This post is part of a series of posts titled “what to do before meeting your IP advisor”.

One of the most important steps in obtaining patent protection for your invention is to know the market in hand. An overview of the landscape can make your patent stronger, and make your product stand out commercially.

Since patent protection for products is obtained for business reasons, you will need to have a general understanding of how the product fits in your business plans in order to get the optimal protection plan. The commercial landscape of your product is probably the biggest piece in the puzzle, keeping in mind three important points that will eventually affect all stages of development:

1. Before meeting your IP advisor, familiarize yourself with the main players in the field of the invention, and especially the ones who have developed a solution to the problem you are trying to solve. We address them as “players” and not “competitors” for a reason – sometimes collaborations, acquisitions or other means of licensing can be the best option for your invention.

2. The second important point is an understanding of the existing technologies aiming to solve the problem you are trying to solve. The insights you will get by mapping the current available technologies will help develop a better invention and help you take key business decisions in utilizing the invention.

3. After getting a general understanding of the available technologies, another important aspect you will need to generally understand is how the product will generate revenue within the market in hand.

Market landscape for your invention will help you develop a better invention and will help your IP advisor to file and obtain a stronger patent. Try to provide your IP advisor with as much information as you can, keeping in mind the four points above.

Look out for a later tip that will talk about your future market.