In the previous blog – R – Resources, Find and Develop Them – I focused upon often-overlooked resources that arise from setbacks. Bad circumstances often yield valuable resources that can aid success in future efforts.
Let’s look at another sometimes-overlooked key to success – I – Invent Things that are simple and Low Cost.
Okay, inventing simple and low cost items seems like extremely obvious advice, so why would I label it as an “overlooked” key to success?
Over the last 5 years, many new inventors have come to me for consulting advice on their respective inventions. I would estimate that perhaps 60% of the ideas were complex, exotic “pie in the sky” concepts that would require hundreds of thousands of dollars to launch (or millions), assuming they could be distilled into practical products. Innovative new automobile engines and space planes that could launch from any runway were common themes. When I would ask them where they would get such substantial capital sums, they would smile knowingly and say “investors.”
So, to my experience, it turns out that inventing simple, low cost items is in fact an overlooked key to success.
There are two key paths to the marketplace with a new inventive product:
1. License the product to a company to manufacture, package, distribute it market it for you
2. Design, manufacture, package, distribute it and market it yourself
For a complex, expensive new product, the only possible path to market is 1 and few companies can justify the high risk versus uncertain potential reward of such a product. Most companies would pass on moving forward with such a product unless the upside potential is very great.
But, a simple, low cost new product is attractive to a licensee because the launch and development cost is low versus the potential financial payoff. Likewise, if you choose to “go it alone” you may be able to bootstrap the costs of prototyping, developing and launching your low-cost product from your own resources (see creative financing in the next blog).
The next key to inventing success is C – Creative Financing
B – Balance Risk versus Opportunity
R – Resources, Find and Develop Them
I – Invent Things that are Simple and Low Cost
C – Creative Financing