The Three Traits of a Winning Invention

The Three Traits of a Winning Invention By Stephen Key

As an aspiring product business owner, one of the authors you should read and follow is Stephen Key.

Most of his ideas and pieces of advice are directly geared towards licensing your ideas – which is also a good business model for physical products.

I’ve read his book – One Simple Idea – and loved it.  I DEFY you to read it and not be inspired, or even a little out of control with your ideas.


His recent blog post about The Three Traits of a Winning Invention contains information that’s very relevant to developing and bringing your own product to market as well.

The big take-home points that make an invention easy to license are perfectly true for the product business owner too:

  • Have a strong benefit.  Designers, inventors, and engineers like to brag about all the functionality that is built into their product.  Your customer really only cares about the benefit it brings to them.  What will it do for them, what problem does it solve, how will it benefit their health, wealth, or relationships.  What does it do for them.
  • It must be easy to manufacture.  I prefer cheap and easy manufacturing over advanced techniques any day.  You don’t want to commission the factory to develop a new process.  In fact, you want a process so simple that you can shop around for manufacturers, or even change vendors on the fly if you are given problems.  You want it so simple that if prices change, you can move your manufacturing from China, to Vietnam, to Africa, to the USA, to Chile.
  • Have a market and determine if customers are willing to buy BEFORE developing.  Don’t throw good money after bad – only sell into a market full of customers willing to give you their money.

Checking off all three of these three traits of a winning invention is a sure-fire way to ensure your product will be successful.  Whether you are just looking to license the idea, or you are developing and manufacturing yourself.

Read the entire post here

I also encourage you to check out his book One Simple Idea


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