What sells yo-yos?


I’ve been thinking about this recently, and after the “plastic vs metal” discussion yesterday I thought maybe I’d post to see what others think. It used to be that a video would help sell a product - the manufacturer would put out a video highlighting the features of the new product and new tricks that could only be done with that product, and that would encourage buyers to pick it up. Nowadays it seems that most yo-yos being produced can do all of the latest tricks, so what does a company have to do to sell you on a product? There are some exceptions like the recent Hubstack Afterglow where it has a specific feature-set that doesn’t exist anywhere else (stacks+light-up), but really what differentiates one yo-yo from another now? What makes you buy One Drop over CLYW? YYF over YYR? Even within brands, what makes you buy a Benchmark vs Cascade vs Code 1?


Sponsored players play a huge role in advertising.


I get that, but why does that sell to you? If you were a fan of Dan Dietz for example, and you liked him when he was with One Drop would you keep buying his product now he’s on Yomega?


Besides seeing a video, I might check out the specs, the shape, the available colors, and the finish. If I go down the list of considerations, and they are appealing, it goes to the top of the list. Word of mouth helps too, so if people with similar tastes are enjoying something, and they let me know, it tends to get my attention even more. Social media helps with getting the word out too. I also think that things might sell easier when there is a void in the market, and suddenly, a manufacturer fills the void with a specific product. Further, I think “value” helps. When people are convinced that they are getting so much, for so little, the product may be even more attractive to buyers and pick up momentum. Any time a person gets something they are very happy with for less than they might have expected, they tell a friend. No better marketing than that.

I, personally, don’t usually set out to buy one brand over another. But some brands just seem to design yo-yos that appeal to me, based on the above listed criteria, more than others. So, for me personally, it varies.


Sure, if you liked the dietz you might think, “well, the dietz was good, so wouldn’t his new siggy be good?”


I hated the Dietz so I have not picked up a Prodigy. This remains bizarre to me because I actually really enjoy Yomega products and the Prodigy’s overall shape and design really appeals to me. I also really enjoy watching Dan throw, I just disliked the Dietz so much I can’t get its sour taste out of my mouth.

Hype sells yoyos, players sell yoyos, shape, weight, colorways sell yoyos. I look for colorways and usually rounded/more organic shapes.


Well the dietz was a bad example i guess lol


There are plenty of things that make them sell the product. These are
Called marketing skills. They hype the product up by making a video, tell you all the great things about it, offer you a fair price, and all of this in the effort to appeal to the buyer and hopefully sell the product. As for what you are
Saying that what makes me choose one company over the other, I would say hype pretty much. All the companies that are great are spoken of more often and their quality is known. So it might depend on each person but as for me this is what it is.


Well to me, is the color then comes the shape then the place it was made in for example some of the YYF products are made in china that why they are cheaper most of the plastic ones are Chinese i have nothing against plastic yoyos i just prefer yoyos that are not made in china.


It appears to me that two things contribute to the sale of yoyo’s. First is the hype from the manufacture and distributor displaying the size, shape and colorways. And second the discussions here on the Forums.
The best example I can think of is the new color combo for the Rally. It started with a manufacturers question and now there are many members eagerly looking forward to the new release.
That is how to sell.

(Bína) #11

I think this can be really specific on different markets. As Yoyofficer team member, I always look on our sales and it’s clear markets differ so much. USA, Japan, China, Czech Republic and Europe(it’s easier to look on Europe without Czech as one market, since local markets in countries are so small) are all completly different.

I dont buy yoyos anymore, but I can tell you how local market works, sinc I’m closely connected to local stores.

Now in detail about Czech Republic market( I will talk just about metal yo-yos):

Firstly, it’s about local stars, brand reputation and hype:

  • Anything coming from local brand supported by big name is great seller. That’s case of Barely Legal yoyo brand and Slusny NEST.

  • Signature model of local stars is big hit(Cliff, CZM8)

  • Big brands with local players on their team is always choice of many customers(Clyw, Yoyofactory)

Secondly, price /performance ratio

  • Czech kids dont have so much money, so biggest sellers are cheap metal yo-yos from established companies( YYF CZM8, Shutter, all Yoyofficer models, C3 level 6)

-Combination of low price and nice colours(again Yoyofficer and C3 Level 6)

Even thought Czech market is really big and still growing, not many brands sell so good:

  • Some brand should be great seller in theory, for example Duncan has cheap yo-yos and local team, but their yo-yos are not selling as much as rival models

  • Some big name brands with expensive models have big problem selling here, just because kids dont care about them and buy Clyw instead(Yoyorecreation, Turning Point, C3)

  • Smaller brands are quite ignored, maybe people just dont appreciate them enough(One Drop, Gsquared, crucial, X3)

If yo-yo is not from Czech Republic, people dont care about where it’s from. USA, Japan, China, Europe, people care about how it plays, not from where it comes.


I find it interesting that people (especially younger people without disposable income) are willing to spend $100+ on a product based on hype, color and shape? I guess in most cases that’s the only choice, there isn’t a local place where they can go and try different products. It’s such a niche market and it’s been a surprise to me since returning to the yo-yo scene that there are so many new (to me) companies making high-end metal product and they’re selling well enough that A) they’re still in business and B) they keep making more.

Speaking personally, I’ve never owned a CLYW, never owned a One Drop, a YoYoRecreation or YoYofficer or General Yo. They all started after I’d left the business (actually I think the Peak came out right as we were wrapping up Skilltoys.com). I’m hoping to go to MA States this weekend to try a few because even with disposable incoming I just can’t comprehend dropping hundreds and hundreds on different product to try and determine what I like/don’t like in this world of new metal. I do have a Rally coming today, my first OD product and I did buy that purely based on how well it is liked on this forum.


Hype sells.


The name Caribou Lodge yoyoworks.


The thing is, nowadays any yoyo will perform as objectively well as the next one. Sure, there may be minor differences in spin time, stability, etc., but most yoyos will still play very well. This is why things like hype, color, shape, weight, and size have become the driving force behind what sells a yoyo. Those have become the main differences in design.


Definitely will be keeping an eye on this thread.


THIS! The perfect example. A business man will be looking at the community of their product and will be looking for ideas to make their product sell better. Thank you Paul for the example.

anyway, here is my take, Hype, videos, colorways, team, cost.


I would break it into two categories.

  1. Physical
    Shape, Diameter, and Weight (weight is a huge one for most people), Colorway, media finish, and overall “feel” of the yoyo.

  2. Mentality
    Hype, videos, reviews, brand loyalty, and the classic “My favorite player’s signature”.

All of these things go into a thought process for most people. Some people prefer the mentality over the physical aspects and playability of a yoyo. That sums up my perspective of marketing yoyos.

Hope it helped out :slight_smile:

(Owen) #19

Cost is a big one; but an even bigger one is low cost without losing the quality of the yoyo. Hype is also a big one, and this I think comes from reputation and over-all feel of the company. Hype is kinda a weird thing to me and I don’t really understand it all that well, but whatever.

I think people like innovations in designs. For example, when the chief came out with its double rings people went crazy. Now every yoyo and its brother have double rings. People wanna see new and hip things in yoyos, so they can therefor be cool and hip by using those yoyos. People like reviews. Good reviews specifically. So send your yoyos to reputable reviewers! I almost never buy a yoyo without looking to see what other people have to say about it first.

What sells yoyos is just the yoyo is da//\n good.


Disagree there bud, cost is not an issue, well, not as most people imagine… CLYW throws sell out in no time, and at $150+, I would have been SHOCKED or in denial if someone said that to me a few years back.

Brand awareness, placement, timing and building hype (splash). CLWY, One Drop and some up an comers are taking the market because they have a strong brand equity. They can ask for more money than average but their products are top notch. They listen to the consumer, give what we are asking for, and have a tight hand on supply.

If you notice, the throws that have a large supply lose their luster pretty quick. Yeah, you can get a shutter, DM2 etc, but the ones they limit and control the releases, those keep a high demand.

There is no magic formula, it always needs to be tweaked and adjusted, but OD, CLYW and some others have their finger on the pulse.