Who are you?
Wiggity Bang Games was founded on the belief that a sense of humor is the key that unlocks the universe. With that in mind WBG created the original version of Quelf, the board game, in 2005. We have since gone on to create many new games, win dozens of awards and receive many accolades.
Why Did you start your business?
There were three of us that started the company, Jeremy Fifer, Matthew Rivaldi and Robb Earnest. We just thought that the world needed a really really funny random board game. We sat down in a bar one night, mapped out the business plan on a napkin and got to work! None of us quit our day jobs... at least not right away.
What makes your business unique?
We don't do things the normal way. In 2005 when we went to the New York Toy Fair and started pitching "QUELF" the board game, we had at least half the buyers look at us, shake their heads and walk away confused. But a few buyers got it and they bought it. And it sold... a lot.
What's the biggest mistake you've made with your business and what did you learn from it??
I'll speak for this one. When I, Matthew Rivaldi, first started selling our board games, my biggest failure in business was not pitching the game directly to retail game buyers. I was a little intimidated to show my creative work to be possible rebuked by these buyers. Instead I relied on a few distributors to do the work. That was back in 2008 and unfortunately, the economy tanked and one of our biggest distributors went bankrupt. WBG lost a lot of cash in that process... it was a pretty depressing time, but it turned out OK, as I was forced to make the connections myself with the retail companies.
Through that process I learned that, if possible, go direct to the buyer. They are humans just like me and you. And I’ve become more emotionally mature if a buyer doesn’t put our product on the shelf. It's usually nothing personal, it's just not a good fit for THAT retailer. Today if a buyer doesn’t buy our product I don’t take it personally.
what big goal do you have for your company and how do you plan to achieve it?
Sell a million games... But it's not really the selling the millionth game that we like, it's the process of thinking of the game idea, pitching it and connecting with each user as an experience. Our goal is to enjoy the ride.
How do we plan on achieving that? One customer at a time.
what advice or tips do you have for people wanting to start their own business or follow their dreams?
Take it one step at a time, but don't forget to take the first step... and the second, and the third...