Inventors frequently ask me, “I’ve submitted my product idea to a potential licensee – how long should I wait before contacting them?” It’s a good question. But there’s no single answer because the submission process differs for each company.
Instead, ask about a company about its specific process when you submit your idea. What sort of time frame should you expect? How long will you (probably) wait before hearing from them? Do they review new product ideas on a weekly basis? Monthly? Yearly? Also, you might consider asking them what time of month or year is best for submitting ideas. If they only review new product ideas in December, and you’ve submitted your idea in February, you’re going to be waiting… and waiting. This is obviously a dramatic example, but you understand my point here.
I never send a company a package with a sales sheet (or any other type of information) without tracking that package. I want to be notified when someone signs for the package. However, it’s entirely possible that although my package has been received, it isn’t in the right hands. So I call the company after I know my product has been received to check that it has also reached the right person. And I make sure to state on the phone that I’ll be following up at a later date. Can you imagine waiting and waiting, only to realize that your package never even reached the right desk? Don’t wonder – confirm.
Then, after I’m familiar with how a company processes ideas, I put a date on the calendar to call them. In the meantime, make sure you’re prepared! Be ready for the call if they choose to make it. And in the meantime, submit to other companies and begin developing other ideas. Inventing is a number’s game – not a waiting game.
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 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.