The following case study is typical of what we do for products, often working in tandem with the manufacturer’s traditional ad agency or marketing group.
He came to us with an idea. We thought we could turn it into a digital franchise based on a national obsession: the love affair Americans have with their cats.
“I have a cat, Sweet Little Black Kitty,” James Wynbrandt said. “She sometimes walks on my computer keyboard and presses the keys. It’s like she’s writing feline haiku or something. Sometimes I swear she’s trying to talk to me, to communicate with me through her poetry. She should write a book.”
We saw something wonderful in Mr. Wynbrandt’s idea . . . and a way to make money from it.
As a published non-fiction writer and journalist, Mr. Wynbrandt had already made efforts to see if a traditional publisher might be interested.
He couldn’t even get an agent involved!
Instead, we encouraged him to turn Sweet Little Black Kitty’s poems (and his annotations to them) into a self-published work. To do that, we leveraged our sister company, Cornucopia Press.
THE CORNUCOPIA PRESS SOLUTION:
To create a cyberbrand out of Mr. Wynbrandt’s idea, to productize it and monetize it, we leveraged the following Cornucopia Press services:
Sweet Little Black Kitty – Collected Poems is now available @ Amazon. Here’s how we helped Mr. Wynbrandt get his concept off the ground.
For those who require it, we provide clients with world-class editorial support, delivered by experienced professionals with decades in the publishing business, editors such as:
Maureen Sullivan, former Executive Children’s Editor at Dutton/Penguin, and an expert in Young Adult and Children’s book publishing;
Allen Peacock, with senior editorial experience at Henry Holt & Company, Simon & Schuster, and The Dial Press.
As a published author and professional journalist, in Mr. Wynbrandt’s case, only the minimum amount of proof-reading and other Editorial Support was required.
Print/eBook Cover Design
Print/eBook Distribution (via Amazon exclusively, for a bigger return, available worldwide)
Cost to develop Book/eBook: $4K, for design & book packaging services.
Since each book/eBook is created via just-in-time manufacturing, there is no production cost to Mr. Wynbrandt. Even when pricing the book aggressively to maximize sales, we’re able to generate royalties averaging around $2 per title! That’s more than double what you’d expect to generate from a traditional publisher . . . after earning back your advance, assuming you got one!
In an average year, American cat owners spend $2.15 billion on cat food and $295 million on kitty litter alone. It costs $7,000 to care for one household cat over its lifetime. Cat owners are willing to spend. So, why not on Sweet Little Black Kitty merchandising?
Once again, we designed and created an offering without any associated production cost. Mr. Wynbrandt only paid for the time it took for us to set up his eCommerce offering @ Cafe Press.
Cost of designing and producing Cafe Press storefront: $1-2K+, depending upon the complexity of the store and number of products.
SLBK Pet Bowl
SLBK Women’s T-Shirt
SLBK iPhone 55s Tough Case
Working with Mr. Wynbrandt, we had already developed specific brand attributes (iconoclastic, irreverant, aloof, “beatnik”) for Sweet Little Black Kitty, based largely on SLBK’s history and personal story.
Now, we needed to extend that offline brand and create its digital persona—the Sweet Little Black Kitty CyberBrand.
To create and nurture the Sweet Little Black Kitty CyberBrand, we built the following digital manifestations:
Website registration and hosting;
Integrated publishing system linked to social networking sites (Facebook, Google+, Twitter & Tumblr);
Sweet Little Black Kitty website/blog. Not just pushing SLBK’s book and merchandise, but a constantly evolving collection of interesting and primarily humorous news stories and features on cats and interspecies communication; i.e. a reason to come back again and again to the SLBK CyberBrand . . . and to buy something!
SLBK Facebook “Personal” page, linked to the SLBK website.
SLBK Facebook “Fan” page, linked to the SLBK website.
SLBK Pinterest Board, linked to the SLBK website.
SLBK Twitter Presence, linked to the SLBK website.
Cost of producing website & social network presence: approx. $4K
Plus, these digital assets are designed with non-proprietary software so that—if he so chooses—Mr. Wynbrandt can maintain and update SLBK’s Net presence himself, with minimal effort.
Each digital presence works synergistically. For a small monthly retainer (< $250/mo), Mr. Wynbrandt has opted to have Cyber Branding Solutions maintain his website, Facebook/Pinterest/Tumblr page and Twitter feed. Our staff scours the Web regularly and adds relevant news stories plus features about interspecies communication to the site every few days. And it’s our headache to make sure the eCommerce engines keep humming. We worry so Mr. Wynbrandt doesn’t have to.
Of course, building a Net presence isn’t enough. Simply because you build it doesn’t necessarily mean they will come. That’s why we launched an e-Marketing and PR blitz to promote SLBK online, leveraging:
SEO & Key Word Buys
We made the SLBK site searchable, and purchased key words—such as “Interspecies communication”, and “cat poetry”—on the major search engines.
Local & National Press Coverage
Generated feature stories on Sweet Little Black Kitty in local papers (e.g. St. Augustine, FL, and Dallas, TX), plus a placement @ Petco.com.
For an investment of less than $10K, we helped Mr. Wynbrandt build a digital franchise that’s generating thousands of dollars a year . . . all built on a simple idea, based on a national obsession.