How eBay Deals With Counterfeit Products

If you’re going to be a product entrepreneur, sooner or later you will have to deal with counterfeit products. It doesn’t matter if you’re a tiny one item inventor or NIKE, it happens to everyone.

counterfeit products

counterfeit products

The first time I heard about a counterfeiter I looked up “wrist water bottle” on the search engines and found a picture of me wearing my own product on a Chinese website. Since it had a phone number I called them up. When they were trying to sell me my own product they spoke perfect English, until I told them they were selling a counterfeit product and I owned the intellectual property. Suddenly, “no English”.

When I found counterfeiters selling my product on ebay I called up the company to let them know. As a company that deals with multiple people selling everything from used bikes to used chewing gum thrown away by Brittany Spears, they have to keep a handle on counterfeits. [Read more…]

Product Entrepreneur – Prototype

product entrepreneur

product entrepreneur

I remember trying to explain my first product, swiggies, wrist water bottles when I didn’t have a tangible bottle to show. “It’s a bottle that straps onto your wrist and has a pull top like a regular sports bottle.” People were picturing a regular water bottle that simply strapped onto your wrist.

Even when I made a clay prototype, it still didn’t quite register. The clay was molded into a small bottle type figure that sat on top of the wrist and had a vel-stretch band through it to keep it from moving. The cap opened and closed like a sports bottle.

It wasn’t until I had the finished product in the packaging that people finally went “Oh, I get it!”

Because most people can’t visualize something exactly the way you can with your own vision. So, if you plan on licensing, or even manufacturing yourself, it’s good to have some type of prototype for several reasons. [Read more…]

Product Entrepreneur – Inventor’s Notebook

inventor's notebook

inventor’s notebook

An inventor’s notebook, or also called a logbook, is a special notebook designed for inventors to keep track of all of the details of their invention. This has always been important in the U.S. because we’ve always been a first to invent country. But that will all change on March 16, 2013 when the America Invents Act kicks in.

The first to invent means that the inventor has conceived and “reduced to practice” their idea. So, until March 16, 2012 the inventor’s notebook will be critical. Even after that date, keeping an inventor’s notebook will still add value to your invention. Why wouldn’t you do it anyway? It’s free. And just added proof that the idea is yours and you have been actively working to get it on the market.

You can technically use any kind of bound notebook that can’t be changed or altered, but I like to use ones like The Inventor’s Logbook: An Essential Record Keeping System It includes everything you need to know to document your idea and shows you how to do it step by step.
[Read more…]

Product Entrepreneurs

I just got back last week from speaking at the ASD international retail conference in Vegas. The speech was on using innovation for competitive advantage. I was happy to see such a good turn out, not just for my speech, but for the whole conference.

ASD is a consumer goods trade show, which is actually 6 shows in 1. Gift, fashion, jewelry, health, beauty, and toys/novelty. It was a huge gathering of manufacturers from around the world and was hard to take in the whole show in one day. It wasn’t all work and no play. The first night was a rockin’ 80’s party hosted by 80’s pop star Debbie Gibson.

product entrepreneur

product entrepreneur

What surprised me as I walked the show was the number of products that have been on the market for years that I’ve never heard of. Like the all natural, non toxic insect repelling Bug Button and Super Band. Or the Chillit Bags beverage coolers.

Then there were the new products like Kisstixx. Dallas Robinson and Mike Buonomo were big winners on Shark Tank when one of the sharks, Mark Cuban, took a liking to their products and made them partners. Kisstixx is a great example of putting a new twist on an old idea, chap stick. The idea is that a chemical reaction is created from two different flavors when 2 people kiss. Their new product is just as cool…breath spray that does the same thing. Even without the kissing partner, their chap stick is the best I’ve ever tried. I met them at their booth at the show and they are genuinely nice, down to earth guys. I wish them the best. [Read more…]