Have you ever had an idea, app, or product that someone beat you to creating? Before you start sharing your idea with the wrong person or show it to a company that may offer to buy it, you need to do one thing above all others. Protect it.
If you are looking to protect your invention or license it, the only way to ensure that your idea is protected is to file a patent with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. The process can be lengthy and the steps involved may be intimidating for most. Prior to getting involved with an attorney and parties necessary to complete your application, here are some other steps to keep in mind.
Document your Idea
Aside from your patent application, you need proof of your idea. Write a detailed document about your idea, from it’s workings to your business plan. Seal your idea in an envelope and mail it to yourself, and have dated proof of when you wrote the document. Write your idea in a journal, and on a notarized document. This is called by some, the “Poor Man’s” patent. Document everything that can support your idea. These items may be helpful one day in court.
Will your Idea Succeed?
Ensure that your idea is not already taken. Before hiring a patent attorney, lookup your idea for free via Google Patent Search or www.uspto.gov
Research the market and your competitors. Is your idea actually lucrative? What are your margins? Who are your competitors and how large is the market? How will you distribute your product and will it catch on? While an idea is great, it’s how you get that idea into production and used by the market itself. For example, many people have ideas for apps. Do you have the funding available to create it, support it and market it? Do you have the ability to make it go viral? Will you end up cash positive after all is said and done?
Research and Development
Find out how much a prototype would cost, see if it’s within your budget, and try to put into practice the elements of your idea. Tweak your design as necessary. Don’t file a patent until you have a prototype and your idea is final. There may be more features and details you may want to add.
Filing a Patent
Once you have your idea and design finalized, it’s time to file a patent. You will need to decide on what type of patent you are applying for, whether it be a utility patent (for new processes or machines) or a design patent (for manufacturing new, non-obvious ornamental designs).
You can write the patent and application yourself, but always have a skilled patent attorney look over it. If you don’t have a strong patent written by a patent attorney or agent, you’ll likely end up in a mess later when your competitor finds a loophole allowing them to copy your idea.
United Patent Network
A patent authority like the United Patent Network can help with finding you a skilled attorney and has a network of patent agents and attorneys that will research and protect your idea globally. Their network, approach, knowledge and global relationships with all the key professionals in the invention industry make them idea for inventor services.
United Patent Network contracts with a network of Patent Attorneys globally to provide the best advice and legal services available in the industry. They can help verify if the idea is something that has the potential to be protected, and put together a plan of action with our world-class network that delivers world-class performance.
United Patent Network also offers a high-profile advertising and PR program and ensures to continue to stimulate interest and drive sales among a global audience. Unlike other companies that advertise just the brand, they focus on properly exposing client’s ideas to the companies who might have an interest in a licensing deal. These companies will license an invention and pay royalties for the right to make and sell the invention. They will typically pay 100% of the manufacturing and development costs.
United Patent Network Advantages
- Everything Under One Roof
- Free Invention Idea Review
- Design and Marketing
- Prototype Development
- Final Market Ready Product
- Licensed Patent Pros
- Engineering Feasibility Study
- University Based Marketability Study
- Custom Commercialization
- Industrial Submissions & Live Follow-up
Once you have filed your patent application, it’s time to bring out the big guns.
Whether you decide to hire United Patent Networks’s marketing network or plan to do it yourself, make sure you have a good plan of action and good business plan. Address all the challenges you need to address, questions and challenges like how you will make money, how you will make your product spread, if a physical product, how will you manufacture it and end up cash positive on the other end? If a licensed product, what will be your terms for licensing it?
Be frugal and smart with money. Make money before you spend it, have patience, do research, and always be ahead of the game.
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