Posts Tagged ‘rocket science’

A Potentially Riveting and Possibly Informative Series on How To Be a Toy Inventor

The other night at dinner at one of my son’s Cub Scout events, we were making idle chitchat with another set of parents sitting at our table. Like always with people who don’t know each other very well, the conversation inevitably gets around to jobs.  “So, what do YOU do?”

Truthfully, I dread it when people ask me this.  I always have a brief thought that they won’t believe me when I tell them or that they’ll think I wasn’t being serious.  After I answer, “Um, we invent toys”, there is always an moment of confusion in the face of the asker which is then followed closely by, “Whaaat?  People do that?  Do YOU make them?  What’s your biggest hit?  You must be a millionaire!”  (Always, always a leap to being a millionaire for some reason.)

To which I have my standard reply: “Haha, yes, it’s a real job and we’ve been able to pay our bills doing it so far. No, not personally, they are usually made in Asia. (That always prompts a WHOLE other conversation.) Probably nothing you’ve heard of unless you have a pool. No, we’re not, because we didn’t invent something like Furby, Barbie or Monopoly.” (. . .yet)

Most people don’t really understand how inventing works or what we do at Gigglicious.  So, I thought, what a good time to sum up the process of how we invent, what it takes to get a product on store shelves and briefly everything in between.  I’ve got a seven part series lined up.  Yes, seven.  (It’s not a simple process, people.)  If you know of anyone remotely interested in learning about our business, clue them in that this is coming.

In a somewhat timely fashion, here’s what we’ll cover:

Part 1: The Creative Process and all the Einsteins out there in the Universe

Part 2: Research, “Dang, it’s been done before”, and Patents

Part 3: Design of the Times or “Seriously, how can we really get this to work?”

Part 4: Prototyping or “Making the Industrial Design degree pay off!”

Part 5: A Wee Bit of Marketing, Presentations and Technology Voodoo

Part 6: Yippee, somebody bought it.  What happens now?

Part 7: “Am I Rich Now?”: Royalties and the rest…

I know what you are thinking, “This will keep me on the edge of my seat!”  Am I right?  Well, probably not, but if it educates just one person about the toy industry and inventors, well, then I’ve done what I set out to do, hopefully.  Perhaps you’ll be riveted.  Perhaps you’ll be semi-informed.    Just maybe I fulfilled some curiosity.  Or, maybe YOU’LL be an inventor too when you see how this all works.  It’s not rocket science!

P.S. Sorry, but in the case of the Super Soaker water gun and inventor Lonnie Johnson, it actually IS rocket science.  Do your homework and look it up on Wikipedia.

“Invention, my dear friends, is 93% perspiration, 6% electricity, 4% evaporation, and 2% butterscotch ripple.”   – Willy Wonka