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My Invention Journey

My ‘aha’ moment occurred in the shower one morning in 2002 – an epiphany for a slim wallet to hold many cards yet remain flexible and comfortable. I quickly built a crude prototype and discovered the idea could indeed be a real product, a better wallet. The dream of a ‘million dollar product’ burned in me like a flame: I vowed to do whatever it took to make my product successful.

Things didn’t go very well for me for a very long time:  my customers loved my wallets; but key corporate decision makers told me  ‘it’s just another wallet.’ I spent many years pursuing my dream,  I almost lost everything. After 13 years I was frustrated and exhausted – having devoted the last 5 years to pursuing DRTV (direct response television). I was ready to finally give up and ‘get a real job’.

Then, something magic happened.

I found one person in DRTV who believed in me and my slim wallets. This executive was willing to take some financial risk in my invention – he agreed with me that my slim wallets could work for television, and was willing to spend money to test it.

We were both right and we both hit the jackpot: Wonder Wallet has been a huge commercial success on TV and retail stores everywhere selling over 1 million wallets in the first year. It is amazing what can happen when you have one key advocate willing to bet on your product.

 

My Turn to Help You

Success brought a lot of good things my way. I paid off my debt and took some nice vacations: two trips to Hawaii, a trip to Australia for 3 weeks, and two weeks in Peru with my children.

There are thousands of inventors just like me who have great retail-ready products but who need just one advocate, one person to believe in them and help move their products forward to commercial success. My mission is to help as many inventors in as many ways as I can. I believe that with a little nurturing and success, independent inventors will create far more wealth and new jobs than most Fortune 500 companies.

I want to be your advocate.

How can I help? There are three key – 3 modules – I provide to help inventors:

Module 1 – Advice and Information Across the 4 Phases of the Inventing Journey:

I tap 15 years of experience as an inventor to provide you with actionable advice and information  that I wish I had known when I started my inventing journey.

My primary business goal is to find inventors with retail-ready products and to help them to get their products licensed (see Module 3 below).

But, I am happy to help you, no matter which of the 4 phases shown below your product is in, at no charge. That’s right, my advice is free.

Phase 1 – Product

  • How to evaluate your idea
  • Research – is it already out there?
  • Prototype – get help or DIY
  • Patent strategies – protect IP without going broke

 

 

Phase 2 – Plan/Paths

  • Build a business around your product
  • License your invention
  • Commercial paths:
  •    Catalog or eCommerce sales
  •    Retail stores
  •    HSN/QVC
  •    DRTV

 

 

Phase 3 – Partners

  • Prototypers
  • Product reps
  • Marketing/licensing assistance
  • Patent attorneys/agents
  • Manufacturers

 

 

Phase 4 – Production

  • Finance options
  • Manufacturing – US or overseas
  • Packaging of your product
  • Placement – where should you sell?

 

 

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Module 2 – Ideas to Wealth – Webinars for Inventors

I am developing webinars for inventors called Ideas to Wealth – designed to provide detailed information and guidance across the 4 phases of inventing: Product, Plan/Paths, Partners, and Production. Ideas to Wealth will feature live webinars, in-depth how to information on many topics including:

  • How to work with manufacturers in China
  • How to do a free detailed patent search for your product
  • How to prep like a pro before going on air at QVC or HSN
  • Licensing agreements – strategies to land the best deal possible

I am seeking input and ideas from inventors like you to tailor the webinars to fit your needs. The first webinar, to launch on 11/15/17, is called LAUNCH – tailored to help inventors get off to a great start and to achieve success much more quickly.

Please click below for all the details:

 

Ideas to Wealth Video – Cusco, Peru

Ideas to Wealth Video – Machu Picchu

Module 3 – Licensing Agent for Inventors with Retail-Ready Products

Thousands of inventors spend years working hard and taking risks to develop their raw ideas into workable inventions and finally retail-ready products. Unfortunately, most of them never find that key partner willing to help them over the final hurdle to achieving commercial success. For them, the dream ends with the quiet counsel of a spouse or trusted friend: it is time to move on meaning your dream is over. I truly understand because that very nearly happened to me.

My mission is to leverage what I have learned – to be that key partner to help the inventor to finally realize the dream of seeing their product on TV and in retail stores across the US and Canada. Who can I help and how can I help?

I can help inventors who have retail-ready products that meet the following criteria:

  • Patent-pending – preferably on a utility patent
  • Solves an annoying problem that affects millions of consumers
  • Can be cost-effectively manufactured and sold for at least a 4X markup at retail

I help by serving as a licensing agent to the inventor. I represent his or her product to potential licensees – manufacturers – with a goal of executing a licensing agreement in exchange for royalty payments based upon product sales. The inventor pays me nothing unless we achieve a successful licensing deal for the product. Then I share in a portion of any royalties paid to the inventor going forward.

None of this is easy and success is never guaranteed.

The reality is in most cases I am unable to assist the inventor due to a variety of circumstances. Niche products are difficult to license because retail is best suited for products with broad-based demand. Seasonal products are hard sells simply because they cannot be sold year round – making them riskier to manufacturers and harder to license. In other cases either I don’t see a way I can help or I don’t see a clear path forward to a licensing deal.

However, I have licensed my own products successfully and am currently working with inventors with good prospects for achieving success. Even in circumstances where I cannot help the inventor directly, I am often able to direct them to a resource that can benefit them.

For more details and information contact me directly – alan-beckley@msn.com.