How to sell your invention idea

4 Steps to Selling Your Invention Idea

Getting a great invention idea is one thing -- but following through to making it a reality is another. Follow the 4 easy steps below to get your invention idea off the ground, and earn some money!

1. Be prepared to show your idea to potential licensees or investors.

Many people I speak to think that they can just “sell their idea” and collect a lump sum. This is possible, though it’s very difficult. With licensing, you can essentially rent the rights to your intellectual property with minimal investment. The licensee, a company that is responsible for the manufacturing and distribution of the product, will pay you, the licensor, a royalty or percentage of the profits, usually calculated from the wholesale cost.  

2. Have a prototype ready to present to potential licensees.

Determining the type of preparation needed to present to investors, potential partners or a licensee, will depend on the idea you have, and the industry in which it will be used. You could start with doing a simple search on your own, then a professional patent search with an opinion to help guide you on whether your idea is patentable or not. Utilize a CAD program (computer-assisted drawings) to draw and create a 3-D prototype or hire a product designer or engineer. Or make your own sample -- cut, sew, craft a wood model, or take things apart that already exist!

3. Have at least a provisional patent application filed so you can call your idea “patent pending.”

Before you begin pitching your invention idea to earn royalties, you should have some intellectual property. (While it is possible to license inventions without any patent status, this is based on building personal relationships in particular industries, like I have as an inventors licensing agent.) If you want to sell your idea outright, you may first need to have your idea produced and already selling well for a company, partner or licensee to be interested and make you an offer. By completing some of these steps, you will be better prepared to potentially earn royalties for your invention through licensing.

4. Seek help when needed

Review the stage of the invention process at which you find yourself, and recognize where you need help. I’ve been an inventor for over 15 years, and I can provide any or all of the following services:

  • Brainstorming your idea
  • Feedback
  • Representation as a licensing agent
  • Licensing to earn royalties or manufacturing to start your own business
  • Resources to develop your invention

Do you want my opinion on your idea?

I’ll be straightforward with you, and tell you like it is, and estimate what your window of opportunity might be. We’ll discuss what moving forward would look like and how much money you might be able to make. Book a 20 minute or 1-hour session with me directly below.