Intellectual property and licensing are all around your business, regardless of its size. Each time you use software on your computer, add content to the company website or use company procedures you are using a license or creating intellectual property. IP is intangible but it’s important to recognise it for 3 main reasons...
- To protect your IP from intellectual property theft
- To add commercial value to your company
- To recognise potential licensing opportunities
Having an open mind and the ability to recognise its potential value is very important but could your IP also be licensed? Answering 'yes' to the following questions could help identify a licensing opportunity!
Could my IP have useful applications in similar business fields?
Could it be created in different formats to increase function and appeal?
Could it be bundled with other IP to create a more substantial product?
Some of the following IP examples could be potential licensed products…
- Bespoke software created specifically for a company application
- A successful sales or training program you developed
- A technology, pattern or design a non-competing business could use
- A proven company logistics, admin, stock taking or HR system
- The content of a workshop, show or performance that could be licensed in different areas
- Contracts and agreements that would save others time and money for a similar purpose
Unfortunately, unlike tangible products, intellectual property isn’t always obvious and recognised as an asset, let alone a licensing opportunity. If you don't know what IP you have and how to record and secure it you could be undervaluing your company and losing out on potential profit streams.
If you have IP that could be commercialised and licensed then obviously you need to let others know about it. You will need to actively promote your intellectual property as a licensing opportunity. At the very least, you will need to set up a separate web page with all the relevant details. This will include who to contact so interested parties have a focal point of information about your licensing opportunity.
If your IP is a substantial entity, consider setting up a dedicated website to provide more comprehensive information. Use video, diagrams and graphics where appropriate to showcase what you're offering. Your blog and other information portals are also good places to highlight what you have to offer. Also post details about your licensing opportunity on social media and link it back to your dedicated IP website or webpage for more information.
Potential licensees want a proven product that will make them money so it's very important to provide proof that your IP works and has a record of success. If you can, show examples with proven results how your IP works. Include sales figures over a set period of time with customer testimonials. Put yourself in the licensee's shoes. Anything you can do to convince them that your IP is a valuable investment and will generate additional revenue will increase your chances of success.
The point is, potential licensing opportunities are all around you. You just need to have an open mind and develop a licensing mindset. Once you do, you open yourself up to new revenue streams and the possibility of a licensee paying you each time they use your product.
Intellectual property also includes your expertise, knowledge and skills which can be turned into a commercially viable product to sell or license. Remember this; "There are two products for everything, what you do or know already and showing others others how to do the same". Bear this in mind when assessing your IP as a licensing opportunity.
All products ready for licensing can have a free listing on this website. If you need any help with getting your product ready for licensing and marketing it, please don't hesitate to get in touch using our contact page.