Direct-to Consumer Business Model & Company Philosophy
“In the beginning I looked around and, not finding the automobile of my dreams, decided to build it myself” — Ferdinand Porsche
SELLING DIRECT TO YOU
The Drop-Tine Seed Co. is a consumer direct brand. We simply acquire the best products based on science and sell direct to you at www.droptineseed.com. The traditional retail sales model erodes your ability to get the best price on the best products. Instead of paying for high quality products you are forced to sacrifice by paying middlemen markups while you receive lower quality products. In other words, you’re paying more so a reseller can make a profit. Why not just eliminate the reseller’s margin allowing you to purchase the best quality at roughly the same cost? Sometimes the retail model works and other times it doesn’t.
I’ve watched the major seed companies research, market and sell products for 15 years from the inside: it works for them, not you. Though I can’t claim that they don’t have some great products because they do, I know for a fact that their model is broke and it fails to benefit you. When more than one food plot company informs me that they removed the best cultivars/species and replaced them with the third best to satisfy some fictitious “price point” for the major box stores I knew my clients were getting average products at premium prices. My clients crave any competitive advantages they can gain over their neighbors. The “old model” doesn’t work for them.
In the food plot seed industry, the norm is to opt for a sales model with a multiple-tiered distribution network. They sell to a distributor who then builds in a 40% margin prior to selling to you: the final user of the product. This model is antiquated. I’ve opted to avoid a multiple-tiered distribution system and sell directly to you because:
1. Eliminate Price Point Building –
Many times the final product that hits store shelves was developed within the strict guidelines of a fictitious price point. Price point building degrades the quality of the seed in the bag AND increases the amount you pay so middlemen can profit from a 40-50% markup. Why pay more for less? Drop-Tine does not market or sell on price. Instead we simply read & follow the independent, replicated trials (the “sciency” stuff) and only offer premium seeds of improved varieties.
2. Rapid Customer Feedback –
We want to develop superior products by combining Jason’s experience & knowledge with unfiltered, direct customer feedback. We want to hear honest feedback about our products directly from you and as soon as possible without filtering through a retailer. It’s the most efficient way to make good products great.
PRICING MODEL ILLUSTRATION – CONSUMER DIRECT BRAND – DROP-TINE SEED CO.
Their Model AKA “Old Model” – Companies that employ traditional retail sales models strangle innovation by allowing box stores to create fictitious price points. The problem with this model is that you are paying premium prices for lower quality seed so major box stores, seed marketing companies & dealer/distributors can skim a margin. Because the box stores set restrictive price points AND middlemen profit from selling product to you the quality and performance of your food plot is sacrificed.
Drop-Tine Seed Co. Model – The Drop-Tine consumer direct model allows us to utilize premium, high quality certified seed from improved varieties without sacrificing quality that compromises the performance of your food plots. We don’t sell through box stores or dealers. We simply fill bags with premium seeds and cut out unnecessary middle men to offer high quality products at competitive pricing.
In other words, while competitors’ products are designed around price points and retail profitability, Drop-Tine Seed Co. products are built on science.
DROP-TINE STARTED AS A SERVICE BUSINESS
To me, the evolution of going from a service business to a product business is the path that makes the most sense for the consumer to benefit. One of the advantages of starting as a service business has been the requirement to remain independent. A consultant’s next paycheck is never guaranteed and is always a function of how satisfied his clients are. I’ve always felt it was important to be able to sort through the market confusion while representing my clients and find only those products that work for their specific application. Things like my profitability, bag design & attraction and marketing programs have never been considerations in the food plot products that I recommend to clients.
In the course of helping clients find food plot products that maximize the productivity of their properties I realized that there are many more customers who can use these products. As a result, the Drop-Tine Seed Company was created. I’ve seen all the trials and research, now I want to hear what the real world thinks.