Top Three Mediums for Marketing Your Invention

If you have a niche product or service, the potential for profits is great. However, simply obtaining a patent doesn’t guarantee sales. In fact, less than two percent of patents issued ever made real money, according to idearights.com.  How can you effectively market your innovative idea? Consider the following top three mediums for marketing your invention.

  1. Online Marketing. Think beyond just setting up a basic website. Draft a complete Internet marketing strategy that includes search engine optimization, social media and e-mail.  Think strategically about your website. Design content that will attract potential customers, corporate partners and search engines. Have a “conversion” strategy and implement a method to track it. Consider Pay-Per-Click advertising to quickly generate traffic. Google AdWords and Microsoft adCenter are popular choices. Target specific social media sites and actively participate. Remember, an abandoned social media page can hurt your reputation. Lastly, integrate your various strategies. Have “like” buttons on your blog pages, so your followers can post links to your website from their social media pages. Post links to YouTube video from your social media page.
  2. Test the Market with a Preexisting Platform.  An effective strategy to get your product noticed is to test its marketability. Doing this will get you noticed and help you determine how “sellable” your product is. Craigslist and eBay are probably the easiest and fastest ways to get your products listed and attract potential customers. You can also set up a “store” through sites like Cafepress that allow more customization in the layout. You’ll still have to drive traffic to your “store,” but the e-commerce infrastructure will already be in place.
  3. Find a Partner. The easiest way to market your invention is to license it to an established company. They will facilitate marketing, production and sales, and you’ll get a percentage of the profits. Licensing deals vary, but generally the inventor gets to keep all the patents and rights. Search online for invention contests. Many companies actively seek new inventions to sell. Work your local network. Join business clubs, Chambers of Commerce or other organizations that will help you make the right connections. Cold-calling is sometimes effective, but having a personal connection can go a long way in getting your foot in the door.

When you do get to pitch your idea, be sure you make a good impression with professional designs. Contact us for your patent drafting needs.

How to protect your idea or invention

How to protect your idea or invention from someone else stealing it?  Oh, sure, you only told a few people about it…(just friends and a couple of co-workers and the mailman?).  You’ve no need to worry.  None of those people would do such a thing.  These are nice upstanding citizens! Besides, you thought of it first. Everyone knows it.

Well, here’s some news big dreamer, there very well could be some people on this earth who have more drive, albeit evil thoughts, than you!  As brilliant as you are, haven’t you heard the old saw, “The early bird takes the worm?”  You certainly would not be the type to steal another person’s idea.  Your mother taught you better!

In the face of greed and opportunity, some people will not think twice about stealing your idea.  If they act nonchalant when you tell them, don’t be surprised what can happen after they get home and get on the phone to their attorney brother in law who knows someone who knows someone.

So just keep talking about your great idea.  Feel around to see what people think.  Make a homemade prototype in your basement and see what the mailman thinks.  Yup…keep talking and doing absolutely nothing about actually seeing your brilliant idea through.

What you don’t know is that the mailman is tired of delivering mail and his feet hurt cause he’s got bunions.  After he patent’s his idea (your idea), maybe he’ll send you a letter from Hawaii complaining about sunburn and weak drinks.  In the meantime you can jump around all you want screaming that someone stole your idea, and get a really good lawyer (not your brother-in-law) who can hopefully prove it.

Contact us instead of spouting off your idea to everyone!  Try to get your invention off the ground and patented properly.  Sure, most of your friends are just like you.  They, too, will think you have a great idea and wish they would have thought of it. Most of these people though, are too busy (like you?) to go off and try to patent your idea before you ever will…..or would they?  Take your rickety patent drawing to us, and we will take your idea, and put it right into your hands. Then, someday soon, you can go right to the mailbox and start picking up checks.

Hiring an Industrial Designer

 

Do you have a great product concept that you want to make more commercially attractive?  Are you considering patenting your concept?  If you’d like to increase the probability of acceptance for your patent application or the quality of your product design, consider working with an industrial designer.  Hiring an industrial designer will help you refine the design of your idea and provide valuable assistance in the development of your patent application.

 

An industrial designer is an engineer that focuses on the appearance and use of a product.  An industrial design engineer is experienced in combining both art and science to create products that are both functional and aesthetic.  They can help you examine the functionality of your concept, and refine the efficiency and effectiveness of its operation.  Professional industrial designers occasionally work in teams because some have a stronger engineering background, while others have a more artistic background.

 

Using an Industrial Designer for Product Development

 

When you’re developing a concept for a commercial product, an industrial designer can:

 

  • Improve the aesthetics of the product or system by creating a look that is attractive and unique to your product and/or company
  • Improve the ergonomics of the product or system, making it easier and more comfortable to use.
  • Improve the usability of the product or system by simplifying the functionality or operation and reducing the required learning curve to use the product or system
  • Improve the marketability of your product or system by making it more attractive to potential buyers.

 

Using an Industrial Designer for Patent Applications

 

While an industrial designer can be a great resource for product development and helping you to create a product or system that is more commercially viable, an industrial designer can also be a valuable partner when creating patent applications.  Every patent application must include detailed descriptions and drawings of the invention, and all must be presented in a very specific format.  The descriptions and drawings have to convince the patent reviewer that your invention is novel, and the patent drawings have to reflect those claims.

 

Because of the specific formats and requirements for the description and drawings in a patent application, hiring an industrial designer that is intimately familiar with the patent application process can help to develop both the description and the drawings and improve the probability of acceptance of your application.

 

It’s often beneficial to hire experts to help you in your business to fill gaps in your in-house expertise, and hiring an industrial designer is no exception, whether you want to improve the overall design of your concept or whether you are filing a patent to protect your intellectual property.

Five Reasons Why To Patent Your Invention

Inventors are commonly encouraged to patent their inventions, but the patent process can take time and resources to execute properly.  Some inventors decide that the cost is not worth the effort, and forgo the process, without realizing the significant benefits that patenting their invention can provide.

 

According to the USPTO, The right conferred by the patent grant is, in the language of the statute and of the grant itself, ‘the right to exclude others from making, using, offering for sale, or selling’ the invention in the United States or ‘importing’ the invention into the United States.

 

Here are five reasons why it is important to patent your intellectual property:

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  1. To Protect Against Intellectual Property Theft – One of the main reasons to patent your invention is that it is very difficult to convert an idea to market without interacting with parties outside of your company.  You’ll have to share concepts with investors and manufacturing partners in order to commercialize your concepts.  By filing for a provisional patent on your design, you gain legal protection against the unauthorized use of your concept.
  2. To Protect Your Company’s Ability to do Business – To put it simply, if you don’t patent it, someone else will, eventually.  You could not only have competition in your market, but you could also lose the rights to compete at all.  If this happens, then all of the investment that you put into your business could be for naught and you could become entangled in costly legal battles.
  3. To Increase Market Position – By developing a patent portfolio for your company’s intellectual property, you will increase your market position by limiting the ability of other companies to compete in your specific niche.  This increased market position and reduced competition can result in an increase in return on investment (ROI) for your company.
  4. To Guarantee Your Ability to Charge Licensing Fees– You may never get to the point where you fully commercialize your concept, but there may be others that have the resources to make your ideas come to life.  This is where licensing can be a great benefit.  By patenting your design, you can license the patent to a partner company, who then invests in the commercialization.  Your company then earns licensing fees for the use of the technology.  Without patents, it would be legally difficult to transfer technology to a development partner.
  5. Patents Look Good on Paper – A patent portfolio is tangible evidence of the technical expertise and commitment to development that you have instilled in your company.  Investors and partners will perceive an increased level of expertise, quality, and innovation in your company, which could lead to increased investment.  Investors and partners will feel a sense of security knowing that you have protected your IP, which will in turn protect their investment.

 

Patenting a product design can take time and resources to complete, but the benefits that patent protection can provide to your company can far outweigh the investment required.

Why A Good Patent Drawing is Important

A picture may be worth a thousand words, but a good patent drawing may prevent a thousand frustrations. First-time patent applicants, who might accidentally omit something in the written disclosure of a patent application, should know that a detailed patent drawing can potentially save that application from rejection.

A good patent drawing is a drawing that is detailed enough to visually convey pertinent information about an invention, including information that might be missing in the actual written description.

If you are a new inventor, and you want your invention to pass without question, then consider broadening the scope of your application by including multiple, detailed and professional drawings with your filing.

The primary benefit of filing a patent application is to capture a filing date that can be used to demonstrate priority of your invention. In order to capture the full benefit of a filing date, a good patent application should completely cover all aspects of the invention and all permutations at the time the application is filed.

Simply stated, supplying multiple, but good patent drawings the first time can help expedite the patent application approval process.

Because the detail of the patent drawing is so important, having the work done by a professional patent illustrator is extremely wise. Using a professional is well worth the investment, because a professional is specially trained to deliver a good patent drawing…specifically, the type of detailed drawing that will correctly conform to ever-changing USPTO drawing standards.

Hiring a professional patent illustrator such as Inventia Patent Drafting is more affordable than you think.  Depending on the complexity of the drawing, charges typically range somewhere between $50 and $150 per sheet.

Compared to the potential cost of application rejection, the valuable time lost in re-filing, and the headaches associated with completely starting over….good patent drawings are worth every dime.

Why You Need a Professional Patent Illustrator

First time inventors often ask if they really need to hire a professional patent illustrator to draw their idea.  Hiring a certified patent illustrator is not only important to the success of your patent application, but a huge time saver…and headache deterrent for you. Career inventors and multiple patent owners agree: professional patent illustrators not only protect your design from USPTO rejection, but can often spot inconsistencies that an IP attorney might miss.

A professional patent illustrator is important because they make it their business to stay informed about current USPTO Standards for Drawings.  Those standards start with utilizing the most widely accepted drawing method: black and white line art.  Black and white drawings also known as line art must be used for patent drawing submissions.  Today’s professional patent Illustrators also use modern software to help them quickly create precise drawings that meet ink requirements while simultaneously adhering to other strict USPTO drawing standards.

For patent drawings to be accepted, they must also include:

  • Identification of the drawings: Identifying indicia should include the title of the invention, inventor’s name, and application number, or docket number (if any) if an application number has not been assigned to the application. If this information is provided, it must be placed on the front of each sheet within the top margin.
  • Graphic forms in drawings. Chemical or mathematical formulas, tables, and waveforms may be submitted as drawings and are subject to the same requirements as drawings. Each chemical or mathematical formula must be labeled as a separate figure, using brackets when necessary, to show that information is properly integrated.
  • Margins. The sheets must not contain frames around the sight (i.e., the usable surface). Each sheet must include top and left side margins of at least 2.5 cm., a right side margin of at least 1.5 cm., and a bottom margin of at least 1.0 cm., thereby leaving a sight no greater than 17.0 cm. by 26.2 cm. on DIN size A4 drawing sheets, and a sight no greater than 17.6 cm. by 24.4 cm. (6 15/16 by 9 5/8 inches) on 21.6 cm. by 27.9 cm. (8 1/2 by 11 inch) drawing sheets.
  • Views. Patent drawings must contain as many views as necessary to show the invention. They may be plan, elevation, section, or perspective views. Detail views of portions of elements, on a larger scale if necessary, may also be used. All views of the drawing must be grouped together and arranged on the sheet(s) without wasting space, preferably in an upright position, clearly separated from one another, and must not be included in the sheets containing the specifications, claims, or abstract.

There are many more specific USPTO guidelines including the arrangement of the views, scaling, symbols, and legends.  Still wondering why you might need a professional patent Illustrator?  Read the General Information Concerning Patents here, and contact Inventia Patent Drafting for help today.

Patent Drawings

Patent drawings are one of the key components of a patent application. Professional drawings help completely cover the invention and all permutations. Detailed patent drawings can save you if a key component or feature was accidentally left out of the written disclosure. The USPTO frequently views drawings in order to determine what was disclosed at the time the application was filed.

There are several key components to creating patent drawings that the inventor, patent attorney, and ultimately the USPTO find readable, understandable, and aesthetically pleasing.

A patent drawing must be accurate. It should reflect the form, surface finish, and material of the subject matter. A patent drawing must be clear. Certain elements of the subject may be omitted, phantomed, or sectioned for increased clarity. The composition must be pleasing. How the subject fills the space and the choice of viewing angle contribute to the overall effect. The drawing technique should be appropriate. Line weights, tone, and shading should relate to the scale, mass, and surface of the subject.

How many views?

There should be as many views drawn as needed to clearly disclose the invention and its novelty, i.e., front, rear, right and left sides, top and bottom. While not required, it is suggested that perspective views be submitted to clearly show the shape and appearance of thee-dimensional designs. For design patent drawings, if a perspective view is submitted, the surfaces shown would normally not be required to be illustrated in other views if these surfaces are clearly understood and disclosed in the perspective.

How should the patent drawings be prepared?

The drawings should be done in black and white, unless color is needed to illustrate specifics of the invention or idea. The scale should be large enough to show the mechanism without crowding when the drawing is reduced to size in two-thirds in reproductions. Patent drawings should be done on high quality paper that is strong and non-glossy. All sheets must be free from cracks, creases and folds. Only one side of the sheet may be used for the drawing. Each sheet must be free from erasures and free from alterations, overwritings, and interlineations.

This is why it is best to hire a professional draftsman to do this work as it can be difficult to do for those who are not experienced with scaled drawings, multiple views and patent office standards.

At Inventia Patent Drafting, we pride ourselves on working closely with our clients. From a simple trademark drawing to complex design drawings; we have the knowledge and experience to create patent drawings that will satisfy your needs and meet the stringent requirements of the USPTO and PCT. Patent drafting is a business, and like all other businesses, we survive by our reputation. We are extremely proud of the reputation we have earned in this industry. For more information please visit http://www.inventiapatent.com

Design or Utility?

There are two main types of patents granted by the U.S. Patent Office: design patents and utility patents.

Utility patents offer greater benefits than design patents.  Utility patents  protect the way an article is used and works.  Utility patents also allow many variations of the article to be claimed in one patent, making utility patents much more broad than design patents.  Utility patents can also be filed provisionally whereas design drawings cannot.

Design patents protect the appearance of the article.  Design patents are usually much cheaper than utility patents and are much easier to obtain.   If the main feature of you invention is the ornamental design, then a design patent is all you need to protect your invention.

We suggest you seek advice from a patent attorney to figure out which type of protection is best for your patent.