Best Way To Approach Company - New Idea To Existing Product?

olimits7's Avatar

Hi,

I have an idea relating to an existing product that I think will breath new life into it. My question is how can I approach the company and propose this new idea without getting burned?

I just have an idea and they have all the resources and know exactly how to get this done. So I have a feeling if I tell them my idea they will say they’re not interested and then develop the new feature on their own since they already have the infrastructure in place.

Thank you,

olimits7

posted March 15, 2011 09:22 (
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olimits7's Avatar

Thanks, Roger…Thats a great suggestion; to get in touch with the company but don’t specify the enhancement or product until proper paperwork is in place!

olimits7

posted March 15, 2011 18:44 (
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rogerbrown's Avataren_staff_badge

So, more than one company makes this product and your idea would fit another companies same product? If they accept produce submissions do they have to be patented and could your enhancement be patened? I would approach them and say you have an enhancement to one of their existing products, don’t mention which one and wanted to know their policy for submission of this type of product? If they ask which product make a general statement, since I don’t know the name of the company or the industrty it is in lets say it is tool.
You can say it is an enhancement for your pliers line and leave it at that. Don’t say I have an enhancement that allows your pliers to also be used as a hammer and a saw by switching the handles and……
Just say you prefer to wait until you have proper paperwork signed between the two of you before proceeding further.

posted March 15, 2011 13:34 (
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lumi1128's Avatargold

Why you do not file for provisional patent which will cost you little over $100 if you can do it by yourself and there make sure you cover all little details you think of and a Company are not able to add anything important to be able to copy your idea, than you are safe to present your idea to any company?

Good luck!

posted March 15, 2011 13:32 (
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olimits7's Avatar

Currently, it’s just at the idea stage.

They have a patent on the product, but after taking a closer look at the patent I think if they said “no” I could be able to contact another company; since I don’t believe I would infringe on their patent…but I should first verify this with a patent attorney.

Yes, this would definitely be a “game changer” enhancement to the product and would introduce a whole new market to the product.

This company does accept new product submissions, but I’m afraid that basically all I have is an idea that they haven’t thought of yet. And once I tell them about my idea and turn the light bulb on in their heads; at this point I’m pretty much expendable.

Thank you,

olimits7

posted March 15, 2011 13:20 (
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rogerbrown's Avataren_staff_badge

Marketing strategies are hard to get in front of companies unless it is tied to a product you are presenting to them. If it is for an existing product in their line unless it is out of this world most companies rely on their own marketing staff to do this. I am not saying it can’t be done, just very hard.

posted March 15, 2011 13:13 (
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junqdiva's Avatargold

What if you just have a new marketing strategy idea for the company? Is the approach the same to find a contact within the company as it would be to submit a new product idea? NDA’s, Query letters, etc….?

posted March 15, 2011 12:49 (
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rogerbrown's Avataren_staff_badge

What stage of development do you have your idea? Do you have a prototype, sell sheet, etc? The other question is if they turn you down and are not interested will this idea translate to other products or commpanies or is it a dead issue if they say No? You also need to know is this idea enough of a game changer to enhance the product and its sales or is it a change in color that really has no change in functionality.
You need to research or ask if they even look at outside ideas for existing products and what is their policy for submission if they are open to seeing anything.

posted March 15, 2011 09:53 (
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