I recently got an email from a sales professional telling me that although they appreciate my desire to help inventors, I was actually doing inventors a disservice by teaching them how to sell products to retailers on their own. The concern was that Inventors could hinder their opportunity of bringing their products to market if they made the wrong move, etc. and should always seek a professional’s help. This random email got me thinking and inspired me to write this article.

The truth is that I think Inventors should always seek professional assistance from people who can help you succeed. In fact, if you found an awesome sales rep that can help you position your product for chain store success and can get your products into stores, then you should absolutely go for it! Why wouldn’t you? It’s like everything you do in life…find people who have the skill set to get you where you need to go and make it happen! So in no way does the information I provide insinuate that you shouldn’t seek help. You should always be on the lookout for someone who can help you win.

But here’s why I teach you to go after chain stores yourself…When I started as a Manufacturers Rep, I had no clue as to how to get stuff into stores. So I got hired by a Manufacturing company in New York with the hopes of learning how. Turns out the Manufacturer didn’t show me the ropes on how to get products into stores and I had to learn the hard way – I had to learn through trial and error. In other words, I was in the same boat as many of you.

Here’s what I learned from this experience:

1) There was no information related to exactly how to sell products to chain stores (which I found really annoying) and…

2) Selling to chain stores is not brain surgery. You just need to understand how to prep your product for chain store success and how to get buyer’s to buy.

This is pretty learnable stuff even for people who don’t consider themselves ‘salesy.’ Why? Because the retail industry is different…buyers don’t really care about your personality, they care about your product and whether it will generate revenue.

Anyhow, over the years, what I learned about inventors is that most of them continue to have a really hard time finding manufacturer’s reps to help them. Either the rep promises the inventor the world or the inventor simply can’t find anyone to represent them. And the truth is, this issue comes up in every single workshop and class that I have ever taught. So the purpose of teaching you how to get your products into stores is to:

1) Help you get your business off of the ground

2) Teach you the steps that Manufacturers Reps use to get products into stores so that at least you can get empowered to make decisions accordingly. I believe information is power, so the more information you have about how buyers make decisions to buy, the better shot you have at success.

And ultimately, I really believe (at my core), that you cannot destroy your chances at success if you go after chain stores yourself. I know people disagree with me, but I just don’t believe it! I’ve seen too many products get into chain stores by entrepreneurs who had no previous experience selling to chain stores. You just need to understand the basics and prepare your product accordingly. Plus, I have made many mistakes over the years with products and still eventually got products into chain stores. So I just don’t believe that anything you do will truly destroy your chances of success.

BTW…if you are an inventor who is looking for a Manufacturer’s Rep to help you sell your products, check out the following video I created on this topic.

Anyhow, my point in writing this article it to let you know that I think you should absolutely try and find a professional to help grow your business. But if you can’t or things aren’t working out as planned, there are options available for you. And you should never give up just because you can’t get the support of a professional.

And although this article might sound like a sales pitch, I actually believe the stuff that I’m writing. And whether you get help from me or someone else doesn’t matter. What matters to me is that you take the necessary action steps to help your business win.

To your success,