Looney Labs Icehouse Mailing list Archive

[Icehouse] Re: Pyramid buying patterns

  • FromJody Chandler <windblownhermit@xxxxxxxxx>
  • DateWed, 14 Nov 2007 09:37:18 -0800 (PST)

Jorge Arroyo <trozo@xxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

My analysis was based on the low sells that individual boxed games have experienced in the past, and the sudden rise in sells with TreeHouse sets. As fun as the game TreeHouse is to play once in a while (especially with kids), it's not really only the game that is selling all those sets, but the possibilities one TH set has to play many other games. Something that was much more difficult when buying the same priced stashes of one color.

In that way I agree with you.  Another attractive aspect that gets mentioned all the time is the scalable price.  You can buy one set for under $10 and later another...you don't have to fork over $50 on a boxed game that you might end up only playing a couple times then stuffing in the closet forever.  

I'm right now thinking about the Treehouse packaging and the impression it gives to the average shopper (BTW I adore the Treehouse pack design, right down to the graphics on the labelling).  I'm sure that a lot of pyramid sales probably come about through demos and word of mouth.  I those cases, the buyer is well aware that what they are getting is so much more than Treehouse but really a gaming system.  But with packaging as attractive as Treehouse's is, you're going to catch the eye of a lot of shoppers who know nothing about 'mids and the games played with them.  If you imagine you are one of these shoppers and you pick up one of your Treehouse sets and scan the packaging, you'll realize you're not going to get the impression from the packaging that it is anything more than a cool little game by itself. 

Although the fourth side of the tube is reserved for showing off the colorful pieces, I feel there should be some prominent item on the package which mentions that Treehouse is only the beginning, how Looney Labs has published rules to more than a dozen other great games to be played with the pieces you are getting.  This is where Playing with Pyramids can help inform the buyer, and I realize it will usually be displayed along with TH sets, but on principle it seems to me you shouldn't have to first become aware of a second product (a book) before you can become aware of features of the principle product (the versatility of the pyramids).   It should be the other way around: the Treehouse packaging should inform the buyer about the other products (the books and booklets) which give them the rules to other great games that can be played with the product they have in their hand.  I know that the online store already does a good job of this on their Treehouse page, but I am really thinking about a first-exposure in-store scenario here.  And maybe my thinking is wrong here. 

Interesting issue.

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