In the previous post – C – Culling Your Ideas – we examined and culled 2 ideas leaving only two remaining for further consideration from the original list of five:

1. Special car cover that protects cars from damage from hail stones
2. A cork replacement that maintains optimum pressure and humidity for wines

Let’s take these raw ideas and develop them a bit to help determine which (if either) we should move forward with as an invention.

Regarding 1, what should be a reasonable retail price point?

Certainly a cover that prevents hundreds or thousands of dollars in hail damage could be worth $100 at retail, perhaps $200. A higher price than $200 would be a hard sell even to an auto dealership. If an exotic material is required (Kevlar, for example) the cost might be prohibitive. Also, there are many car sizes and shapes, but it would make sense to make the product line as simple as possible; perhaps 3 different sizes that could work for any personal car, truck or SUV. Further analysis and consideration might either give the idea a green light for development or result in striking it from your list.

Similarly with the cork replacement, start with a retail price point and again work backwards. A $20 price point might work; and, perhaps you could go to $30 at most. The latter point would greatly reduce the potential marketplace of buyers to higher income individuals who had fine wines. Next, is there a fairly simple device that could maintain a desired pressure (probably so) and humidity (more problematic)? It could be that the optimum humidity would result in any case if the pressure were optimal. Lastly, it is definitely possible that there are already lots of cork replacements on the market that already accomplish the goal of this product. This will be addressed further in the next post.

As you can see, creating and developing ideas into products is not a straight line: inventing is replete with starts and stops, barriers and work arounds.

In the next post, E – Enhancing Ideas into Inventions, we will flesh out the ideas into inventions – a prerequisite for products.