginning of a work-life balance movement.
06-19-2007, 07:32 PM
Tim probably considers his royalties personal, so I'd as soon not get too specific about it. Put it this way: Per sale, he isn't making a tenth of what you would hope for from a muse, even on the full-price copies. He makes up for it on the volume of sales.
As for how publishing works... Many years ago, I worked for a magazine in New York whose management wanted to start a book division. They hired a bright young editor to come up with ideas, assign them to writers, negotiate with publishers, etc. He and I became close friends. With a third friend, we ate lunch together most of the time, attended each other's rare parties, occasionally met my wife after work and went out to dinner, etc. He is a really good guy, the best that traditional publishing can claim, and now is executive editor at a major publishing company. I haven't actually seen him in more than ten years and still regard him as one of my closest friends.
Eventually, he got a better offer and went to work as an editor at one of the "name" publishers. He bought my first book that was not associated with the magazine. After the contracts were agreed, he apologized for having been unable to get me a larger advance. But, he reflected, it might actually work to my advantage. The royalties would arrive in another tax year, when my income was not inflated by the advance, and I would not have to come up with so much money the following April.
I pointed out that less than a year earlier, when acting as my de facto agent, he had said, "If we ever get a royalty, it will mean that I didn't get enough of an advance." He had the grace to look embarrassed. It was the most fun I've ever had in publishing. Of course, it didn't get me another dime.
He is, as I say, one of the truly good people in the field. In general, publishers are people the rest of us should not have to deal with now that horsewhips no longer fall readily to hand.
06-19-2007, 07:58 PM
I agree with some of the questions.....we dont really see that this couild be sold for the $50+ plus that Tim recommends. We also see it in the $14.95 range if we were to do it in a DVD type format. If we went the route of an e-book we'd do it for less than $10 I'd assume.
Bottom line is we dont know if it will make money or not. With volume it might but we're leery of it. Tim mentions that information is the easiest thing to sell....but we are struggling to find something information based that people will pay enough for to have any decent profit.
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