manufacturing collaboration

You need not a supplier but a manufacturer partner to make your games.

When I pitched our custom-made card games and board games, I had an encounter with some new clients in the past three months. There is need to separate these clients into two distinct groups for their easier understanding.

In the first group, most of them were games designers working for other companies. Now they are running their new publishing companies successfully in short time, especially after a few funding campaigns. They were even warned of never self-publishing before. The second group is characterized by people who transfer their hobby to a business, but still struggle with their new business to find manufacturers at their beginning.

There may be so many reasons why a new company or a designer can be successful even they do not know much about manufacturing a lot. We’d like to talk from the manufacturer view only here.

In the past,
1) It’s relatively hard to have a short run of like 1000 pieces or 2000 pieces games in the past.
2) To stock and fulfilment goods, it’s impossible or expensive for an small company not mention to an individual.
3) A supplier is divorced from a team collaboration.

Things are, however, becoming easier now. Today, it is possible for a company to even make less than 500 pcs games. For handling stock, warehouse and other kinds of delivery jobs, a fulfilment center can finish all this work. Those obstructions are not problems any more. So many designers changed their minds to run their self-publishing games.

However, many people in group two are still struggling to find a good factory that can make their games. These individuals have all the hope and hobby for the success of their businesses. A good idea can be a huge successful business. The most important thing is to produce their games in high quality. They start their dreams to spend on doing research and repeated communications with suppliers. Why are they struggling? Because they will find it’s still hard to find a factory to make 100pcs of the games. How to solve this problem? To find a real good supplier? In fact, looking or researching for a so-called reliable company may even take them more duration than the creation and marketing jobs. Finally they find the good company, and they also find hard to sell their products at the same time. Reasons for this scenario are simple. One they don't have adequate fans. Two, their price is too high to acceptable by the market. In their mind, manufacturing is a headache in the business like the past. Basically, these individuals begin at the wrong end. All jobs related with logistic from prototyping, quotation, production, shipment, assembling and fulfillment should not take the precious time for any designer nor creation.

Different from the traditional business practice to fighting with a supplier, now it requires to find a manufacturer partner. To ensure the smooth running of the business, a manufacturing partner can work for you for any specific and basic jobs. It’s like a part of your team working for you to support in your business chain. They save your out of the boring but the most significant work.

Who will be your manufacturer partner? A well-known factory in the industry? A factory offers very low price? A factory can be safe to trade? Or a factory known by a friend?... Maybe.
The one can make your jobs easy, and the one can match up with your step is the best for you. Ask 2 questions before you go to a factory:
1. What do I need the factory to work for me? Just a quotation? Or close cooperation till fulfillment?
2. What are the most important things for me to work with a company? In the other words, what are required to make this cooperation well?

December 26, 2017

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