How To License A Product or Idea to Companies?


Have you ever been working with a product you purchased from the store or online and thought to yourself about an add-on you would put on the product? The add-on’s purpose is not to make it more fancy but rather to make the product more useful. Well, that is exactly what inventor Stephen Key talks about in his book, One Simple Idea. The book is not only designed to get you thinking but also provide you with the tools toward licensing your idea and reaching financial success. In this reading, I will talk briefly about what Stephen Key said and provide my own evaluation on his book.

The book One Simple Idea is split up into 7 parts and each part contains multiple chapters.

Part 1 – The Power of One Simple Idea

When you envision your life 5 to 10 years down the road, where do you see yourself? Do you see yourself achieving your life’s dream(s) and/or being financially stable? The answer here is for you to accomplish both. Everyone is striving to be their own boss but unfortunately not everyone gets to live the life they dream of without hard work. Working hard does not also mean draining yourself and then quitting because you did not reach your goal. The reality is their is no such thing as a goal. The minute you reach your goal, you are entering the beginning of a new level.

In One Simple Idea, Stephen Key refers to the beauty of open innovation. Yes, I was just as confused as you are when I read the term. What is open innovation? Open innovation is the ability for an individual to connect with a company (small, mid size, or large) that owns an existing product and offer to put a spin on it. The simple change in an existing product can reap huge rewards for the company. This means that a company can re-invent their product without having to develop a new one.

Companies are opening their doors and relying on people like you and me to bring forward an idea to them so they can compete with their competitors. The greatest part about licensing your idea to a company is for the fact that you do no have to do anything in terms of manufacturing, marketing, and accounting for it. As an inventor of the the re-invented product all you have to do is sit tight and make sure the checks clear at the end of each quarter.

Part 2 – Find Your Million Dollar Idea

No matter how you see it, we are using different products everyday. We just need to look and think of the ones that we believe has a market potential. To do that we must study the market see what is hot currently, what is selling, what is not selling, and which company is struggling against their competitors. A struggling competitor means that we have an option at securing a deal with them easier than their competitors. We just have to show them how the re-invented product can put them at number one. The way we do that is by getting creative in the way we present our idea. Stephen Key shows you how to talk to a potential licensee.

Waking up sleeping dinosaurs means bringing back to life products that people have forgotten about. Products that no one ever thinks would change because they are so simple. Products that have been the same for decades. All it takes is One Simple Idea. Those are the words of Stephen Key. An example of a sleeping dinosaur is the guitar pick. The guitar pick is one idea no one would think of but Stephen Key’s friend did and Stephen helped him. They transformed the guitar pick in skull look with the same old three corner edge feel. However, Stephen Key does mention that the biggest issue with it that his companies did not want to license it. Therefore, they decided to manufacturing and it took forever to get accomplished with a total cost for the entire operation coming close to quarter of a million.

My Evaluation

This book is a goldmine because Stephen Key is not trying to just sell you a book. He is selling a book that shows you how to become successful from step A to step Z. How you take the information and proceed with it is based on how you comprehend it. If you feel like you missed a point then you show definitely go back into the reading. His process works and he mentions that in the book. Many of his students have succeeded and produced their own ideas and licensed their products. Finally, this book is not a bum. This book is a winner and I recommend you check it out.

Additionally, check out Stephen Key’s website, Inventright where he has bootcamps for selling, consulting services, and more.

Disclaimer: I am not associated with Stephen Key or his website. I just read books and provide my evaluation and direction.

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