People come up with great ideas for new products everyday but very few turn them into a profitable business. Here’s how you can turn your idea into a new invention that sells.
Have you ever had a lightbulb moment that you believe could make you millions? If so, it’s important that you proceed with caution so that your idea doesn’t get into the wrong hands.
Whether you want to take your invention to market yourself or license it to another company, you need to make sure that no one steals your idea first.
To help you, here is a guide that will help you turn your idea into a new invention that sells.
Today, having an idea doesn’t mean anything if you can’t prove that you were the one who originally had it. This means that you have to start documenting all your thoughts from the moment you have that eureka moment.
When it comes to good invention ideas, you should write down:
- What is is
- How it works
- How you want to make it
- How you want to market it
The first step to learning how to invent something is to keep it safe. Keep all your notes in an inventor’s journal and ask a witness to sign and date it.
Your journal should have consecutive pages with numbers. Also, you should not be able to remove and reorganize the pages in your book.
Don’t Try and Do Everything Alone
The invention process is long. No matter what you are inventing, it requires various types of expertise. Some of these include but are not limited to:
- Market research
Doing everything on your own could take time. It could also cost you a small fortune.
With this in mind, partner up with someone. If that’s not an option for you, seek advice from various professionals. For example, Industrial Polymers can help people with product development and manufacturing.
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Do Your Research
Good invention ideas need a lot of research. Here are some of the areas you should look into:
- Your competition
- What your target market likes
- What your target market doesn’t like
- What your target market is looking for
You have to set marketing targets before you launch your product so that the development of your idea falls in line with your end goals.
You also have to think of patent protection for your idea. When looking at patent protection, you have to research your competition to ensure that you’re not infringing on someone else’s Intellectual Property (IP). You can find out more about this on the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) website.
If you have questions about your invention idea or need to know if it is legal, get advice from a lawyer specializing in IP law.
Develop a Business Plan Around a New Invention
Even if your idea isn’t in full swing yet, you should create a business plan. Before you can move forward you need to know how much money your invention is going to cost.
You also have to think about ways in which you’re going to fund its creation. This funding should cover your development costs as well as the cost of marketing your idea.
Start With a Prototype
Before you can file a patent, you have to create a prototype.
Your prototype should pull in all the notes you’ve made in your inventor’s journal. It should show the size, features, and functionalities your product has.
The prototyping stage will show you any flaws in your original design. It will also help you come up with new and improved versions of your idea.
If you discover faults or new features after you file your patent, it will be too late to add them. You could lose the patent rights. You may also have to file a new patent which can cost a lot of money.
When prototyping your invention, take the following steps:
- Sketch out all your ideas
- Create a mockup 3D model of your design
- Create a fully functioning version of your design
If you cannot prototype your idea, create a computer-animated prototype. This is often the case when the prototype costs too much money or is too large to make.
File Your Patent
There are two types of patents available to chose from, a design patent and a utility patent.
The design patent is for manufacturing designs and the utility patent is if you’re inventing a new machine, for example.
You can undertake the patenting process on your own. That said, before filing it, you should get a patent professional to overlook your application. They will ensure you haven’t forgotten anything.
If you do forget a key piece of information, your competition could find a loophole that allows them to copy you in the future.
Test Your Product and Ask for Feedback
Your product will not be perfect the first time around. You will have to make some changes to your invention along the way.
The best way to test your product and get feedback is by giving it to real consumers. You have to become part of industry conversations and find out what your customers want to achieve by using your product.
Once you get close to the end of the beta testing phase, try selling a few of your prototypes. This is a great way to gauge consumer demand.
This process can only lead to improvements and could come in handy when you start speaking to investors.
Look for Investors
Now that you know people want your product, it’s time to find some investors willing to pay for manufacturing and deployment on a large scale.
During this phase, you can look for one or two private investors with large amounts of money.
Or, you can go down the crowdfunding road. There are various crowdfunding websites you can choose from, some of which include:
Another option is to look for angel investors or you could ask friends and family with disposable income.
Get More Small Business Tips
Turning your idea into a new invention is about more than that eureka moment. You have to be ready to put in the time and the work to take your idea from conception to realization.
If you want more advice on how to create a product that sells, visit us online at Small Business Brief today.
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