I have a Product Idea- Now what?

Every time I tell people what I do as a Product Agent, and then start describing that I search for products for QVC, TV and retail product placement, inevitably 90% say, “Oh, I have a product idea, I just do not know what to do with it.” It never fails, ever.

Then I start telling them a little more about what I do, and then they ask me, “Well how did you do that?” I spend most of my time answering questions about the steps someone needs to take to take a product to market. There are a few basic things you need to determine if you want to think about bringing a product to market. I have briefly outlined what those things are to give you an idea of what you have to do:

Determine which idea you want to take to market

Even though you have 100’s of ideas, it is not realistic to expect to develop, and take them all to market. You would be wise to take a few good ideas, weed them out, then determine which would be easiest, quickest, and most cost effective to develop and bring to market first. Believe me, the first is ALWAYS the hardest, one you have the recipe and model down, other product ideas are easier.

Determine if you have the legal right to take that idea to market

Now you ask, why do I need to know if I can take it to market? Because, if there is an existing patent on a similar product, you may be banned from proceeding with your idea initially. Do a patent or intellectual property (IP) search at wwww.uspto.gov to search patent and trademark names. If you’re clear, then go for it! You may want to hire someone to help you do this, as novice IP searchers we may miss something crucial.

Determine if the product idea can me manufactured cost/profitably

There is nothing worse than spending some much time and resources on developing a product idea if it cannot be reasonably produced and then sold at retail for a profit.

Determine who will buy your product

Spend some time researching who will be the main consumers who will buy from you. It is important to establish that. If you do not have customers to buy your products, no point is developing it! Focus groups are the best way to ask the people who you want to sell to. Be flexible, and be willing to adjust to what the consumer may want form you.

Determine where that product will be sold

You have to have a customer to buy your products right? Same thing holds true about where they will buy your products. You have the internet, a retail store, a business to business transaction etc. You can do one or all, if you want. The one thing you do need is a plan of attack. In my industry of consumer bought goods, which means they buy products from TV or a brick and mortar retail store, my client need to have product that sells in an 8 minute TV slot, or a retail shelf.

Of course, these are just a few of the items you need to consider if you’re contemplating taking a product idea to market. I always recommend you consult an industry expert to help you start a plan. It is always best when you have someone who has experience in this industry to guide you.



Kim Babjak and Kimco LLC help companies with “Mind 2 Market” product development, manufacturing, and retail product placement. KimCo can help products find production and placemnt into mass retailers such as Wal-Mart and QVC. 

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