Your source for expert commentary on IP management issues.
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Editor-in-Chief, Anatole Krattiger
Why This Topic Is Important
The processes of market discovery and market formation often occur simultaneously for early stage
technologies, which presents great challenges for those seeking to license them. This section discusses
the nature of market opportunities for new technologies and how technology transfer can best approach
them. For this scientist, this means stepping outside of the world of science, and looking back on your
invention to see it for the first time how the rest of the world sees it.
Key Implications and Best Practices: Section 12
Given that IP management is heavily context specific, these Key Implications and Best Practices are intended as starting points to be adapted to specific needs and circumstances.
- The “unique selling proposition” of your technology—in other words, the features, advantages, or benefits it offers—is probably not the science behind the technology. The science behind an invention is usually not its selling point.
- Technology marketing is a process by which owners of a technology create relationships, between themselves and potential users, that will enable the technology to be developed and made widely available, through commercialization or other methods.
- Negotiating between public and private sectors ought not be confrontational and should be seen as an opportunity to forge a long-lasting and mutually beneficial relationship. Put differently, negotiating a fair licensing agreement should not be seen just as a process of “bargaining” toward a win-win outcome.
- You should think about the practical applications of your inventions. Or dream about them! And share your ideas about what applications you think your invention might have. Good marketing makes a technology understandable and attractive to buyers.
- As much as your science may be interesting and fascinating, when you speak to potential licensees or investors, it is often best not to place emphasis on the science. Rather, in extremely simple language, stress the potential applications of your invention.
- Remember to keep an eye on newly published patents and patent applications. They can help inform R&D decisions and keep you abreast of the latest technical developments in your field.
- Collaborations create contacts. Contacts build networks. Networks provide opportunities.
- Your contacts and network can help your technology transfer office’s marketing efforts. For example, private sector colleagues may facilitate licensing deals with their organizations.
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