There’s a line of dialogue in Black Adder III (Episode 4 Sense & Senility) where Black Adder is looking for a new job. The line goes “…there’s a fellow called George Stephenson…has invented a moving kettle…wants someone to help with the marketing….”
George Stephenson’s Rocket is famous. The steam engine won the Rainhill Trials held in 1829. The trials decided which locomotive would be used for the Liverpool to Manchester railway (L&MR).
The Rocket and the Stephensons never looked back, even when William Huskisson was killed on the opening day of the L&MR by the locomotive. Not many new products could survive that kind of publicity.
Inventions are a particular kind of new product. Inventions are new products in new markets. Diversification is the most risky growth strategy. Inventions are new products to the world as well as the business.
Every market is a need. Understanding the unmet need or the better way of meeting that need is not easy. In order to adopt a new product, the market has to recognize the value of the better way.
George Stephenson was in the right place at the right time – a definition of marketing. It wasn’t luck that got him there. It was hard work. Marketing is hard work, particularly at the start.
I think in many ways it comes down to exposure. It’s relationship building, relationship nurturing, until you find those people who can take you further on your journey. The people who believe in you and your new invention. Ultimately it’s those people who will work with you and invest time and money to realize the better way.
You may not be looking for fame. You may not be looking for world domination. You are looking for a market for your new invention.