Swizec Teller - a geek with a hatswizec.com

    An evil business model that works

    A whole industry is actively conning us. But they get away with it, because we can't get away from them.

    Don Draper
    Don Draper

    No, I'm not talking about Facebook or Google or Microsoft or Apple. That's child's play in comparison.

    Nope, not copyright and patent trolls either.

    I'm talking about the business model used by the razor blade, the printer and the gaming console industries.

    A simple business model - sell the product at a low price, possibly at a loss, make sure there is a renewable component that needs replacing often and sell it to your users at a premium. The main product locks them in, the auxilary product bleeds them dry.

    Good old bait and switch.

    While gaming consoles are a pretty tame rip off and printers matter less and less. The razor blade industry is actively ripping off half the population! (assuming women mostly depilate, rather than shave)

    As mammals who like to pretend they aren't hairy beasts, everyone must shave. At least once in a while. As a result the male shaving industry is worth \\\\$2,000,000,000 in the US alone.

    First you buy a razor handle, cheap, I promise, later you have to buy replacement razor blades. You know, for a clean smooth shave! Price? Oh, just twice as much as the original purchase, no biggie!

    That's evil.

    Forget Google stealing all your datas or Twitter selling you out to advertisers. Here, you pay to be ripped off. Pay!

    Dealing with the shaving industry has become so horrible I would rather shave with so old a razor that shaving sounds like a snow shovel scraping against asphalt. HRRRRKKKKHHRHK!

    30 euro :/
    30 euro :/

    The handle on my last one even broke - pressing too hard made the whole thing fly off! Kept using it for two months.

    When you finally say to yourself "Okay, this is getting ridiculous, I'm buying replacement razors" ... you go to a store and are presented with a fine selection of two or three types of razors.

    None match what you've got at home.

    You go to the next store ... the situation isn't much better.

    Rinse and repeat about five times and the realization finally hits you - you've been using this razor so long it's been discontinued and you have to buy a whole new set.

    Well, fuck.

    Volunteering for a rip off

    After mulling over three blades, or five, aloe this strip, silky smooth rubber that strip, maye I should just get a disposable razor ... you finally pick something that looks like it might work. You fork over the 10 euro for a new razor and then 20 euro for a set of replacement blades ...

    ... and you vow not to make another purchase for at least a year. You'd rather suffer using the same blade for two or three months.

    No considerations of brand loyalty, no recollection of any marketing you saw on television, no other consideration than minimizing exposure to the purchase. When buying a computer all you want is an Intel processor and a Nvidia graphics card. If it's portable and you can afford it, you want an Apple.

    And you cherish the purchase. You get excited when you buy something!

    With razor blades just walking into the store makes you feel ripped off.

    Maybe if they worked on that, they could get me in the store more often and increase the whole market - not just market share - would get bigger.

    Enhanced by Zemanta

    Did you enjoy this article?

    Published on March 27th, 2012 in Apple, Business model, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Razor, Shaving, Twitter, Uncategorized,

    Learned something new?
    Read more Software Engineering Lessons from Production

    I write articles with real insight into the career and skills of a modern software engineer. "Raw and honest from the heart!" as one reader described them. Fueled by lessons learned over 20 years of building production code for side-projects, small businesses, and hyper growth startups. Both successful and not.

    Subscribe below 👇

    Software Engineering Lessons from Production

    Join Swizec's Newsletter and get insightful emails 💌 on mindsets, tactics, and technical skills for your career. Real lessons from building production software. No bullshit.

    "Man, love your simple writing! Yours is the only newsletter I open and only blog that I give a fuck to read & scroll till the end. And wow always take away lessons with me. Inspiring! And very relatable. 👌"

    ~ Ashish Kumar

    Join 15,883+ engineers learning lessons from my "raw and honest from the heart" emails.

    ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️✨
    4.5 stars average rating

    Have a burning question that you think I can answer? Hit me up on twitter and I'll do my best.

    Who am I and who do I help? I'm Swizec Teller and I turn coders into engineers with "Raw and honest from the heart!" writing. No bullshit. Real insights into the career and skills of a modern software engineer.

    Want to become a true senior engineer? Take ownership, have autonomy, and be a force multiplier on your team. The Senior Engineer Mindset ebook can help 👉 swizec.com/senior-mindset. These are the shifts in mindset that unlocked my career.

    Curious about Serverless and the modern backend? Check out Serverless Handbook, for frontend engineers 👉 ServerlessHandbook.dev

    Want to Stop copy pasting D3 examples and create data visualizations of your own? Learn how to build scalable dataviz React components your whole team can understand with React for Data Visualization

    Want to get my best emails on JavaScript, React, Serverless, Fullstack Web, or Indie Hacking? Check out swizec.com/collections

    Want to brush up on modern JavaScript syntax? Check out my interactive cheatsheet: es6cheatsheet.com

    Did someone amazing share this letter with you? Wonderful! You can sign up for my weekly letters for software engineers on their path to greatness, here: swizec.com/blog

    Want to brush up on your modern JavaScript syntax? Check out my interactive cheatsheet: es6cheatsheet.com

    By the way, just in case no one has told you it yet today: I love and appreciate you for who you are ❤️

    Created by Swizec with ❤️