Copycats Vs. Innovators

Copycats Vs. Innovators

  •  We kicked off March with a trip to the Work Truck Show in Indianapolis, Indiana. At this year’s show more than 60 exhibitors showcased new products. Innovation is what keeps industry alive, and on this particular trip we ran across an interesting  “new” product.  One particular exhibitor introduced an almost exact replica of the B&W Trailer Hitches Turnoverball™.


    We’ve been told that the best form of flattery is imitation. When it comes to trailer hitches we have to say that we feel truly flattered!  Nearly every gooseneck hitch on the market today uses elements we designed and patented about 20 years ago.  Fifth wheel hitches are incorporating features we designed.


     The truth is, truly innovating is difficult.  We believe that we truly innovated when we stepped back and ask ourselves “What do users of gooseneck hitches want?” and  “What would fifth wheel users want to change about current hitches on the market?”   As our owner, Joe Works says, "We believe in building innovative, high quality products that meet the needs of real users".  We think about you and how you work and live.  Then we design.


    As far as the copycats go, we’ve seen a lot of them enter the market over the years.  We’ve lost some sleep over it, too.  But ultimately, when you design a product from scratch, you know it in a way a copycat never can.  By looking at our hitches, do you know what grade of steel you should specify?  Do you know why the spacing of the bolts is the way it is?  Do you know what happens when a weld in a particular place is too cold?  Trailer hitches have to perform to keep our roads safe.


    Time has shown that customers see through it, they’re savvier than they’re given credit for.  Over 40% of our gooseneck hitch business is to repeat customers who love our design, sure, but also our brand that was built on years of doing things the right way.   So, for all you copycats out there, here’s a little advice:   put in the time and design something that solves problems for consumers and you won’t have to ride the coattails of a company that did. 


    Below: The Copy!