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Fail Fast and Fail Cheap

How a New Approach to Failure Just Might Be Your Fast Track to Success

FAIL. Now that’s an ugly 4-letter word.

We’ve been conditioned our whole lives to do everything possible to avoid failure. From school to work to play, everything comes down to winning and losing. We learned to work hard to succeed, and if you don’t succeed, well, you aren’t trying hard enough. Of course, we have heard the “if you fail, just pick yourself up and try again” line, but how many of us really live by that advice?

Before you read any further, throw everything you learned in the past away.

We need to fail to succeed. It’s that simple. But here’s the catch–once you fail, you need to do it fast. And you need to do it cheap.

So what do we mean by “failing fast and cheap?” Well, in business for example, people normally create a product or service that is almost 100% complete and send it out into the market. They think they have everything figured out, know exactly what people want, and are confident it will be a smash hit.

Trust me, you don’t know anything about anything until you test it.

If you discover any fatal flaws in your product after you’ve released it to the market, it’s already too late to change it. By that time, you’ve already exhausted all of your resources and spent all of your money. When failure comes to your door, it doesn’t knock. Rather, it huffs, and it puffs, and it blows your house down.

The key here is to generate an idea that is 50% right, and then let your customers tell you what you did wrong. That way, you can learn from your mistakes, make any necessary changes, and hit the ground running with a new-and-improved, customer-researched product.

Extra nugget: Click here to see this interesting video about failure.

How We Learned From Failure

We are no strangers to failure. In fact, we made a lot of mistakes in the beginning. Here are 3 mistakes we made (and how we succeeded from them)

Mistake #1: We placed healthy products next to unhealthy products inside of vending machines.

The unhealthy foods & drinks just cannibalized the healthy ones due to their lower pricing & more recognizable brands. Nothing influenced or motivated the average customer to choose the healthier goods. Talk about money down the drain!

Lesson #1: We refuse to allow our healthy vending machines to be filled with ANY unhealthy products thus maximizing sales, profits, & positive dietary influence.

Mistake #2: We used the same “coil” vending machines as everyone else & added no attractive features

Bad idea! It’s one thing to sell junk food out of brown, inanimate machines that are clunky to use & unappealing to approach. But it’s an entirely different thing to use these same machines to sell premium healthy foods and beverages while also trying to make a positive, emotional connection with the customer. Our machines shouted “Junk that makes you feel bad sold here” instead of “Better your life today!” and, therefore, it didn’t matter what products we were selling.

Lesson #2: We make sure our state-of-the-art, proprietary vending machines include new technologies such as conveyor belts (NOT coils), digital video screens, robust remote monitoring that texts you inventory alerts, and touch-screen LCD displays in order to improve the customer experience, which directly boosts sales & profits.

Mistake #3: We put products in our machines without adequately testing them for consumer acceptance.

This one really hurt! We simply stocked our machines with all of the products we liked & knew, not understanding that different people have different product preferences. By not realizing the great importance of customizing product offerings per location, we ended up throwing away tons of products that didn’t sell and paid a huge opportunity cost along the way because of it.

Lesson #3: We require that all products are taste-tested, nutritionally- screened, and sales-verified before gaining placement in our machines, and also make sure that every single product mix is customized per location with no exceptions.

You see, we have learned to fail FAST and fail CHEAP. Failure is necessary for any successful business.

Best in health,

Sean & Andy

Founders, HUMAN Healthy Vending

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Featuring Our Outdoor Vending Machine

The “Rugged HUMAN” Offers Premium Vending Service, Rain or Shine

Whether you’re out camping in the wilderness, hiking the mountains, or taking long walks on the beach, The “Rugged HUMAN” serves all your vending needs (wait a minute…is this eHarmony?)

Check out the specs!

The Fort Knox of Vending: “Ruggedized” design that is built to withstand the elements. Rain. Shine. Anywhere. Anytime.

Advanced Insulation: Keeps your products cold while reducing energy consumption…talk about killing two birds with one stone!

Vend-Sensor Technology: No more banging the vending machine like a mad man to get your money back! Strategically-placed infrared sensors virtually eliminate misvends

Self-Diagnosing System: Clears vending errors automatically. Just when you thought brawn AND brains was an oxymoron.

Increased Versatility: Uses conveyor belt-dispensing technology, not coils, which greatly increases versatility and capacity

Cash/Coin Validator: Can be upgraded to any form of cashless payment (Credit/Debit)

As you can see, Vending 2.0 is here! The Rugged HUMAN has got you covered, wherever you may be. Ask about our coffee vending services as well!

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HUMAN Opens its Doors at New Office and Showroom Location

Come Visit Us on the Beach!

That’s right, we’ve moved! HUMAN Healthy Vending Headquarters is situated right in the heart of Santa Monica, CA, which is one of the nicest cities in the United States.

Come see us…we LOVE visitors!

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skelly

Biomedical Engineer who earned his degree from The Johns Hopkins University & Columbia University. Named one of Forbes’ Top 30 Under 30 in 2013. Co-Founded America’s first Pure Play healthy vending company in 2003.
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