Category Archives: Edison Nation

New product search with Swiss+Tech

You never know when you’ll need a pair of scissors, a sharp edge, serated knife, wire cutter or a bottle opener. Things break and repairs are needed on the go all the time. It’s in these moments when having a multitool product is extremely useful, because let’s face it… we’re not all like MacGyver.

Swiss+Tech® produces high-quality, lightweight tools that combine Swiss craftsmanship with American innovation. The original Swiss+Tech® Micro-Tech™ 6-in-1 created the Key Ring Tool category. The company has since gone on to break new ground in the multifunctional tool department with such additions as the Utili-Key® 6-in-1 and the Micro-Max® 19-in-1.

MicroTech COMBO-1     Micro-Max on keys

To date, Swiss+Tech generates all products internally, but the market demands for them to be at the forefront of innovation. This is where the Edison Nation community can step in.

Swiss+Tech’s product offering goes beyond key ring tools today. Flip through this catalog and you’ll find a focus on emergency preparedness, mobile technology, USB-powered tools and a new line of larger, “palm grip” tools. Swiss+Tech is searching for innovations that can be marketed under their brand, which can include multitools and/or products that carve out a whole new category or product line.

Your ideas should:

 Have a “wow” factor and be useful and cool

 Appeal to a wide consumer audience and demographic

 Have everyday applications

 Be an impulse buy

Keep in mind:

Any innovations considered by the Swiss+Tech team will be analyzed to ensure they are economically viable. What does this mean? Impulse buy products typically retail for $9.99, $14.99 and $19.99. Your ideas should feature an all-in manufacturing cost of $4 to be a viable option for Swiss+Tech.

Have a new product idea? Submit your ideas to Swiss+Tech today:


 Have you ever thought, “wouldn’t it be cool if…”?

License Product License product License product
We exist to get product ideas out of your head and onto retail shelves, all at no risk to you.

 

Introducing the Amazon Inventions Tour!

Do you have an invention idea that would be perfect for Amazon.com?
Edison Nation and Amazon want to hear it at the Amazon Inventions Tour!

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Amazon and Edison Nation are teaming up to host the “Amazon Inventions Tour” in Atlanta, GA on September 25-26 (www.amazon.com/inventions). At the Amazon Inventions Tour, startups and innovators are invited to privately pitch their invention ideas in-person to Edison Nation’s evaluation team for possible funding and further development. Edison Nation has secured a $50 million investment commitment to fund the launch of selected products, including new product inventions and ready-to-scale companies that may require financial support to potentially make their products available on Amazon.com.

Inventors with ready-to-sell products will have the opportunity to present directly to Amazon for possible inclusion in Amazon Launchpad, a new program that makes it easy for inventors to launch, market, and distribute their products to Amazon customers worldwide.

Not quite ready to pitch?

Highlighting the event will be a number of high-profile speakers including venture capitalists, innovation experts, and industry leaders. This portion of the event is open to the public and free of charge. Speaker topics will include raising capital for your new business, protecting your intellectual property, manufacturing, digital marketing, brand building, healthcare and consumer product innovation and more. In addition, event attendees will have the opportunity to network with speakers, other inventors and attendees, and with team members from the event hosts and sponsor organizations.

What we’re looking for:

At the Amazon Inventions Tour, Edison Nation is looking for physical consumer product innovations including consumer goods and electronics, consumer health items, wearable technology, Internet of Things products, aging-in-place products, problem-solving inventions, and more. The Amazon Inventions Tour is not the right venue to present new business solutions, new ideas for services, process improvements, technologies, or digital solutions. Product pitches ranging from early-stage invention concepts all the way to startups with manufacture-ready products are welcome. Amazon is looking for physical products that could potentially be sold through its e-commerce platform and will be working directly with Amazon Inventions Tour registrants who fit the appropriate criteria. Select inventors may receive an invitation to participate in the Amazon Launchpad program.

So what’s this all about?

Amazon’s desire to foster a dynamic ecosystem of creativity and innovation for startups and inventors led to the collaboration with Edison Nation for the Amazon Inventions Tour. Edison Nation has more than 14 years of experience in uncovering, validating, developing, and commercializing inventions from individual innovators around the world. Edison Nation’s marketplace model, which is grounded in the protection of intellectual property, has generated hundreds of millions in retail sales.

The speaker series and networking portion of the event is free and open to the public. Presenting a ready-to-sell product to Amazon is also free to inventors. There is a $25 registration fee per invention for those interested in pitching an invention idea to Edison Nation. Space is limited and all attendees must register in advance at www.amazon.com/inventions.  

See you there!

10 Benefits of Composting

America is changing. Our increasing awareness and education regarding our environmental health is causing us to alter our individual lives. Hummers are being replaced with hybrids. Many of us have begun to add grass-fed beef, reclaimed wood, recycled materials and other green products to our shopping carts. However, few of us are aware of the benefits of composting. Composting is one of the most effective environmental protection measures we can take.
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Here are ten benefits of composting:

1. Reduces Landfill Waste
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Yard and food scraps make up 25-50% of what we throw away. The EPA estimates that one fourth of waste in our landfills could have been composted. Composting not only removes content from our landfills but utilizes that content.

2. Creates Nutrient Rich Soil
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Composting increases the quality of soil by increasing the amount of organic materials and micronutrients. Farms and gardens will thrive with the addition of compost.

3. Helps to Reduce Gross Greenhouse Gas Emissions
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One of the biggest contributors of greenhouse gases, specifically methane, is our landfills. If we composted the organic portion of our waste, we could drastically reduce those emissions.

4. Positively Affects Air Quality
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Many people who don’t compost incinerate their yard waste. Burning yard waste can release the harmful chemicals found in fertilizers, weed killers and bug sprays into the air. Many of the chemicals can lead to health problems such as asthma.

5. Averts Garden Pests
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Many of the micronutrients in compost have a pesticide-like effect on garden pests. In turn, composting reduces our dependence on harmful chemical pesticides.

6. Neutralizes Soil
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In many cases soil is too acidic or basic for plants to grow properly. Adding compost to soil helps to regulate the acid and alkaline levels in your soil.

7. Increases Biodiversity
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Composting attracts many kinds of worms, bacterias, birds, fungi and insects that are beneficial to the crop growing process.

8. Reduces Erosion
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Compost helps to reduce erosion by aiding the soil’s ability to hold water. Erosion leads to nutrient lacking soil and polluted water sources.

9. Cheap
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Going green can be expensive. Buying local foods or making the decision to purchase products made in America can cost significantly more than their less-environmentally-friendly counterparts. Composting may only require a purchasing a receptacle to recycle your waste.

10. Cost effective
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In many places, in both homes and offices, we are charged based on the amount of trash that we need disposed. If we were able to reduce that amount of trash by composting, it would help to save money.



 

Have a new product idea? Submit your composting ideas to Toter today:

 Have you ever thought, “wouldn’t it be cool if…”?

License Product License product License product
We exist to get product ideas out of your head and onto retail shelves, all at no risk to you.

Ten Aha! Moments We are Lucky Were Not Forgotten

TenAhaMoments2Modern technology has simplified our lives drastically. Over the last decade, we’ve seen remarkable changes. You can now open your laptop and access Facebook on the Internet in a matter of seconds. Just a few years ago you would have endured the twenty minutes of dial-up beeping that resembled a hungover alarm clock just to check your MySpace account. There are countless inventions and innovations that are present in each day of your life. However, many of these technologies and ideas can be traced back to just a few aha! moments from a fraction of our population.

New products are released constantly. The opportunity for invention and innovation is at an all-time high. You never know when you might happen upon an idea for the next big “thing”. Now it is more crucial than ever that apps like Edison Nation’s Sparks are available so you are prepared for when an aha! moment presents itself.

Here are ten aha! moments we are lucky were not forgotten:

  1. Eureka!

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While taking a bath Archimedes discovered the Archimedes Principle, a method of measuring the volume of irregular shapes with water displacement. He was so excited that he forgot to dress himself and took to the streets of Italy exclaiming, “Eureka!”, Greek for “I have found it.” Edison Nation and the Sparks team are not liable for any incarceration that may occur if following in Archimedes’ naked footsteps; a few laws have changed since the 1600’s.

  1. Gravity

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Sir Isaac Newton was resting in the shade of an apple tree when one of the most important aha! moments in history literally hit him over the head. He observed that an apple will always fall perpendicularly from its tree. This realization led him to uncover the law of gravity.

 

  1. Penicillin

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While studying staphylococcus, a genus of bacteria, Alexander Fleming discovered one of the most critical antibiotics in history. After returning to his messy lab from vacation, many of Fleming’s petri dishes had grown moldy. Fleming noticed that the mold had prevented the natural growth of the staphylococcus and derived penicillin from the investigation.

 

  1. The Microwave

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While Percy Spencer was working with combat radar equipment for WWII, he was able to revolutionize the way we prepare food. While standing in front of an active radar set, the candy bar in Spencer’s pocket melted. This instant lead to the revelation of the microwave oven.

 

  1. Potato Chips

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In the 1850’s George Crum, a renowned chef, was attracting upscale customers to Moon’s Lake House from around the country. It was there that a particularly snobby customer complained that Crum’s fried potatoes were too thick, soggy and bland. In an effort to spite the guest, Crum over fried and salted the thinnest potatoes that he could slice. To his surprise, the guest loved them so much that he ordered a second helping. Voila! Potato chips were born.

 

  1. Play-Doh

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During the first half of the 20th-century coal was commonly used to heat homes. Noah and Joseph McVicker, employees of a soap manufacturer, came up with a pliable material to remove the soot from wallpaper. Shortly after WWII many homes made the switch to natural gas. McVicker’s company was forced to remarket their product to avoid bankruptcy. After learning that their sister, a schoolteacher, had been using the material as molding clay in her classroom, they began to sell their creation as “Play-Doh”.

 

  1. Velcro

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During a walk in the woods with his dog, Swiss engineer George De Mestral was intrigued by the cockleburs that had adhered to his dog’s fur. After studying this phenomenon under a microscope, De Mestral was able to recreate the properties of the connection between the cocklebur and fur with velvet and crochet, or “Velcro”.

 

  1. The Popsicle

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Frank Epperson accidentally invented the popsicle after leaving his flavored powder and water drink concoction outside overnight with its stirring stick. Evening temperatures caused Epperson’s drink to freeze around its stirring stick giving way to the “Popsicle”.

 

  1. Matches

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While mixing a pot of chemicals, John Walker noticed that a clump had hardened on the end of his stirrer. In an effort to remove the dried glob, he scraped the stick and it quickly caught fire. The calamity produced matches.

 

  1. Post-its

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Spencer Silver, a 3M chemist, was tasked with creating a strong adhesive for the company. Instead, he made a very weak adhesive. However, the sticky substance was near indestructible, remaining sticky after multiple uses. This was the conception of the post-it note.

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If you hope to achieve the same success as these ten inventors and innovators visit http://www.edisonnation.com/ios-idea-app and download the Sparks app to begin sharing your revolutionary ideas with Edison Nation today!



 

 Have you ever thought, “wouldn’t it be cool if…”?

License Product License product License product
We exist to get product ideas out of your head and onto retail shelves, all at no risk to you.

10 Innovative Composting Ideas

As environmental awareness progresses to the forefront of our moral and political priorities, reducing your environmental footprint is not only cementing itself into our personal lives but into the blueprints of a successful business. People are making a conscious effort to use these principles while spending their money. We are no longer as willing to support companies whose products leave a trail of pollution in their wake. Instead, many consumers are turning towards green businesses and in many cases will go the extra mile, and dollar, to pursue environmentally-friendly products. Never before has transforming the kale that you gave up on trying to eat into a compost pile been more fashionable and important.

Composting, recycling and other organic waste solutions can help to give your business the edge. Unfortunately, it can be a complicated extra step and a sloppy chore. Toter, a conventional green waste handling company, is looking to find and license innovative products, designs and ideas to help consumers and businesses in their quest for environmental integrity. Toter is most interested in tabletop composting solutions but is open to any idea. Products can range from designs intended to aid in the ease of organic waste collection and disposal, or simply a plan to make the process a little less icky.

Here are 10 recent green inventions and innovations to get your creative juices flowing:

1.Envirocycle’s Mini Composter/ Compostmaker
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Photo Credit: Envirocyle.com

This product comes pre-assembled, and its compact design allows it to fit in tight garden spaces. Its quick composting cycle takes only four to six weeks.

2. The Jarst mini composter
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Photo Credit: Yankodesign.com

This product takes much of the back-breaking yard work out of composting with a flower pot that can rest on any countertop. This design allows users to add cooking scraps as simple as carrot peels to be transformed into fertilizer to help even the peskiest of plants potted there to thrive.

3. NatureMill’s NEO
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Photo Credit: NatureMill.com

The NEO takes the hassle out of manual compost mixing with an automatic mixer. It can be used both indoors and outdoors. Even the material used in the creation of this product was recycled.

4. Cooler Solutions Inc. idea for the biophilic composting system.
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Photo Credit: Fooyoh.com

This design allows an office to reduce up to 33% of their waste. Organic waste collected from the offices can provide nutrients for indoor plants that help to improve the air quality and atmospheres of the offices the plants were grown.

5. Vermicondo
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Photo Credit: Treehugger.com

The vermicondo is the luxury solution to worm composting. Many people who live in apartment buildings or other residences without access to a yard are unable to compost. The product mimics the aesthetics of cabinets and can be stored seamlessly in a kitchen or pantry. This product’s design allows worms, who travel vertically, to break down waste most effectively, but it’s stainless steel exterior is easy on the eye.

6. Hello Compost
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Photo Credit: Fastcodesign.com

Students Luke Keller and Blenkin have plans to reform the way we compost entirely. Instead of using your organic left-overs to create odors and dirty compost, Hello Compost is a composting system that turns waste into food as opposed to leftover food into waste. Families are able to store their green waste in odor- containing freezable bags until they are sent to Project EATS, a New York-based urban agriculture non profit organization, where they are assigned a value and used to grow fresh produce by local farmers. The families are then sent a portion of fresh produce based on that value.

7. The Bokashi Bucket
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Photo Credit: Ecofriend.com

This system involves layering organic waste with a combination of a Bokashi mix that prevents any foul odors. A week after the system has been filled a liquid fertilizer is ready to be harvested from a tap at the base of the bucket and used on plants.

8. The Worm In
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Photo Credit: Ecofreind.com

This lightweight PVC based design only needs organic waste and earthworms to work. Over time as you continue to add food scraps the earthworms will travel upwards, leaving hearty compost in their wake. Once the process is completed the bag can easily be removed, cleaned and reattached.

9. Solar Composting
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Photo Credit: Wastewiseproductsinc.com

Solar powered composting streamlines the process of organic waste disposal by harnessing the energy of the sun to regulate the temperature and airflow during composting cycles. This process ensures the best quality fertilizer possible.

10. Can-O-Worms Worm Composter
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Photo Credit: Ecofriend.com

This design utilizes earthworms and layers of compost to provide nutrient rich fertilizer. The product is odorless and can be easily set up in a backyard, apartment or office.

Have a new product idea for composting? Submit your ideas to Toter today:

 Have you ever thought, “wouldn’t it be cool if…”?

License Product License product License product
We exist to get product ideas out of your head and onto retail shelves, all at no risk to you.

Why There is No Better Time Than Now to be an Inventor

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Anyone in any place can become a successful inventor. As Alfred Nobel will tell you, all it takes is a dynamite idea. Because of innovation in the field of invention it is easier than ever to take a clever concept from its creator’s mind, fabricate a prototype, fund its creation, construct a product, and to bring that product to market.

Technology.
Even a sketch on the back of a napkin can be transformed into a prototype. It has never been easier to fabricate a concept from its rawest state using the technology that inventors have available to them today. With the emergence of 3D printing, innovations in vacuum forming and laser jets, all it takes is a digital file to bring designs to life that would never have been possible just a decade ago.

In a recent project Honda has taken concept car designs from previous decades and fabricated them using an affordable “household” 3D printer in an effort to demonstrate how the most extravagant and unorthodox designs can be created in any imaginative person’s living room.

Collaboration.
When we conjure a mental image of an inventor it is traditionally a wiry haired engineer locked away in a workshop struggling through the trial and error process of invention. However, today we have tools that allow you to access any other person on the planet via email, FaceTime, or even by a simple phone call.

Tools like Google Docs allow people who are countries and oceans apart to create and edit presentations, documents and data sheets simultaneously.

Companies like Edison Nation and Assembly help inventors to connect with developers, engineers, designers, marketers, writers and other creatives to help with any step between an idea’s conception and its sale on the market.

Resources.
There is a surplus of resources available to help inventors and entrepreneurs that provide support and patent information.

Everyday Edisons, a television show that helps ordinary people take a simple idea and turn it into a product, offers methods of getting into contact with groups of inventors located near you for support and advice.

Web sites like IP Watchdog and Google Patents offer inventors information on patents, patent law, how and when to apply for a patent and much more so they can better protect their intellectual property.

Funding.
Inventors are no longer solely responsible for the funding of their ideas. Entrepreneurs are not forced to turn towards banks for a loan or plead with big businesses for start-up money. Web sites like Kickstarter, companies like AKT IP Ventures and shows like Shark Tank are making it easier for anyone, anywhere to fund ideas that they believe in. Personal Bankruptcy is no longer as high a risk.

In 2012 smartwatch creators developed the idea for Pebble, a watch that connects to your smartphone via Bluetooth. Pebble creators knew they had a great idea, they just didn’t know how to fund it. Pebble turned to Kickstarter, a website that allows anyone to donate any amount of money towards an idea they believe in and pitched their ideas to the public. After receiving a record-breaking response, Pebble received over 10 million in funding.

Advertising/Marketing Channels.
All you need is a hook and websites like Facebook and Twitter provide a free platform for exposing a catchy idea to the masses. Social media is making it easier than ever to get information to people.

A recent 2014 campaign to raise money for ALS, the ice bucket challenge, utilized social media to relay their infectious message. It was seen by 440 million people.

You have the potential to reach a drastic amount of the population with a successful product video, campaign, slogan or design without spending a dime.

Because of technology, collaboration, resources, funding, advertising and marketing channels it is faster, easier and more effectual than ever to successfully execute the production of an idea.


 

 Have you ever thought, “wouldn’t it be cool if…”?

License Product License product License product
We exist to get product ideas out of your head and onto retail shelves, all at no risk to you.

Introducing Edison Nation’s first iOS app, Sparks

Sparks by Edison Nation – the fastest and easiest way for innovators to record new product ideas – now available for free on the Apple App Store

A new iOS app to get people’s great invention ideas out of their heads and onto store shelves now available for download today on iOS devices

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John Hetrick, a retired industrial engineer, was driving with his wife and daughter through the Pennsylvania countryside. Suddenly, a boulder appeared in the road ahead causing Hetrick to swerve into a ditch. Hetrick and his wife immediately reached for their daughter, stopping her from hitting the dashboard and possibly saving her life. It was shortly after this accident that Hetrick was struck with the idea for the airbag.

It only takes a split second for the metaphorical light bulb to blink above an imaginative mind. If you happen to be without a pen and paper when struck with an idea, it can take that same split second for your revelation to be lost forever in the web of the mind. The idea for the next iPad or telephone may hit you while shopping, getting dinner with friends or even in the car like John Hetrick.

Never fear forgetful innovators, Edison Nation has created the remedy for the fleeting idea: the Sparks iOS app.

In this modern invention age, what’s likely always with you? Your iPhone or iPad. When inspiration strikes simply use text to type up your idea. Can’t text? Use the voice memo function to record your idea. Even if you’re having trouble putting your idea into words, you can draw a quick design or sketch and use the Sparks app to take a picture.

The average human has more than 60,000 thoughts per day. Why not try to make some money off of a few of them? Users can turn their best “Sparks” into full-fledged product ideas with a single click, syncing their Sparks across all devices and into their own private account on EdisonNation.com. Edison Nation’s online platform is private and secure, and each invention idea submitted is professionally evaluated. The top product ideas are pitched for licensing opportunities, and if a licensing deal is reached, the inventor receives 50% of all royalties.

Edison Nation has been the go-to resource for independent innovators with great invention ideas. The community platform has generated more than $200 million at retail and has licensed dozens of products. Now, Edison Nation is making it easier for independent innovators to record their ideas and get the best ones onto store shelves.

Best of all the Sparks app is free and available for download now!

Visit www.edisonnation.com/ios-idea-app to learn more and download the app.


 Have you ever thought, “wouldn’t it be cool if…”?

License Product License product License product
We exist to get product ideas out of your head and onto retail shelves, all at no risk to you.

How Edison Nation works to bring new product ideas to market

Hello Edison Nation community!

My name is Todd Stancombe and I am the president of Edison Nation. I wanted to reach out and share a behind the scenes look as to how Edison Nation brings new products to market.

First, and most importantly, no one cares more about your success than we do. You’ve often heard us share that inventing is a marathon, not a sprint. We’ve also shared that your success is our success. We mean this wholeheartedly. In fact, our brand promise is to provide anyone’s idea the most opportunities to reach its greatest potential. This is what guides our work day in and day out at Edison Nation HQ. We aren’t committed to a single channel of commercialization. Based on the product and the IP, we attempt to align it with the best commercialization strategy. We can license the IP to a category leader, manufacture and sell products, or produce two minute spots and test them in the ASOTV platform.

If you’ve ever submitted an idea, you are likely well aware of your dashboard and our eight-stage evaluation process. This process is in place so that we can securely and fairly review each idea that’s submitted into our system. As the idea works through the review, our team is thinking about how to connect that idea to a manufacturer and/or retailer who can help commercialize that idea. The Licensing team that reviews these ideas are playing matchmaker, constantly thinking about what contact and what company may have an interest about a great piece of innovation.

Companies partner with Edison Nation to find the next great innovation they can add to their product line. Our jobs would be much easier if all ideas presented to our partners were a perfect fit for them or considered to be home runs by the folks reviewing and selecting them. We both know that’s not realistic. In reality, while an idea may be in fact a great idea, it may not always be an ideal fit for that partner for a number of reasons.

For those ideas that are presented and ultimately not selected by the sponsor, we understand what a letdown that is. It is for us, too. In that moment, it may be easy to forget that your idea was privately shown to industry leaders and given the chance to succeed. We want you to know that for many of these products or ideas, we don’t stop there.

If your product idea is not chosen, you have the opportunity to submit your idea into either the Open Search for all product categories or the Insider Licensing Program for patented or patent-pending ideas in all product categories. In these searches, we do a whole lot more for your idea. Once we’ve selected an idea, a tremendous amount of work is done at our expense, above and beyond the submission fee. Remember, no additional fees will ever be requested of you at any time.

Utilizing the information from your submission, we:

  • Identify the top potential licensing partners in the category
  • Do a deep dive into the category to ensure the Licensing team is armed with research to show how your idea is a great fit for the space
  • Create a pitch to present to category leaders that focus on the features and benefits of your idea
  • These pitches include industrial design work and a demonstrative video that, once presented, will give a potential partner a clear understanding of your idea in 60 seconds or less.
  • Connect with each partner early and often to keep lines of communication open
  • Work with the partner to determine fair and competitive terms and deal structures
  • Ensure confidentiality of all ideas evaluated and presented
  • Handle all patent work required once a deal has been signed at no additional cost to you
  • Manage the complete road to commercialization so that the end result is your idea on the store shelf

We work to find the right commercialization path, the right partner and the right deal structure for your idea. We will continue to run with a great innovation until we find a home for it, no matter how long it takes. If, down the road, it has been determined that a licensed idea is not able to be commercialized, all completed design work and intellectual property are immediately returned to you, the innovator.

Inventing and bringing products to market is a marathon, not a sprint. I’m a marathon runner and am fully aware of what this journey entails. A great example is our partnership with HSN’s Joy Mangano. We met with her team in the spring of 2013 to discuss ways in which we could collaborate on new product innovations. From that point forward, we have been working on three new products that will launch later this year. We are going to be expanding the relationship as Joy’s brand continues to grow. Recently, she shared a link with us for a movie that is opening on Christmas day telling the story of her rise from single mom to successful product marketer.

I want you to know that every member of my team cares. Certainly, we’d like to get more deals done and get all deals done quicker. We work every opportunity as hard as it can be worked, but many of the go-forward decisions lie in the hands of our partners. Their businesses constantly change and we have to be prepared for and live with that reality. My team wouldn’t trade the ups, the downs, the pain and the joy of seeing a sketch on a napkin or a fully-developed prototype come to life for anything. It’s not easy, but nothing that is worth it in life rarely is. That’s been my experience so far.

In closing, I want to say thank you for everything you do. Don’t quit inventing and don’t stop caring. In my opinion, one of Thomas Edison’s best quotes was, “Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time,” followed closely by, “Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.” Edison Nation won’t give up on your great ideas. We’ll continue to press on and we’ll continue to find successes in the marketplace. We’ll get there together.

Thank you,

Todd Stancombe


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protoTYPING: Podcasts for Inventors

In 2008, I had a design job where I spent most of my days sitting at the computer doing SolidWorks. My office was in a cube farm and the atmosphere had about as much life as a Chernobyl cooling pond. The minutes dragged on, and eventually I started to bring headphones to listen to some music. It helped but then I got bored of listening to the same stuff over and over. It was about this time that podcasting started to tiptoe into the main stream. I was a big fan of the movie Clerks, and was excited to find that the director, Kevin Smith had a podcast called Smodcast. I downloaded every episode and I designed parts while Kevin had heart-to-heart conversations with my favorite Clerks characters. Eventually I had 4-5 podcasts including some from NPR, the BBC, as well as comedy shows like Adam Corolla and Greg Proops. I became their anonymous friends while they talked me through the day. I have been a fiend for podcasts ever since.

Seven years on and podcasts are bigger than ever. Shows like Serial have millions of downloads per episode and have become standard entertainment for commuters and gym goers. Outside the mainstream successes there are podcasts that cover every genre and interest, and plenty that can help inventors too. Here are my 5 favorite podcasts for inventors, prototypers, and product developers.

StartUppodcast for inventors

Due to its great story telling, StartUp has mass appeal, but it is must listening for seasoned or newbie inventors. It is hosted by Alex Blumberg, former producer of This American Life and founder of NPR’s Planet Money. In a style similar to This American Life, Alex chronicles his own journey to found his podcasting company Gimlet Media. It tells the often embarrassing tale of how he approached inventors for funding, refined his pitch, found a partner, and decided on a name for his company. The best parts of the show are the interludes where he discusses the state of his venture with his wife, Nazanin. Their unfiltered moments are a great insight into how starting a company affects a family and a relationship. They have just finished their second season where they follow the startup dating company, Dating Ring. The third season is set to drop in the fall.

 

Art of the Kickstartpodcast for inventors

Art of the Kickstart is a podcast for inventors about crowdfunding hosted by Matt Ward. He interviews inventors and entrepreneurs that are using the platform to get their products into production and gets them to share their keys to success. Some of his guests are big hitting authors and entrepreneurs like Seth Godin. However, many of them are first time inventors and small business owners that are relatable to the average garage inventor and budding entrepreneur. One of his interviews was Enventys client, Brandon Dierker, inventor of the Collar Perfect travel iron (Episode 62). Matt has an engaging style and gets great details about the often twisty path from lightning bolt moment to manufactured product and reveals great tips to help the journey. With 110 episodes and counting, Matt will keep you informed and inspired for months.

 

Inventors Mindpodcast for inventors

Chris Hawker, inventor of the Power Squid and President of product development firm Trident Design, is the host of Inventor’s Mind. Chris has been in product development for over 20 years and has brought over 70 products to market. His insights are relevant for inventors of every level. His episodes cover crowdfunding, keys to getting a product licensed, advice for going to tradeshows, and how to get a licensing meeting. In addition to the great advice, he also interviews other product development professionals including a candid chat with Edison Nation CEO, Louis Foreman in episode 5. Many of the episodes are under 10 minutes, but they are packed with great information that will help you get your ideas out of your mind and into reality.

WTFFF?!podcasts for inventors

Not to be confused with comedian Marc Maron’s entertainment interview podcast, WTF, WTFFF?! is a podcast for inventors about 3D printing where FFF stands for “Fused Filament Fabrication”. The hosts are Tracy and Tom Hazzard, married couple and co-owners of Hazz Design Consulting, which has more than 20 years of design experience in consumer products. They use 3D printing as part of their process and their growing pains and a learning curve using the technology led them to starting a podcast about 3D printing for the small business or home user. They cover a plethora of topics from printing issues like clogged extruder heads, where to find good 3D models, and careers in 3D printing. Many of the episodes are less than 10 minutes, providing efficient information to help you get the most from your 3D printer or learn more about the process.

Launchpadpodcasts for inventors

Launchpad is a yet to be released podcast from Josh Springer, the inventor of the Bottom’s Up draft beer filling system. It is due to launch in late summer of 2015, and will feature interviews with entrepreneurs and product developers to hear the gory details of how business are started and products brought to market. Josh has a fascinating journey from working at a sign shop, to almost going to federal prison, to becoming the founder of a successful business. The episodes will be candid and dig deep into the successes and failures on the road to bringing products to market, and I am eagerly anticipating the first episodes.

 


 

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Two More Ideas Selected for As Seen on TV Testing

The Edison Nation As Seen on TV team is on a roll this summer! We just received news that two more ideas have been selected from the ASOTV Open Search for commercialization. Meet the inventors below and leave a comment to congratulate them as their ideas undergo ideation, product design and development, commercial production and market testing.

Stay tuned for updates! Follow us on Twitter and Facebook for the latest updates as their ideas move through each stage.

jill kelly

Jill Kelly

Jill grew up in Palo Alto California in the heart of Silicon Valley, right around the corner from Steve Jobs. She currently resides just east of Sacramento where she makes a living as a gold miner. Jill says she first stumbled upon Edison Nation after watching a video of Betsy Kaufman talk about Eggies. She was immediately inspired by Betsy’s story and has had many invention ideas come to her in waves ever since, including her recent As Seen on TV selection. Jill says she came up with this particular idea after exploring creative ways to store things in small spaces.

When she’s not gold mining or inventing, she’s a singer and a writer. She has recorded three CD’s and written two books: one one titled The Miracle Miner, which documents her gold mining inventions, and the other titled The Movie Maker: Charles O. Baumann, which is about her great-grandfather who was a silent film pioneer and movie mogul.

Jill’s advice to aspiring inventors: “Find the one thing you love to do in life and do it the best you can!


Fred WherritFred Wherritt

Fred was born and raised in Waterford, Michigan, where he still resides today. After spending many hours researching how to bring inventions to market, he came across Edison Nation. He finally submitted his first idea after a year of observing to confirm it was a company he could really trust. Since then, Fred says submitting ideas to Edison Nation has become a regular part of his lifestyle and the best decision he’s made as an inventor.

This particular As Seen on TV idea came to him after studying successful products and coming up with a new and improved way to solve a widespread problem. Fred also credits Edison Nation’s forums for being a great resource and source of inspiration.

Fred’s advice to aspiring inventors:“For those who score a licensing deal – the journey is measured in years, not months, and usually many years. If this is what you want to do, stay patient, keep learning and learn to deal with the inevitable ups and down (oh, and don’t quit your day job)! “

Congratulations, Jill and Fred!


 

 Have you ever thought, “wouldn’t it be cool if…”?

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Even if you don’t have an invention idea right now you can still join Edison Nation for free and learn from our community why we’re the trusted source for bringing product ideas to market.