Welcome back to another Kickstarter Conversation! I am joined today by William McPhee III who is here to talk to us about his invention: The ROCKET. Thank you for joining us today!
I am thrilled! Thanks for allowing me this opportunity!
THE ROCKET looks like it could be a very useful product, would you mind telling us about it?
The Rocket is the very FIRST Hands Free roller cover cleaner! It is very simple to use and allows its user to re-use roller covers over and over. Simply attach the Rocket hose, (included with adapter) to your sink or garden hose, insert the roller cover with the frame into the Rocket, turn on the water and SHAZAM! minutes later, your roller cover is ready to use. Not only does it pay for itself after repeated use, its saves labor, water and landfills. As a Painting contractor, I really got tired of trying to clean roller covers to no avail. I am proud of my invention and hope the Rocket becomes a staple in the painting industry
How is The ROCKET better than just using my utility sink or taking the pad out into the back yard?
Thats just it! The Rocket is designed to be used in your utility sink or outside in the yard. The difference being, you can get a cup of coffee or check your email on your phone while the Rocket does all the work!
What got you drove you to create the ROCKET? How many prototypes have you built?
My biggest motivation was the realization that the Painting industry truly needed a simpler way to clean roller covers. I got sick and tired of trying to clean roller covers. One the idea led to the next. I have several prototypes I have developed. Each becoming more effective than the first. Six years of R&D went into the Rocket. The final prototype was “grown” by a machine, similar to a 3D printer. This final prototype shall be just like the ones I put out into the free market.
Who is the target market for this? Is it mostly for professional painters?
I designed the Rocket for the Do It Yourselfer and the Professional. Anyone who paints.
A brief search brought up the Surebonder RW-100 Roller Wizard Paint Roller Power Washer. It seems awfully similar to the ROCKET. Do you think there are any chances of patent infringement or other legal issues?
I am glad you brought this up! I own the Roller Wizard. I want to use all of my competitions products. The Roller Wizard is not hands free. I have tried to use the Roller Wizard. You have to stand there and pump the thing up and down. Its clumsy. Why waist your time standing at the sink? With the Rocket you're able to do other things while you're painting cover spins itself clean! Before I launched this idea, I was methodical and patient to ensure I had broad coverage concerning every facet of the Rocket. I am confident about my patent protection. I spent a considerable amount of time and money for this very specific reason.
One of my biggest bugaboos for Kickstarter projects is the Budget Breakdown. Budget Breakdowns help prove a campaign’s seriousness as it shows you’ve done the work to plan out where the money is going. So where is the $45,000 going?
Again, great question. The Lions share, $35,000 is purely for the molds. If i am to understand Kickstarter correctly, 5% of the total goes back to KS. So the extra $6000 will be for back stock and over head.
How did you discover Kickstarter?
Actually a friend of mine loved my Idea. (A fellow Painting contractor) I just googled it and here you are!
A key part of successful Kickstarters is backer participation and how to convert a potential backer into a full backer. How are you engaging your backers? What kinds of things do you have planned for updates to give notice to those who just hit the “remind me” button and surf on? Interviews? Videos? Stories from the project?
I have responded to every backer and thanked them for their pledge. Additionally, I asked them to send the link to EVERYBODY. I have used facebook and email. Also, on my second update, I’ve added and ‘Outtake’ video, just a quick 30 second video of the bloopers during the video shoot. Its interesting who responds and who doesn't. Some people I expect to back haven't yet and those who I really didn't expect much from have. So I keep reminding my contacts through Facebook.
What kind of media attention have you received with your project? How are you spreading the word? Facebook? Twitter? Google+? Youtube? Advertising? Are you using Kicktraq to track your progress?
I actually did an interview with KGW news channel 8. They wanted to the pro and cons of KS. Unfortunately, they didn't air my positive story. Also, I have had phone conversations with several licensing companies such as ‘As Seen On TV’, Pacific world Marketing and Blue WaterMedia. They too loved my video, and more importantly loved the invention. And, yes I am on YouTube.
Do you have any tips/advice would you give to anyone looking to start a Kickstarter?
Well, i'm sitting at close to $7000 with only 19 days to go. My KS funding goal is $45000. I saw a lot of other KS success stories where there pledges far exceeded their funding goal. I got a little too ambitious with my funding goal. Don't ask for more than you really need. Although KS has opened a lot of doors for me, I really don't think I will make my funding goal. Be realistic.
Thank you for spending your time with us! Do you have any final thoughts for our readers?
Absolutely! Go the KS site and search for the ROCKET! I need more backers. Um, and oh yeah……………...THANKS KICKSTARTER!!!
Thanks again and I hope to hear good things from your Kickstarter!
Thanks , James. I really enjoyed this! And thanks for allowing me this opportunity!