Making Hard Choices: How and When to Shut Down Technology Marketing Efforts, Part 3

Last week, I talked about a technology transfer marketing effort that never should have been launched. But in pursuing your marketing efforts, you may find that interest and the potential for success waxes and wanes over time depending on events beyond your control. Let’s take a look at what can happen, based on Fuentek’s observations.

Example 3: A Roller Coaster Ride
Your technology commercialization assessment for a piece of software yields positive feedback and interest is great enough to warrant moving forward with marketing. Unfortunately due to resource constraints, significant time elapses between completion of the assessment and the start of marketing. In the meantime, key inventors move on to other projects, and thus have limited availability to support the marketing effort.

After launching the marketing effort, you quickly generate several viable leads. But without access to the inventors, you cannot demonstrate the software or enable the prospects to test it. The leads grow cold. The technology continues to be passively marketed with an online listing.

Sometime after moving into the passive marketing campaign, an unexpected national event occurs, spurring great interest in the technology. Organizations scramble to look for solutions to the event, many of which could be aided by your client’s technology. Suddenly, the phone is ringing off the hook and the prospect pipeline is full again.

Unfortunately, the inventors still are unable to participate in the technology’s commercialization, and the prospects are not interested in the technology without access to the inventors.

Lesson Learned: Lack of access to the inventors is always a high hurdle to overcome. No matter how good the technology is, if you cannot bring the necessary resources to bear, shut the marketing effort down and remove the technology from your Web site. Otherwise, you risk damaging your credibility by taking in leads that you do not have the resources to follow through on.

–By Laura A. Schoppe

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Posted by Laura Schoppe

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