Do marketing companies actually work for inventors?

Do marketing companies actually work for inventors?

Seeking the assistance of a marketing company does have its benefits during the invention process. Marketing companies have the skills and abilities to bring in sales opportunities but, of course, this comes at a price. These companies do not work for free and often require payment up front before they will begin the process to market your product. In some cases, marketing companies will also ask for a percentage share of the sales made in what is known as commission.

Conduct Research

Before you hire any marketing firm to promote your product or service, you should always conduct adequate research on the legitimacy and ability of the firm to avoid potential scams that only result in wasted time and money. Take time to review the company’s website, portfolio and former (or current) clients. Usually, companies will have a page dedicated to customer reviews where you can find pertinent information on the company’s ability to generate results.

As you narrow down your search for the right firm to use for your product or service, do not be afraid to ask questions relating to your invention and the firm’s history of success or failure. Remember that you are paying for these services and, if you have questions, you have every right to ask. Some of these questions might include

  1. What is your previous experience in working with inventors?
  2. How many inventions have been successful based on the marketing techniques?
  3. What marketing techniques do you most often use? Why?
  4. How often are you approached by inventors and, out of this number, how many inventions do you choose to market?

Read the Fine Print

Once you have made your final selection on a marketing firm, be sure to check the fine print within the contract. Sometimes marketing companies will own the rights to a customers who has purchased your product through them. The company may own this right for a fixed period of time, which means that you cannot sell directly to the customer until that time period is over. Essentially, this is the way marketing companies protect themselves throughout the process. By adding this agreement, they are ensuring that you cannot terminate the contract once you start making sales through their contacts and customers. This is the primary difference between employing an individual to market your product and a marketing firm.

The Pros and Cons

On a more positive note, marketing companies are experts in sales. They know how to advertise, how to approach companies, and how to attract and engage potential customers. However, this still comes at a cost and is typically a binding agreement.

Personally, I recommend trying every avenue available before deciding to approach a marketing company. Utilizing your personal network of contacts as well as social media, investors, and invention mentors can not only save you money but it can provide valuable insight into the best method to market your product yourself.

As I often mention, always weigh the benefits of time and money before any decision. If you have the funds available but not enough time to market, hiring a marketing firm might be a more practical option to ensure that your product has a presence in the market. However, if you are confident in your marketing and sales skills, taking the chance to facilitate your own sales might be beneficial to save more money.

Regardless, the need to make sales is the key factor of success; the means by which these sales are made often differ according to budget and time constraints, the industry and invention, and the overall market.

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