160: Using Paid Ads to Boost Product Sales and Scale a Business

160: Growing Your Hardware Product Through Paid Ads

January 26, 2023

With Daniel Bischoff, Former Head of Growth at Purple Mattress

Hosted by Kevin Mako, President of MAKO Design + Invent

160: Growing Your Hardware Product Through Paid Ads
160: Growing Your Hardware Product Through Paid Ads

Daniel Bischoff, who previously served as the Head of Growth at Purple Mattresses, successfully spearheaded the company’s growth from its inception to generate over $200 million in sales within the first two years. After this accomplishment, he established his own direct-to-consumer marketing agency, StoicYeti, which collaborates with hardware startups and Fortune 500 companies. During this session, Daniel will provide valuable advice to inventors, startups, and small-scale manufacturers on the topics of direct-to-consumer advertising, expanding a hardware brand, and developing compelling yet cost-effective video advertisements to introduce new inventions to the market.

Today you will hear us talk about:

  • Selling a new hardware product directly to consumers requires paid advertising to succeed.
  • Crafting a compelling story is an essential aspect of digital marketing.
  • The Purple Mattress story exemplifies how inventors sought to improve a mattress by utilizing a model from another company.
  • Sometimes, uniqueness can be enough to sell a product, even if it is not necessarily superior.
  • Effectively demonstrating a product’s value through video is critical for successful online sales.
  • Kickstarter was employed by Purple Mattress to confirm sales and test their marketing strategy.
  • To grab people’s attention quickly, strive to hook them within the first 3 seconds of the video.
  • Experimenting with various hooks can help determine which resonates best with your target audience.
  • Make potential customers aware of their problems and then present your solution.
  • Positive reviews on Google were acquired by Purple Mattress to reinforce their ads.
  • To increase conversions, it’s crucial to gain as many users as possible initially and then reach out to all customers to identify raving fans.
  • Encouraging customers to submit reviews via their cell phones while utilizing the product can be advantageous.
  • Preparing responses on your website to address objections to buying your product can aid in anticipating and addressing concerns.
  • Having a clear problem, solution, reasons to believe in your product, and an answer to objections are necessary for success.
  • Employing inexpensive videos to test your messaging can be a cost-effective approach.
  • User-generated content is among the most effective advertising strategies currently available.
  • Despite popular belief, advertising a new product is cheaper today than ever before.


  • 1:25 – Worked to grow Purple Mattress sales from zero to hundreds of millions of dollars in sales, all direct to consumers online.
  • 4:35 – If you’re looking to develop a product for an industry, sometimes it actually helps for another company to lead the way in the industry to educate the market, then you can come in and release a better product to take market share and also increase that new market, but without having to have done the heavy lifting of forging the new market path.
  • 5:40 – Casper didn’t create a new product, they created a new way to get a product you already want to you in a new and more convenient way.  What Purple did was to follow the Casper path, but to make a better product.
  • 6:30 – Create a better mouse trap
  • 7:20 – If you’re launching a product, sometimes all you need to be is just different than what exists to be able to market your product effectively.
  • 8:00 – Use video form to demonstrate the key feature of your product.  This is the most powerful thing you can do to sell your product online.
  • 9:00 – Started selling via Kickstarter with a cheap and simple video showing just the main features of the mattress.
  • 9:05 – The investor just wanted to see 200 units get sold in order to invest big money into the idea.
  • 9:20 – They did $200,000 in their one-month campaign on Kickstarter, and within a month after that, were doing $200,000 per day.
  • 9:30 – Hired a small celebrity to do a video for their product.
  • 9:55 – Do multiple video hooks to capture people’s attention, then test that out which of those quick few second hooks is working the best to grab the customers attention.
  • 11:00 – Use video to make someone aware of a problem that they might not even know that they have.  Then show how your product solves the problem. 
  • 12:35 – Within 3 seconds, captivate the audience
  • 13:30 – Keep tweaking your advertising over time, keep making your ads better than the ad prior.
  • 14:00 – Get some reviews up on Google so that people will check that to validate your ad, after seeing and being interested in what your ad is selling.
  • 15:00 – It is easy to get reviews as a hardware startup as you can reach out to all of your first customers to figure out who the fans are, and ask those fans to write a review about your product.
  • 15:30 – First-time buyers of new brands are very excitable and easy to convert to raving fans, especially at the point where you deliver the product you promised to send them.
  • 16:00 – An extremely powerful review platform is to get actual customers talking about the brand story even just from their cell phone.
  • 17:00 – If you have a high ticket price, it takes more touch points and getting over more objections to convince someone to buy.
  • 18:00 The key structure to your ad: Problem, Solution, and Reasons to believe in the product, and overcoming buyer objections.
  • 18:45 – Hardware startups can tweak and try simple videos quickly, where big corporate moves slower on testing different ad messaging.
  • 19:20 – Sometimes you can have more viral videos with cheap videos that are authentic than big budget videos that are a one time shot.
  • 20:15 – It’s easier than ever, and more valuable than ever, to put cheap videos online, and right now it’s more powerful than high quality branding videos.
  • 21:00 – Authentic founder videos are easy, cheap, and powerful in order to sell a new hardware product.


Daniel Bischoff Links:
LinkedIn | Website

The Product Startup Podcast Links:
Instagram | LinkedIn | Facebook Page | Facebook Group | Pinterest | Twitter | YouTube

PTC Links:
OnShape | Creo

Mako Design Links:
YouTube | Instagram | LinkedIn | Facebook | Pinterest | Twitter

Kevin Mako Links:
Instagram | LinkedIn | Quora | Facebook | Twitter

Partner: PTC’s best-in-class software solutions Onshape: The only cloud-native product development platform that delivers full-featured computer-aided design (CAD), integrated product data management (PDM) and enterprise analytics in a single system, and Creo: 3D CAD solution that provides designers with the most innovative tools to build better products faster, such as generative design, additive manufacturing, real-time simulation, IIoT, and augmented reality.