post

ionized

Note: I no longer work with IonLab since Nov 12 of 2009.

The past couple of weeks has been a rollercoaster ride for
us and for ion.

Sales has been very good so far, but our observation is that people in
India are still hesitant to buy online from reasons such as credit
card security concerns (understandably so) to recently Paypal changing
their UI making it more difficult for the average person to understand
what to do. So, we started accepting offline payments and that has
worked out well.

What’s the response to ion? Simply amazing. I mean if you think about
it, it’s just a charger
(<marketing-pitch>and works really really
well</marketing-pitch>), and yet people are so appreciative and
supportive of what we are trying to do. The clincher is that it
solves a real problem. I’ve often heard the phrase “I just needed
something like this.”

As we say in our about page:

Moral of the story : “See a need, fill a need” — ‘Robots’ movie.

The three biggest points about “ion” (both the company and the
product) that people like are:

  1. We took the idea to execution. This alone amazes people. I still
    remember what Jace once said: “Ideas are
    cheap. Execution is everything.”

  2. The statement we make : “Made in India. Available only in India.”
    and “We are just Indians who want to make products for India.”
    Nothing much to be said here, except that we mean it and it’s not
    something we say lightly or say it for the sake of it. And no,
    we’re not going to rephrase it as “I’m just an Indian who wants to
    develop products in India for everyone in the World” as someone
    suggested.

  3. We have a very good finishing – the ion itself and the packaging
    looks very good and has a professional presentation. At the right
    price point.

Another aspect is how word-of-mouth has helped ion and we were banking
on that because we do not have a marketing budget other than the
posters we are giving to our friends to put up in their company notice
boards. Most people came to know about ion through emails, and it’s
surprising how effective email forwards are – the chain just keeps
going on and on, and many times my friends had come to know even
before I sent it to them because someone had already forwarded it!

Processing all the ion emails is both a chore and fun…

The worst mail we’ve got is:

first time in india single click orkut programs launching a
product,website,service etc. but dont have enough money to market
your product,service,website etc.

there are more than 3 crore registered resident indian on orkut out
of 8 crore indian internet user.noboby can question the potentional
of orkut.

orkut single click tools can help u to reach 3 crore indians at
cheapest price possible.

the features of orkut single click program are as follows:

1)Single click to scrap all your friends. 2)A Single click can
directly take u to a user’s scrap book or album 3)A single click
directly creates a topic in all the groups u have joined 4)A Single
click helps u to join a community. 5)IDEAL for people who
frequently use ORKUT,people who want to market their product.

Free stuff included : 1)orkut FAN FLOODing 2)DATABASE of 8 crore
email address 3)FREE orkut tweaks

i m gonna give this full package in a cd for 500 rs and shipping 50
Rs extra

plz call 098________(Editor’s Note: Full number not reproduced to
protect the guilty)

Some of the best mails we have received are:

I would like to congratulate all three of you for your New product – “ion |
power your music”. I wish you three develop more and more usable products for
all of us. I would like to buy it even though i don’t have any of the product
which needs usb charging.

and

If you are devising a marketing strategy for your company and this product, I
will be glad to offer any assistance. I have worked in pre-Sales Europe for
quite some time and my experience, given the remarkable nature of your product
may prove helpful.

and

I am a B.Tech-III Electronics student. Came to know about you through some
forward. I actually have few such ideas (related to electronics), but don’t
know how to commercialize them. Can you help me out? Though I can get placed
in some MNC easily, I am more interested in implementing my ideas.

I think this last mail was the best we’ve ever got. I’m starting to
believe what Vikram says that more and more of this generation are
thinking like this, and “want to do things for India”, and he/we mean
that in a non-political non-hyper-patriotic manner. It’s just that
simple “ness” in us.

And finally, some of the blogs that have written about us are:

All in all, there’s more work to be done, but so far so good. There’s
more to it behind the scenes, and perhaps I’ll write about it in
another post.

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Comments

  1. You should bring the Ion to the next Barcamp. Do a session on the journey.

  2. Abhinav Saxena says:

    Well, for the first time when I read here that you guys have actually designed a hardware product, and that too in your free time, I was pleasantly surprised. Nice it is. And you rightly said, “See a need, fill a need” :)

  3. How about an ipod shuffle adapter to give out free with the product? (or for 20rupees extra)? I think this would be a great side-product to have:

    http://myincipio.com/product/IP-300
    http://www.microhaxo.com/hack/

  4. Gr8 work pal.. way to go… Wow, really nice to hear that u ppl really have made a product, a marketable product that too hardware. Kewl!.. Make this beta and bring out a rocking alpha later… :)

  5. @Jace: We’ll consider it :)

    @Abhinav, @Sumod: Thank you for your encouragement.

    @Arnab: Interesting idea, will read more about it, thanks! :)

  6. Folks : Hearty congratulations ! Great progress since proto.in :-)

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