As a father of three, Chris Pegula was fed up with the lack of masculine diaper bags. He knew there needed to be a less feminine bag that was a gender-neutral alternative to traditional diaper bags for dads (and utilitarian moms) to take charge of public diaper changes. He created Diaper Dude, a durable masculine diaper bag that dads would be more confident and feel more stylish wearing.
Celebrities such as Tom Cruise and Brad Pitt began carrying a Diaper Dude diaper bag. Talk show hosts such as Oprah Winfrey and Ellen Degeneres featured the bags on their shows, and Diaper Dude grew to enormous popularity. Chris even authored two books, “From Dude to Dad: The Diaper Dude Guide to Pregnancy” and “Diaper Dude: The Ultimate Dad’s Guide to Surviving the First Two Years.”
Diaper Dude was generating millions of dollars in sales, but suddenly, the business hit a steep decline. Retail buyers stopped purchasing the bags, and the company was in danger of shutting down with an overwhelming deficit. Could The Profit help Diaper Dude regain its place in the market?
Diaper Dude on The Profit
The Profit Season 5 Episode 14
Chris and his wife appeared on The Profit with the hope that Marcus could help them build their company into what they dreamed it would become when it was first started. The couple sat down with Marcus and reviewed their business. Together, they built a social media campaign and an umbrella company named True Dude. True Dude was associated with a nonprofit that ran a program called “Coaching Boys into Men.” 5% of Diaper Dude proceeds were to go toward helping that nonprofit program. Marcus found out later that Chris was struggling so much financially that he spent those proceeds trying to work his business out of debt instead of funding the “Coaching Boys into Men” program.
Although Chris was one of the original designers, he agreed to step aside, and he hired two new designers. The team brainstormed new products and extensions on the lines they carried. But ultimately, the new ideas and designs were never as successful as the originals.
Marcus took a look at the current products. When asking about the cost and material quality, he realized that the couple could easily spend a few dollars more to upgrade to higher quality materials, offering a better product to customers, and still have over a 70% profit margin.
Marcus understood the financial crisis Chris was in, and he understood the vision Chris had for his company. He offered $200,000 as working capital in exchange for 60% of the company. Marcus wanted to increase the volume of orders to the manufacturers to decrease the overall costs of manufacturing. The money they would save doing this could then go back into the products themselves, increasing their quality by upgrading both the fabric and zippers. Chris accepted the offer Marcus presented without countering, and they were off, putting Marcus’s plan into action.
To get into a new mindset, Marcus arranged for Chris and his wife to meet with a focus group made of dads. They picked their brains about what they would like in a manly diaper bag. This group gave them a strong starting list of features to consider: a wet/dry pouch, a clear pouch for notes, more compartments on the inside of the bags, and insulated bottle pouches. Armed with this information, Marcus suggested that Chris go back to the role of heading the design team. After all, it was his designing skills that launched initial business success. The only problem? Chris admitted he isn’t confident in design or his business anymore. This is something he has always struggled with, and it was something that was leaking into his business.
Marcus then decided it may be best to rework the social campaign. It initially failed because the company didn’t have a profit return. Because the promise to deliver funds to a nonprofit was never fulfilled, it damaged the Diaper Dude and True Dude brand. However, Marcus believed they could revisit the idea of working with a social campaign, but in a new light. They asked a group of people what “True Dude” meant to them. Nearly everyone that answered responded with “A guy who shows emotion” or something similar. However, no one could attribute the phrase “True Dude” with Diaper Dude as was initially intended by the company. They decided to rework the idea and launch an anti-bullying campaign, creating the No Bull Movement and donated 5% of proceeds to anti-bullying programs.
Marcus arranged a meeting with Overton’s store for Chris to pitch his product. It was clear that Chris was more confident pitching a better product and a clear social campaign. The meeting ended positively with Overton agreeing to sell Diaper Dude products in their stores.
Diaper Dude after The Profit
Even though the show landed on a positive note, it seems that Chris may still be struggling to get Diaper Dude out of the slump it was experiencing. The Diaper Dude website brings up a 404 page, meaning there is no current activity, and it may be down for good. There is also a No Bull Movement website that also results in a 404 page. The 404 pages do have a “We’ll be back soon” graphic, so while it’s not altogether promising, they may be still working on developing updated websites to go with their updated product.
Diaper Dude still has active social media pages, but the last Facebook posts are from months ago, suggesting it isn’t a reliable source of income or customer relations.
Although Diaper Dude was once found in stores such as Walmart, Target, Buy Buy Baby, Nordstrom, Babies R Us, and more, it seems you can only find Diaper Dude bags available on Amazon and eBay. There are limited stock and availability.
There is speculation that Diaper Dude and the quality it provided simply could not compete with other large scale diaper bag businesses creating less flowery, masculine bags over time.
Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is strictly informational; INSIGNIA SEO is not affiliated with Diaper Dude, The Profit, or any of their subsidiaries.