Q&A How is a product smart?
I’ve been asked this several times recently especially since I market "smart products to smart people."
Smart products are extraordinary, just like smart people. Like anything smart, they stand out. So, as I look at various product lines, I look to see what stands out- what goes beyond what has to be done- to what is done exceptionally.
I’ve looked at probably 50+ product lines and I can confidently say most products on the market are not smart. Why? Because most companies manufacture products with the primary goal of marketing cheap, passable products . It doesn’t matter to them whether their products really work because their goal is not truly the consumer’s best interest.
So what is smart? As a chemist, I have to determine that as objectively as possible, so I use a rubric, a set of strict standards, to what I accept as smart. Here’s a sampling of the standards in my product rubric:
To me, smart products must:
- Be based on good science, first and foremost (no fad products!).
- Be supported by double-blind, placebo-controlled research published in peer-reviewed journals
- Be formulated to represent the best, up-to-date science
- Use the correct form of ingredients to work with the body’s natural biochemical process
- Have proven bioavailability , so the products do what they are supposed to do, if taken as directed.
- Be completely free of contaminants (think pesticides, heavy metals, artificial colors, and sweeteners, fillers, etc) at all times, every time.
- Be manufactured using pharmaceutical levels quality control so that dosage, purity, and safety are consistent.
- Have an excellent track record.
- Be guaranteed by the manufacturer so the consumer risk is minimalized.
Guess what? Only about 5-10% of the products on the market fit those standards.
But that’s not quite the end of the story, at least in my book.
Smarter products also pay attention to the environment and to people- from sustainable harvests to green manufacturing to healthier homes. This is important to me because I want to minimize our family’s impact on the earth so I want my manufacturers to do the same.
Smartest products use ethical marketing and business practices-practices that go beyond doing what’s legal- to doing what’s right such as paying just wages, ethical selling, profit sharing, access to benefits, etc.
In my eyes, smart products are therefore, good products, and also a philosophy. What’s your opinion of smart products? Attractive? Compelling? Worth it?