How to Make & Sell Your Own Inventions

by Wanda Thibodeaux; Updated September 26, 2017

Every time we turn around, it seems as if a new product appears on the market. Each of these products represents an idea that came from someone's mind. You might have such ideas yourself and wonder how you can make a prototype of your invention and sell the concept. Below is a short guide on how to do just that.

Documentation

Step 1

Write down your invention idea. This can be done on a computer or even in a notebook initially, but eventually you'll want a clean, professional-looking copy. This will help you to remember the details of your concept. Write down the purpose of the invention, what you will need to make it, how much it will cost to make it, and all the applications for the invention you can think of.

Step 2

Draw sketches of the invention from all angles--these will be your primary blueprints. Once you have a visual representation of the invention, hire a professional to work up a true blueprint right down to the last screw. You may be able to avoid spending money on the professional work if you have access to some good design software.

Step 3

Research companies that produce or sell products similar to the one you have invented, or which would use the invention on a mass scale. Note down the company names and contact information--especially for the person who handles marketing for each company.

Promotion and Sale

Step 1

Build a prototype of the invention or have someone do it for you using your blueprints.

Step 2

Send copies of your prose documentation with a photograph of the invention prototype to the marketing directors at the companies you researched. You will not want to send this packet to the executives of the companies, since the executives are very busy and the marketing directors will bring the design to the executives if they believe the design has potential. Target companies with room for growth (i.e., that could use the revenue from the invention).

Step 3

Set up a face-to-face sales meeting with the marketing directors at any local companies. You can discuss details of the invention at this time and do a one-on-one sales pitch.

Step 4

Have an attorney look over any written offer or contract that a company offers you for the invention. You may want to have companies bid on the invention if more than one shows an interest, but make sure that any legal documents are reviewed and explained to you before you sign them.

Tips

  • You do not need to have a patent on an invention you are trying to sell. You can market the invention as "patent pending," or you can get a provisional patent that will allow you to keep tweaking your idea even as you market the concept. See the References, below, for a link to the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

Warnings

  • Be wary of companies that will try to scam you as you try to sell your product. These companies may offer to do the legwork of company research for you, or they may promise an invention sale to you for a fee. Be leery of any company or site on the Internet that asks you for money to promote and sell your concept--the concept should sell itself if you have documented and researched well.

About the Author

Wanda Thibodeaux is a freelance writer and editor based in Eagan, Minn. She has been published in both print and Web publications and has written on everything from fly fishing to parenting. She currently works through her business website, Takingdictation.com, which functions globally and welcomes new clients.