How to pitch an invention idea on television
Fundamental Steps you need to take before you pitch an invention idea.If you are an inventor or have come up with the perfect idea for an invention, then the next thing to consider is pitching your idea to a potential investor. This is a lot easier said than done. Regardless of whether you are trying to get on Shark Tank, or As seen on TV, there is a process and a formula which needs to be followed in order to maximize your chances of being seen and ultimately invested in. Here are some of the key things to consider prior to making your pitch.
What is the target audience and what problem does your product solve?
It is one thing to have a great idea, but quite another to try to have that idea be marketed to the public. If you are trying to get an investor on board with your idea then the first thing that you need to consider is who the product will be sold to? A teething ring for a child is not targeted to the child, but rather is targeted to the parent of the child. While you want to have a product that a child will use, it is ultimately the parent who will spend the money on your product, so cater to them as your target audience.Where a great many people err is in describing their product rather than who the product is for. A great example would be describing a car jack. The buyer does not want to buy a car jack; they want to change a tire. Yes, the features and the functionality of the product should be explained, but the problem that your product is solving should be at the forefront of your pitch.When you pitch and invention idea and discuss you target demographic, keep in mind that you are going to market what the product can do for them. If you are selling a car jack, do not go into the details about how much pressure it can take and such details right off the bat. Instead talk about the inconvenience of being stuck without a jack and the frustrations of waving down someone to help (or calling AAA to fix a flat tire). Then provide your product as the solution.
Know your product inside and out before you pitch an invention idea
Your product is your ticket to an investor. As such, you should know everything about the product/invention. An investor will ask you questions about your product to see how much homework you have done. Data about your product/invention should be factual and precise. Know not only the data relating to the manufacturing of your product and the projected sales, but also to the weaknesses of your product and the potential obstacles which you may face. Shows such as Shark Tank and Dragons’ Den hone in on these weaknesses as a means of determining which would-be investment recipients know their product/invention.Innovators who can anticipate the questions and have answers or solutions to the questions which are being asked, are more prone to get an investor as they will appear to be more grounded in the development of their product/invention.
Have a prototype not just a presentation
When looking at television pitches, you will notice that there is a common element among those pitches which are chosen and those which are not. Primarily, those which have prototype which has been tested are those which have the most success. Individuals that have a great slide show are typically given a pat on the back and a boot to the door. Why is this?Investors require physical evidence that your product will work. Where an idea is great, the product may or may not actually work or cost too much to produce. Secondly, a prototype will give you the weaknesses in the design. Investors want to see the process and the dedication that you have taken to get your product to a level that they want to invest in. Yes, you can have an idea that someone just loves, but if you go into a pitch with “I have thought up the formula to everlasting youth” without having something to back it up beyond a poster board your pitch will fail.Depending on your new product idea, you have different types of Prototypes
Keep it simple
A pitch should be no more than 2 minutes max. Anything over this and you are going to start losing the interest of the investor. Once the pitch is done they will ask you for additional information about the product. That being stated, ensure that you allocate appropriate time to the story, the problem, the solution, and why they should invest.
Follow the rules of submission
Every show has a set of rules in order to make a pitch. Where the “reality” shows may show a line of people going down the sidewalk, the reality of these shows is that every one of those people has already submitted their paperwork and has gotten a call back to attend the show. There are a few shows that mix open calls with those which have submitted all the forms, but your chances for getting on a show off the street are about as much as winning the lottery, especially since security, liability, and ratings are at the forefront of the networks.
How to pitch an invention idea?
Pitching your idea to get on TV is a process, but one worth doing. Take the time to know your product, develop a prototype, and present it in a memorable way and you are sure to do well. What unique spin you put on the product/invention is up to you. Now that you have the information, what network can we tune into to see your idea?For more information on inventing for profit, request our “How To” guide.