(c) 2004 Market Launchers, Inc.




Editor:  Paul Niemann





EDITOR’S NOTES:   We bring you 3 more great articles in this edition, but first, here’s some important news for you as an inventor …


I’ve brought together representatives from 7 companies who are looking for new products to acquire or license, and some of them are VERY BIG companies. I’m currently setting up a private web page where you will be able to have YOUR INVENTIONS posted on this page so that these companies will them. It’s a 3-month window of opportunity for you … you will receive all the details next Wednesday via e-mail.


In this issue, Article # 1 is written for an audience of internet marketers, but the message is appropriate for inventors, too. It could save you from a lot of hassles – and save you from losing a ton of money inventing the wrong types of products.


Article # 2 is written by a very successful inventor, Mike Marks of InventionCity.com. Mike is one of the roughly 2% of inventors who profit from their inventions. The article is from his book, Inventing: First Steps.


Article # 3 is from my syndicated newspaper column and book, INVENTION MYSTERIES: The Little-Known Stories Behind Well-Known Inventions.




Best Regards,


Paul Niemann

President of MarketLaunchers.com








“Inventions have long since reached their limit, and I see no hope for further developments,  Roman engineer Julius Sextus Frontinus in 10 A.D.


“That’s an amazing invention, but who would ever want to use one of them?” President Rutherford B. Hayes when Alexander Graham Bell presented him with a working model of his invention in 1876. Bell’s went on to become the most valuable patent in history.




Article # 1:       It’s Essential You Only Market Products That People Want,” by Willie Crawford


Article # 2:       “Guesstimate of Invention Value,” by Mike Marks, author of the book, Inventing: First Steps


Article # 3:       Which Presidents are Better Inventors: Republicans or Democrats?” by Paul Niemann, author of the book, Invention Mysteries




Article # 1:      It’s Essential You Only Market Products That People Want,” by Willie Crawford


Is your online business generating the standard of living that you envisioned when you first started? Are you working the hours you want and meeting your income goals?  Are people buying the things that you offer them like hotcakes?


If your answer to the above questions is "no" then there's a good chance that you're either marketing the wrong product, or you're marketing it in the  wrong  way. Countless online marketers are marketing the wrong products and don't even realize it. Let's take a look at why that's so and how you can remedy it.


There is a fairly simple "formula" for determining what products or services you should be offering your customers. I once heard Marlon Sanders express it perfectly. He said,  "Whatever they're buying, that's what I'm selling."  He meant, he lets his market tell him what they want and that's what he offers them.  Brilliantly simple!


Don't offer what you think your market needs or wants. If you do, you’re going about it all wrong.  They don't buy what they need -- they do buy what they want.  However, they often don't want what you think that they want.  So you absolutely must offer what your market * tells you*  that it wants and shows you that it is willing to pay for. 


Did you catch the second part of that last sentence? The often-overlooked factors are that they must want it, must be willing to pay for it, and must be able to pay for it.  Miss any of these three elements and you have a product that isn't going to make you a success.  The part that I see a lot of marketers miss is the third part. They have a product that the market wants but they offer it to segments of the market that can't afford it... or are convinced that they can't afford it.


These marketers go on a crusade trying to convince their market that this product is just what they need and that the product will make their lives perfect.  These marketers

refuse to acknowledge that even if their market does *need* their product, they won't pay for it.  That's a losing formula.


Many marketers who create their own products also do it all wrong.  Don't create a product and then go in search of a market.  Research the market first to let them prove to you what they really want.  You can do this by doing surveys, or observing what is being heavily promoted in the pay per click search engines. You can also notice what problems your market is discussing on discussion forums and in e-mails. They will often show you a problem that they want solved.


Once you've identified a problem, confirm there is sufficient demand to make it worthwhile for you to create a solution.  Make sure that the market for that type of product is not already over-saturated, but don't be afraid of competition.  Competition proves that there is demand.  When you notice a niche that no one is serving, ask why that might be. 


When you see an "unfilled niche," it's very possible that the product idea you have has been tried before and proved not viable.  You don't really want to be a "trailblazer" or "pioneer."  Top Internet marketers know that pioneers get arrows in their backs.  Top Internet marketers "go for the low hanging fruit."  Consider fast food restaurants in any major city. They generally locate where all of the other restaurants are and just point out what is different about their cuisine.  That gives them a greater chance for success since other restaurants have already validated that the location is a winner.


So the formula that you want to follow is simply to let the market tell you what it wants and then offer it to them.  They tell you this everyday if you're really listening.  Really listen, and then respond to what they are telling you and you're virtually assured to be a success.  Just make your motto, "Whatever they're buying, that's what I'm selling."


Copyright 2004 Willie Crawford


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About the Author:


Willie Crawford is a corporate president, published author, seminar speaker and host, tele-seminar speaker and host, retired military officer, karate black belt, network marketing trainer, and lifetime student of marketing.  He shows people how to actually generate substantial income on-line using very simple systems.  An example of such a system can be studied and duplicated at:  http://ProfitMagician.com





Article # 2:      “Guesstimate of Invention Value,” by Mike Marks, author of the book, Inventing: First Steps


The basic equation for guesstimating the value of your invention is:


Market Size X Market Share X Wholesale Price X Royalty = Maximum Invention Value of License


Market Size X Market Share X Wholesale Price X Net Profit =
Maximum Value of New Business


This number needs to be tempered by your odds of success.  As a last step multiply your final number by a gut feeling on your odds of success.  If you are willing to devote several full time years of your life and have no doubt that you’ll achieve maximum success your odds might be 75%.  If you are merely willing to put in a little effort and see where it goes then odds of 5% might be reasonable.

Example of SuperWidget:


A widget is a thingamajig that does something-or-other.  In this example a typical widget sells for $20.  We’ve done our homework and believe that 10 million widgets are sold each year.  Our new SuperWidget is so incredibly good that everyone who sees our prototype says they’ll buy SuperWidgets instead of old-fashioned widgets.  We expect SuperWidget to sell for the same $20 price as the old fashioned widgets.  A royalty of 4% is on the high side for the widget industry but plausible because SuperWidget is so super.  Our guesstimate of value looks like this:


50 million units (5 year market size) X 50% (market share) X $20/unit
= $500 million X 4% (inventor royalty)
= $20 million Maximum Value of Invention License


Use 50% for odds of success:


$20 million X 50% = $10 million potential return


I’d say a potential return of $10 million merits serious attention.  Actually that depends on how much that potential return costs me.   If I need to spend $10 million in real dollars to earn a weighted (theoretical) return of $10 million, then it’s hardly a good investment.

Now remember how we came up with this number.  It’s not something you’d want to bet your life on.  You can’t count on it in any way at all.  It simply serves as a yardstick for determining whether or not your effort will be well spent.  Remember our VC number, we’re looking for 5X to 10X our investment.


The Utility of 10%:


Whenever you’re in doubt about assigning odds of success or market share and you have no particular reason for choosing one number over another, choose 10%.  It’s easy and plausible to imagine you’ve got a 10% chance of success and will manage to get 10% of a given market.  Empirically, in my experience, 10% also seems pretty accurate.


Some Words on Sweat


All inventors should heed the words of Thomas Edison:  "Inventing is 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration."


In other words, the idea is the easy part. I would add further, that once an inventor starts perspiring, it's hard to stop. Each hour or dollar spent developing an idea can become justification to spend yet another hour, yet another dollar, until fatigue, an empty bank account, or just possibly success, ends the cycle.


When you have a great idea it’s hard to be realistic about its chances of success.  It’s even harder when you hear stories about how persistence pays off.  Persistence does pay off … if the requirements for success are there.  Other times persistence can lead to throwing away hard-to-find time and good money.


Work hard.  Get honest input from people you trust.  Be honest with yourself.  If the idea seems unlikely to succeed you should drop. 


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About the Author:


For more than a decade Mike Marks has been active in creating and marketing new products and forming new businesses. As a co-founder of WorkTools, Inc. Endeavor Products Company, Sandjam'R and Accentra he has managed the design, manufacturing, marketing, patenting and licensing of products such as the Gator-Grip® Universal Socket and the Black & Decker PowerShot® staple gun. Over the past seven years products developed by WorkTools have generated over $300 million in retail sales and over $5 million in royalties. In his book, Inventing: First Steps, he tells you how to evaluate, protect and prototype your invention on a tight budget. 75-page printed book costs $29.95 including S&H and is sent via first class mail. 75-page e-book (Adobe PDF file) sent via email within 24 hours, costs $18.95 w/ processing charge. To order your own copy of Mike’s new e-book, please visit http://store.yahoo.com/i-city/infirstep.html





Article # 3:         “Which Presidents are Better Inventors: Republicans or Democrats?


With the 2004 elections upon us, the Political Division of Invention Mysteries World Headquarters has issued its prediction for the presidential election.


Several U.S. presidents were inventors before they moved into the White House, so we take a look at how this could influence the election results. With my loyal and bipartisan dog, Patent, watching over me to make sure that I score this contest accurately, we’ve devised a system that’s fair to both parties.


Votes will be awarded as follows:


In chronological order, we begin with Thomas Jefferson, who was by far the greatest presidential inventor in U.S. history. Jefferson created at least nine successful inventions, including: A moldboard plow, a wheel cipher, a spherical sundial, a portable copying press, automatic double doors, the bookstand, the swivel chair, the dumbwaiter and a macaroni machine. That’s 18 votes if you’re keeping score at home. He also introduced French fries, ice cream, waffles, and macaroni to the U.S.


Abe Lincoln invented a solution to help him navigate a boat through shallow waters while he was an Illinois Congressman. He was issued Patent # 6,469 for “A Device for Buoying Vessels Over Shoals” in 1849. Lincoln never commercialized his invention, but he made a wooden model of it which sits in the Smithsonian Institution. Score two points for Lincoln ’s Republican Party.


Even though Lincoln ’s successor, Andrew Johnson, didn’t invent the process of impeachment, he was the first U.S. president to actually be impeached (he was impeached by the House but acquitted by one vote in the Senate). Deduct three votes, but for which party? Johnson was both a Democrat and a Republican during his career, so his negative votes get thrown out.


Enter another Republican president, Rutherford B. Hayes. President Hayes was not an inventor, but we deduct two votes from his party under the “Acts Unbecoming of a President” clause instituted at the beginning of this column. Some might even say that Hayes’s offense, like Johnson’s, was an impeachable one. What was his crime?


Upon seeing a demonstration of Alexander Graham Bell’s telephone in 1876, Hayes failed to realize its benefits at first. He remarked, “That’s an amazing invention, but who would ever want to use one of them?”  By the way, the “B” in his middle name stands for “Birchard.”


Another Republican, Teddy Roosevelt, gets two votes for the teddy bear that bears his name. Roosevelt didn’t patent the teddy bear because he’s not the one who created it. It was invented by Morris Michtom, who named it after the president and presented it to him as a gift in 1903.


Deduct three votes for the Republican Party for Richard Nixon’s impeachment and subsequent resignation. His negative votes get cancelled out by Democrat Bill Clinton’s impeachment, though.


So there you have it – the entire 215-year history of presidential inventions in a nutshell. Now it’s time to count up the votes to see which party will occupy the White House for the next four years. Drumroll, please.


The votes are in, and it doesn’t look good for either party. The Republicans, with Lincoln, Hayes, Roosevelt and Nixon, have minus one vote, while the Democrats have minus three votes because of Clinton ’s impeachment. This means that Thomas Jefferson’s party is the winner. To which party did Jefferson belong?


He was a member of – and I’m not making this up – the “Democratic-Republican Party.” When Jefferson was first elected in 1801, the nation didn’t have the same two-party system that it has today. There were additional political parties during the 1800’s, such as the Federalists and the Whigs.


I think we need a re-count.

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About the Author:


This story is from Paul’s syndicated newspaper column, INVENTION MYSTERIES: The Little-Known Stories Behind Well-Known Inventions. To get a copy of the first INVENTION MYSTERIES book (which is based on the columns), visit www.InventionMysteries.com. The book makes a perfect Christmas gift.






Click here to get your own web page for your invention.