We’ve seen the commercials on late night television. We’ve read the magazine advertisements. Achieve inventing success! A single company can take your idea and make millions! Have you ever been tempted to contact one? It seems so easy and so straightforward.
Hundreds of these companies exist. I’m not sure if their intent is truly evil, but the result often is. Please, be wary of any company (or really even, any person) who claims that they are a “one-stop shop” or can do it all for you. That’s an unrealistic and deceptive goal. Inventors often dump thousands of dollars down these enterprises, only to realize that they could have done a much better job themselves.
These companies may promise to submit your idea to companies, but they may submit it along with hundreds of others or in enormous contests. They may be a complete fraud. If you want to read first hand accounts of inventor’s experiences with invention promotion companies, visit inventored.org.
Realize: no one is ever going to be as excited about your idea as you are. It’s yours! You have ownership. And you should try to excite people by letting them have some ownership in the success of your invention. But, it’s still yours. With ownership comes accountability and responsibility. No one person or company can do for your product what you can. So do your best to get all the information you can, from as many sources as possible.
Stephen Key is a successful award-winning inventor who has licensed
over 20 products in the past 25 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 ask questions and get advice on the inventRight forum, check out the resource center, and listen to the weekly radio show on inventing. Get In The News, list your invention to have media outlets find you for news stories.