Thank you for the call and all the great feedback. It’s wonderful to get some constructive thoughts on how to improve the proposal.
We especially appreciate the discussion around the value of making the MakerDAO Shop a CU vs some kind of transactional relationship where the shop rents the URL from whichever CU manages the website. It’s an important topic to explore and we’re flexible to work with the Community using its preferred model.
If the Community deems a transactional relationship to make the most sense, we’d appreciate a nudge in the right direction as to who to chase for that info. Will the Growth CU control the content on MakerDAO.com? Is it the marketing CU? Any guidance will be very much appreciated.
To answer a few of the questions posted above:
Control of branding:
As a CU, we’d be able to work with the Facilitators to understand the most up to date messaging/branding and could create, implement and promote items that are aligned with objectives and goals of the project… across CUs. For example, if there is a big push to recruit devs, we could create (or use) their specific branding and messaging to target that audience.
If it is determined that we should have a more transactional relationship, I’d expect we’d take guidance/feedback from the specific CU with which we are transacting. Regardless, we will always use officially supported logos and imagery, to ensure we’re driving value to the brand and customers.
Cost to monitor:
Part of what we were hoping to achieve from the discussion was a better understanding of the terms and conditions (including reporting) set by the project. It was very clear from today’s call that the simplicity of offering the protocol a set URL rental fee or funds per item sold is much preferred to a percentage of profit or revenue. If this means amending the original proposal, happy to do so.
Lack of Guidance:
To be honest, we have no idea what to expect by way of demand as we have not had a chance to fully launch and promote the store. Based on anecdotal evidence, we anticipate a lot of enthusiasm from the community of Maker and DeFi fans.
The preferred model would be to test our way into the information, which is partially behind the initial offer of a 50% split in profits. As for pricing, we would test our way into the “sweet spot” there as well, using competitive project shops and sales numbers to fine tune the final price.
Our understanding is that all CUs are temporary and flexible, so we anticipated a bit more of an appetite to partner and test to find the perfect price.
Who is the customer?
Anybody who wants to support the Maker project or Dai by proudly wearing branded items. That can take the form or individual consumers, groups, other CUs, partners, investors, event attendees etc.
Simply put, if people want to wear our merch, we want to make it drop-dead simple for them to receive well-designed, great quality items.
From our time at the Foundation, we know that Team/Functional leads loved the simplicity of having the Marketing team manage the process related to getting merch (design, production, shipping, etc). We expect the same to hold for the Community, but there is no expectation for CUs or their teams to use the MakerDAO Shop to get their promotional gear.
Per our note above on testing, we’d pivot our promotional activities based on where we’re seeing demand.
How does this add value? (we added this question)
From a net revenue perspective, it’s hard to see how even the most successful merchandise store will beat other income streams for the protocol, but don’t feel that is the only measure that matters. As a way to drive awareness, drive engagement, and drive goodwill among myriad groups of people (fans, investors, partners, etc) a shop like the one proposed is a proven tactic.
At the end of the day, our proposal for the MakerDAO Shop is intended to create a great experience for people looking to rep Maker and Dai via high-quality branded items. Full stop.
To the question of if this needs to be a CU or not, we’d love to work with the Community to find the perfect model. Based on the information available to us and the feedback we got through the MIP process, we figured this was the best path forward. If that’s not the case, let’s work together to figure out how to move forward. If that means simply “renting the URL” and not being a CU then let’s figure out what that looks like. And who knows? Perhaps the debate and discussion around “to CU or not CU” the MakerDAO Shop will result in more clarity and direction for future teams looking to work with the project.
There’s a lot of momentum for a store like this considering the size and enthusiasm of the Maker Community and the pent-up demand for a shop like this. We (Coulter and Mike) have the skillset and experience to capitalize on it for the Maker project. We’d love to do our part!
Given the significant number of unknown items, we recommend testing our way into the perfect product mix and price points.
If the community feels otherwise, then please provide other guidance for us to do so.
TLDR: The idea of a flat rate to rent the URL is probably the easiest and most straightforward. The shop pays the DAO to use shop.makerdao.com with a 3-month runway to shut down (if voted by MKR holders in the future). So we’d ask the community to provide what that rental number is, and how we need to amend the proposal (if necessary).