In the previous post – E – Enhancing Your Ideas into Inventions – we discussed doing a search on various online resources and retail stores to see if there was anything already “out there” for either of the two product ideas:
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 assume that the two ideas above seem to be unique enough from competitors to further develop the inventions. Further research is needed at this point.
Consider which marketing channels or paths would be the best fit for your invention. Below are three key marketing channels that work for different inventions:
• Retail stores or commercial business buyers
• Home shopping networks – principally HSN and QVC
• Direct Response TV – DRTV
Retail stores can be a great way to get into the marketplace. Store buyers typically plan to pay about 45% of suggested retail, so you must have profit selling at such wholesale prices. Unfortunately, most retail stores no longer have any employees who know much about the product lines they stock, so the product must “speak” for itself.
Products that require explanation or demonstration typically fare poorly in retail stores but may do well on HSN or QVC. For success on either HSN or QVC, a product needs to have a wow factor, to be easily demonstrated, and to fit within one of their categories (identified on their websites). Your total time on air is likely to be about 5 minutes, so you have to be quick and concise in your presentation – demos are important.
Another television resource is DRTV – the short commercials you see late at night for a variety of products. DRTV is high cost and high risk – most campaigns do not succeed and TV media is expensive. A solid mark up of 5X from manufacture to retail is a must so all partners in the venture have profit. It must clearly solve a problem, must be dynamically presented and not seem similar to other products sold in stores. DRTV is great “back door” to get into retail stores; as ASOTV products have already been proven on television, so store buyers feel there is less risk.
Stay tuned for the next post – G – Getting a Plan for your Invention.