I’ve spent the past several months developing a new product, a beverage called “s?yu”. This blog is the first in a series about my experience launching it into the marketplace.
As my readers know, my background is in licensing. But I’ve actually brought a product to the marketplace before. I created a line of guitar picks called “HotPicks”, which eventually sold in over 10,000 stores worldwide, including WalMart and 7-11. I never intended to manufacture and distribute the product myself, but the opportunity arose, and I seized it. The story of how I invented the Spinformation label is much the same. I didn’t set out to invent for the packaging industry, I just took advantage of a situation I thought was favorable and went with it. This is why it’s so crucial to study the marketplace: if you’re not aware of opportunities that present themselves, you’ll never be able to profit from them! I became involved in launching a new beverage because a friend of mine identified such an opportunity.
When I was working on the Spin label, I developed a number of relationships with people across the country. One of the people I met along the way was a woman named Marlen. Marlen worked in the beverage industry selling a low priced soda on the East Coast. Her specialty was New York City, where she lived. The idea to develop a new beverage was born out of a newspaper article. Marlen read that the New York City Department of Education was looking for new products to put in its high school, middle school, and elementary school vending machines. The Department’s previous contract with Snapple had expired and healthier beverages were desired to replace the former. The guidelines were specific: the beverage needed to be low in calories and have a great taste. The goal, fighting obesity and improving nutrition, appealed to Marlen as she was obese as a child. The opportunity was clear, as was her desire to fulfill it. And thus the project began.
Marlen called and asked me to become part of the team she was assembling because she felt that the Spin label could give the product a point of difference. I agreed. And suddenly, I was in the business of creating and launching a new beverage.
This blog series will continue in the next post.
Stephen Key is a successful award-winning inventor who has licensed
over 20 products in the past 30 years. Along with business partner
Andrew Krauss, Stephen runs inventRight,
a company dedicated to educating inventors about selling their ideas
and the skills needed to succeed. You can listen to the weekly radio
show on inventing. Get In The News, list your invention to have media
outlets find you for news stories.