There’s a pretty adventurous idea out there for an online community where consumers can connect directly with electronics manufacturers to pre-order product and provide feedback to product managers, marketers and designers as early adopters of product. It’s called Prelaunch, and it, um, launched at CES this year.
Originally, the site, which looks a lot like its spiritual brethren Kickstarter, offered special pre-launch prices on upcoming products to individuals. Now the site has introduced “crowd discounts.”
From the release:
Derived from the wildly popular crowdfunding model, crowd discounting rewards early adopters by reducing the price of a product as unit sales goals are reached during a pre-order campaign. For Prelaunch brand partners, setup of the unit sales goals and tiered-pricing are seamless. Once the parameters are established, the Prelaunch brand buyer coordinates the rest, from a uniquely designed product page to an integrated marketing strategy.
Consumer members who pre-order a participating product do so with the understanding that they are authorizing the purchase at the initial pre-order price. They can then help drive the price down by encouraging others to pre-order the product. Prelaunch’s integrated social sharing features enable members to quickly and easily spread the word about the latest and greatest gear, and encourage others to order before the product hits mass retail. As more orders for a product accumulate, price breaks kick in for all pre-order customers.
A company called TREWGrip, which males a handheld rear-type keyboard and air mouse, is the first to offer crowd discounts.
“By working with Prelaunch and securing orders prior to production, the company has a better understanding of demand and can better control production costs, which benefits everyone involved. As more people participate in the campaign, the price for TREWGrip can drop by as much as $100,” explained Donald Brewer, co-founder and president of Prelaunch.
You can join Prelaunch for free.