Instant Pot CEO Robert Wang on how his small pressure cooker company cultivated a rabid community of "Potheads."
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Who is Robert Wang? 00:44

He is the founder of Instant Pot. More than 5.5 million people follow Instant Pot related accounts on Facebook alone. People even make decals and knit sweaters for their Instant Pot.


What was the best selling non-Amazon product in 2018? 01:28

On Black Friday, Instant Pot was the best selling non-Amazon product on Amazon. According to Walmart, Instant Pot was also their best selling item in 33 states.


How can you build a successful community? 02:12

Community building comes down to shared ownership. It’s best to figure out what to do with your customers rather than do for them. Wang, the founder of Insta Pot, has created a collaborative and creative approach with his customers.


What was Wang’s opinion of his product? 04:50

He thought the problem wasn’t that it was going to be popular on the market, but that stores had limited coverage. The best way to let people know of his product was through online businesses.


Why was selling Instant Pot on Amazon the winning strategy? 06:02

Wang tried different marketplaces for selling his Instant Pot. eBay buyers were looking for bargain, so that wasn't a good long-term opportunity, meanwhile Amazon had massive scale, and was ready for a premium product.

Using Amazon, Instant Pot got national, and sometimes even international, which was obviously great for business. With it, they also got a lot of customer feedback, which they quickly implement back into the product, shipping a new version of Instant Pot every 12-18 months.


How did Wang attract his first few customers? 08:10

Wang says that offline brick-and-mortar stores did not want to carry Instant Pot and so going to sell online was a move out of desperation. He placed the product online since the term “electrical pressure cooker" was fairly new and SEO helped to drive traffic to his product.


How can you grow influencer marketing without paying a dime? 11:21

Although Wang did not have any budget for influencer marketing, bloggers approached Instant Pot because they've heard of the positive reviews. To return the favour, Wang enabled some bloggers with what he could - providing Instant Pot for free, for whatever they needed. Chef AJ was an early user who needed Instant Pot to create delicious healthy meals for her program, and while doing so, she'd advertised Instant Pot for free.


What is Wang’s insight on cooking? 16:34

One insight that Wang acknowledges is that cooking is not a solitary practice, but a social practice.


How did Instant Pot community get started? 19:59

The company needed a place to talk about Instant Pot. Email and Facebook Pages weren't a good place to do that, but Facebook groups ended up as the best choice to host a community and to create a buzz about the product.


What have customers used Instant Pot for besides cooking? 21:54

According to Wang, a customer used Instant Pot for an art project. Another customer used the product for planting during the winter. Wang loves the creativity of Instant Pot users.