Fuentek's Tech Transfer Blog

TTOs Need to Assess Market Fit Before Marketing (Poll Results)

Our most recent poll asked the question:

What does your TTO do with a technology once the patenting process has started: wait for the patent to issue, assess the tech’s fit in the market, or begin marketing?

Results are in and, as you can see below, the vast majority of respondents are going ahead with marketing. It’s true that you can begin marketing before the patent has issued, but Fuentek recommends fully assessing the market fit for the technology before marketing.

Even though you already conducted a technology screening, an in-depth assessment of the market allows you to validate what you found in the screening and greatly informs your marketing strategy. (And if you didn’t conduct a screening, read this post about the value of screenings.) The data you found in the screening was valuable, but because it was rapid research it’s not enough insight to enable you to fully understand the market and perform efficient and effective marketing.

In assessing the market fit for your technology, you conduct thorough market-based research to understand whom you’re going to be talking to about the technology and why. You can then use this information to construct target lists and determine what kind of marketing collateral you will need and what communication vehicles are best suited to reaching your targets. All of this is critical information that will help you approach marketing strategically. So the assessment isn’t just another research step. It’s actually the homework you need to launch an appropriately scoped marketing campaign with a better chance for success.

Webinar: Stop Reacting, Start Proacting: Planning for Strategic Technology MarketingEditor’s note: For more about this, check out our “Stop Reacting, Start Proacting: Planning for Strategic Technology Marketing” webinar.

BTW, we actually advise performing the market-based assessment before pursuing the patent since it can sometimes inform the claims for new uses, bring to light competing technologies that may be prior art, or determine that the technology was not as unique or advanced as the inventor initially thought. But in cases where a patent must be filed faster, either due to a stat bar or because of market timing, the assessment can be done during the patent-filing process.

So although our poll showed that many TTOs are anxious to get started with marketing their technologies, taking the time to assess the market fit will most certainly help you make better use of your marketing dollars.

For those of you out there who do assess the market fit for a technology you’re offering up for licensing, how does your TTO go about doing that?