Last updated on January 30th, 2012 at 02:37 pm
This news makes me kick my own butt. Yes, I know a ton of entrepreneurs that are planning and working toward getting into a market as big as Walmart.
But are they ready? I know I’m not.
Would you be ready?
Regardless of your opinion of Walmart as a big-box store, they are the largest retail outlet in the world. Just thinking about the potential of a product launch with that potential makes my entrepreneurial brain go into overdrive.
This article on FoxBusiness.com describes the contest as an “American Idol” style contest for innovative products.
Wal-Mart’s new contest, called “Get On The Shelf,” allows inventors to submit a video showcasing their product, and after an online vote from consumers, the winning product will be carried at select Wal-Mart stores and at Walmart.com.
Wal-Mart announced the contest in mid-January, and already has more than 800 product submissions, according to company spokesperson Ravi Jariwala.
Inventors start your cameras
If it only took a video to get from your idea to the big time, would you do it?
That’s what Walmart is asking. Sign up on their Get on the Shelf website with a link to your YouTube video submission and you are in. You don’t even need a physical product.
Even if you are at the idea stage, you can make a great pitch and be considered. As long as your product is not already on the Walmart shelves, go for it. Their contest rules are pretty straightforward and you can puruse them on your own.
It’s not entirely guaranteed in the video whether Walmart will set you up with manufacturing orÂ not. They seem to hint at the concept while suggesting they will help them out if needed.
In the event that the winners are unable to afford the manufacture of their product, Jariwala says that’s something Wal-Mart will explore on a case-by-case basis.
“Our goal is to allow our customers and fans to help pick the next product they want at Wal-Mart. If a winner is selected that needs additional help with production, we will certainly take a look at ways we can assist that inventor with a supplier,” he says. “Honestly, this is the very first time we are doing this, so we are learning as well, and we will be learning as we go about what we can do to help the winner.”
You can read the entire article at FoxBusiness.com.
Countdown to launch
I will be keeping an eye on this process and checking out the submissions. You can learn a lot from other peoples pitches, even if it is what not to do.
Personally, I love the idea of putting it out there for the consumers to vote on. With a submission deadline of February 22ns, and the first round of voting starting March 2nd, I can’t wait to see what shows up.
Are you ready to launch this big?
Heather Montgomery is a fitness writer, triathlete, and serial entrepreneur who is devoted to sharing what she has learned about becoming a triathlete after age 40. She uses her Metabolic Training Certification to help other women struggling to get fit in mid-life. She lives and trains in Santa Rosa, California, the new home of the Ironman triathlon. You can find her biking the Sonoma County wine trails.
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