Is Your Invention Really Worth Money?
The basic idea of an invention is to make life easier, whether it’s for businesses, government institutions or the consumer market. Some ideas have generated billions in a short amount of time, and some have been laughed off as being a novelty.
Assuming you did you due diligence by checking, your unique invention idea may be what the world needs. On the other hand, it may be impractical from a financial standpoint and won’t make you any money. Receiving funding is probably the biggest barrier to getting your idea off the ground, so it better be good.
Looking For Feedback
While having an awesome idea seems great in your head, you need to step back and see how real people react to it. Not taking away from its value, some inventions come out at the wrong time, with the wrong business model or simply are impractical to scale. This is why you need to get feedback from a wide variety of people.
For example, you can look to niche communities like Reddit or Hacker news in order to showcase your invention or business model to the peanut gallery. Even if it may be nerve-racking, it is an opportunity to get unfiltered feedback on whether your idea is a good one or not. If experts/enthusiasts in your niche don’t like it, imagine what it would look like to investors.
As there is a saturation of similar inventions on the market, having unique ideas will garner more interest from enthusiasts and industry leaders. It would be a good start to browse through an invention database to see how unique it really is.
Getting Financial Backing
If you have an established business model and you’re confident the public will receive your invention idea, it’s time to start looking for funding. One way to go about it is to apply to venture capital companies, like Ycombinator or StartX, although you will be competing against serious startups at an international level.
You may also try to garner attention from investors or partner companies at expos, or have someone to do it for you. These types of events are held in pretty much every major city, although locations like New York, Las Vegas, San Francisco, or Chicago would be ideal.
Some invention types are more scalable when leased for royalties rather than trying to mass-produce a product for end users. As the licensor, the legal rights to the patent remain in your name or company while collecting “rent” from your licensees. This practice can be seen often in the tech industry, albeit being controversial.
This sort of business model is ideal if the initial costs of manufacturing, marketing, and legal compliance are too much to handle. Once amassed enough capital, you may even choose to do bigger things with your invention idea while retaining royalties.
The economic component is really the deciding factor in whether your invention will be discovered or not. You may go ahead and file a patent, have a use case, but it doesn’t necessarily fit in with the way the market goes. It should also be considered that your invention may be better off being sold by a well-established brand over your own startup.