It is often said that new inventions fail 95% of the time.
I believe that new inventions fail 100% of the time!
Notice I put “inventions” in italics for a reason. Inventions fail 100% of the time because an invention is nothing more than a blueprint:
Idea + drawings + prototypes + filed patent = invention
Truly you cannot sell an invention just as you cannot sell a blueprint to a building; it is a concept but all of the working pieces are missing:
Invention + research + manufacturing + packaging + marketing + distribution = product development
Product development is required to take an invention and turn it into a sellable product.
As an inventor, your focus must be upon product development, not invention. If your goal is to succeed financially with your invention, one of two things must happen:
- You must develop the product so it can be sold profitably in wide distribution
- Someone else must develop the product so it can be sold profitably in wide distribution
1 above describes the scenario where you choose to undertake the whole venture, to build a business around your product. This path requires a total commitment of your time, financial resources, energy – it is draining, risky; and, more often than not, ends in failure.
2 describes a licensing situation where you license your IP to a manufacturer to manufacture, package, distribute and sell your product in exchange a small royalty payment to you as a percent of sales. Licensing agreements do not always proceed forward to success, but when you license, you have transferred all the risk to a much larger financial partner with far greater resources than you have.
No new product achieves success without someone fully completing the product development cycle. Inventions are little more than blueprints to be used to start product development.
Lastly, it is rare that a manufacturer will be so entranced by an invention (especially one that is patent pending only) that they will license it without there having been some market feasibility – i.e. sales done first. You must show them that this million dollar idea of yours is not too risky!