Nine Mistakes New Producers Make

Don  Debelak, author of One Stop Invention, lists Nine Mistakes that Producers and Inventors Make and what to do to avoid them.

Although Don’s tips take us a step beyond selling to gift stores, but many of these nine points will still apply.

Below I have highlighted the main tips that I see often with new producers in the gift industry.

The Nine Most Common Mistakes Inventors Make

by Don Debelak

Inventors succeed all the time, but many more inventors fail, many with excellent ideas that could be successful.  So knowing the mistakes inventors commonly make can help you avoid those mistakes, and help you turn your idea into a big winner.

1. Inadequate distribution plan …

2. No help from industry insiders …

3. Spending money too fast …

4. Targeting too large a market

You need to create a certain amount of market momentum to succeed. Since inventors typically have limited resources, they often have a tough time penetrating a big market. For example, a company with a new kitchen product will probably do best by concentrating on kitchen stores, smaller stores that won’t worry about the company size. If the inventors go after Wal-Mart, or department stores, they will need many more resources to market their product, plus they will need to go through many hoops to prove to the big retailers they have the ability to supply them.

5. Vague product benefits …

6. Short-changed sales effort …

7. Failure to plan for the transitional period …

8. Poor product packaging

Companies spend months developing packaging, conveying their products’ benefits quickly, and honing the packaging copy that helps consumers buy. Inventors often think of packaging as an afterthought, instead of realizing that over 30% success can often be related to the package itself. If you are investing in patents, prototypes, trade shows and initial runs, you must also invest in packaging and hire professional help to at least review the packaging design and copy.

9. High manufacturing cost

Your product must not cost more to manufacturer than 20 to 25% of the end user price. If you don’t have that much, you won’t money.  You need to make money every month in order to have the resources you need to expand. The costs of marketing, product returns, sales commissions, trade shows as well administrative costs like product liability insurance will eat up all your profits if you don’t have your manufacturing costs in the right range.


If any of the above points speak to you, I suggest you read his full article

2 comments for “Nine Mistakes New Producers Make

  1. August 21, 2012 at 1:56 pm

    Excellent tips! I can personally attest to how much making mistake # 8 can hurt. I introduced a great new product line, but with the wrong packaging, my customers have no good way of displaying the items. Paying the high cost of repackaging may be our only option

  2. August 21, 2012 at 2:14 pm

    Oh no Andrea! So sorry to hear that!! Just for future reference, it is a good idea to make friends with a local gift shop and periodically ask their opinion of your new product, packaging or pricing. These folks can be a great help!

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