Becoming an inventor sounds great, right? After all, it means that you will design a completely new product that will potentially facilitate our everyday life, and you will probably have a chance to earn a lot of money. Achieving this goal doesn’t have to be so difficult, especially if you already have an idea of what you want to create.
On the other hand, even if you don’t, it still doesn’t mean that you should give up immediately. In the following article, we will provide you with some tips on how you can think of that great idea, and also, we will give you a list of steps you should follow to make your invention a reality.
Stick to an idea
Generally speaking, people who want to become inventors are creative, meaning that they probably have a million ideas. If you are one of them, then you know how difficult it can be to stick to a single design. Well, there is something you should do. Think of a problem that is worth solving. Is there something that annoys you or something that can be greatly be upgraded? Maybe it is an app you use on a daily basis, and you know exactly which new feature would take it to the next level. Maybe it is a new entertaining device. Maybe it is a kitchen item that will make cooking more enjoyable.
As you can see, it can be almost anything. The trick is to think of an issue that bothers you and the people around you. Then, you start brainstorming the ideas of how you can solve it and eliminate it.
Do market research
Now that you are focused on a single idea, you need to conduct research. No, the time to work on your design has yet to come. Before you do anything about it, and more importantly, before you invest any money into it, you have to make sure that a similar product isn’t already available on the market. You would be surprised to learn how often people believe they have a unique idea, only to learn that it isn’t that original.
There are numerous sources you can use. First of all, you can do an online search based on the description of your product. Then, move on to the stores that sell similar items. Even if you don’t find anything that is similar to your invention, there is still another place to check. Maybe some has patented a similar idea, but it still hasn’t hit the market. Due to this reason, you should go over the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office website, and you can also use Google’s Patent Search. When it comes to the former, there is even a short video guide on how to conduct the search.
Finally, you should also use the Internet to figure out if people are interested in your product. You can provide them with a vague description and see how they react to it. Moreover, if you need a third-person, objective opinion, you should explain everything down to the last detail. However, in order to protect your invention, you should have the person sign an NDA, which ensures all the information stays confidential.
Patent the idea
Upon completing all the previous steps, you can proceed with developing your unique idea, but nevertheless, you have to protect it first. Patenting a design is an expensive process, which can turn out to be a problem, especially you still haven’t finished researching the market. We have already mentioned the non-disclosure agreement, so we will move on. If you already have a name for your product, you should file for a trademark. You can do the same with the logo and slogan, and rest assured that no one will use the same name. If you are still not ready to invest in getting a full-patent status, you can file for a “patent pending” one. According to the law, you have one year to file for a nonprovisional patent, so you should start gathering documentation almost immediately. You can try to do this on your own, but if you would rather focus on developing your product, you can hire professionals such as InventHelp that will assist you on this journey.
Now, you have a choice to make. You can manufacture the product on your own and sell it or, on the other hand, you can license your idea. You should make this decision based on your skills and personality. If you already have some experience in the business world and believe that you can persuade people to buy your product, you can start a company and offer the item on the market.
If you were to go with this option, you would have to advertise the product. If you don’t have any experience in this line of work, you can start by using simple techniques, such as digital marketing. However, you will need to step up your game once the product is ready to hit the market. This is when you should think about hiring professionals.
On the contrary, if you don’t believe you would be successful, you can license the idea to someone else. Generally speaking, this is what most people choose to do. There are many reasons for this, but a lot of people aren’t ready to face the potential risk of their item failing on the market, and also, licensing the idea doesn’t require any investment. Still, keep in mind that you wouldn’t be able to earn a lot of money. Most contracts will get you between 2% and 10% in royalties, which is almost insignificant compared to the funds you would get if you were to manufacture and sell the product on your own.
Keep in mind that it may take some time to find the right company. It means that you will have to create a top-notch presentation to convince them that your design is worth their time and money. Naturally, you have to introduce them to all of its features and, at the same time, tell them how people can benefit from it. After all, it is what will make the item popular.