News / Economy

Gadget Inventors Reach Customers Through TV Ads

Gadget Inventors Reach Customers Through TV Adsi
X
February 18, 2014 12:24 AM
Many of the most innovative gadgets sold in America today are speciality items -- generally marketed through extravagant late-night TV commercials. These items also are sold through bulk mail advertisements that use the slogan “as seen on TV!” As VOA's Greg Flakus reports from Houston, this business can generate big profits for those who come up with successful products.
Greg Flakus
Many of the most innovative gadgets sold in America today are speciality items -- generally marketed through extravagant late-night TV commercials. These items also are sold through bulk mail advertisements that use the slogan “as seen on TV!” The business can generate big profits for those who come up with successful products.

TV ads offer U.S. viewers all kinds of unconventional products like the Bacon Bowl -- a device that molds fried bacon into an edible container.

It is probably safe to say that nobody really needs a Bacon Bowl or any of the other products advertised like this, but they do offer a level of convenience that appeals to a lot of people.

Another simple product is aimed at parents of small children who tend to spill things.

The Eggie

There is the Eggie -- which addresses the plight of those who hate to peel the shells off hard-boiled eggs -- and apparently, there are a lot of them. Six million boxes of this product have been sold, much to the delight of Betsy Kaufman, who came up with the idea at her home in Houston.

"You just crack an egg, like that, and then you put it into the Eggie," she said. After being boiled, the eggs are easy to extract, cut and combine with other food items.

But Kaufman did not develop the Eggie as it appears today, nor did she create a prototype, do a patent search, find a manufacturer or develop a marketing plan.

"A creative idea hit my brain and I followed through and submitted it, that is all I did," she said.

Kaufman submitted her basic idea along with a simple sketch and a $25 fee to North Carolina-based EdisonNation, a company that helps develop and market such products.

EdisonNation assists

The company takes a good portion of the product earnings as its fee. Kaufman said this is a better option for inventors, however, than trying to go it alone.

"They are bleeding money, getting a patent and a patent attorney, and that process can take years," she said.

There are a number of online forums for inventors that offer many of the same services, but Kaufman said EdisonNation suited her, and her success has created the urge to come up with another idea.

"Then the bug hits you, you are driving down the street and you are thinking, 'Oh, this would be a good idea, I had this luck with Eggies, so sure.' But then you get a big X mark through it -- it is not chosen. My brain may have only one Eggies in it," she said.

Based on market research, Kaufman has helped to create an Eggies 2, with a simpler design, and all she has to do now is wait to see how much profit it will generate.

You May Like

Obama: Alaskans Feel Signs of Climate Change

They're seeing bigger storm surges as sea ice melts, more wildfires, erosion of glaciers, shorelines More

Katrina Brought Enduring Changes to New Orleans

The city’s recovery is the result of the people and culture the city is famous for, as well as newcomers and start-up industries More

Magical Photo Slides Show Native Americans in Late 1800s

Walter McClintock spent 20 years photographing the Blackfoot Indians and their vanishing culture at the dawn of the modern age More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Yoshi from: Sapporo
February 18, 2014 8:45 PM
I agree eggie is a good idea. But I am sure hard-boiled eggs are easily peeled off shells if their bottoms are a bit cracked before being boiled.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalatesi
X
August 27, 2015 2:08 AM
Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Is China's Economic Data Accurate?

Some investors say China's wild stock market gyrations have been made worse by worries about the reliability of that nation's economic data. And some critics say the reports can mislead investors by painting an unrealistically-strong picture of the economy. A key China scholar says Beijing is not fudging ((manipulating)) the numbers, but that the economy is evolving quickly from smoke-stack industries to services, and the ways of tracking new economic activity are falling behind the change. V
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Shipping Containers Provide Experimental Housing

Housing prices around the San Francisco Bay area are out of reach for many people, so some young entrepreneurs, artists and tech industry workers are creating their own houses using converted shipping containers. But as VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports from Oakland, the effort requires ingenuity and dealing with restrictive local laws.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video Technique May Eliminate Drill-and-Fill Dental Care

Many people dread visiting dentists because they're afraid of drills. Now, however, a technology developed by a British firm promises to eliminate the need for mechanical cleaning of dental cavities by speeding a natural process of tooth repair. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.
Video

Video French Experiment in Integrating Roma Under Threat

Plans to destroy France’s oldest slum have sparked an outcry on the part of its Roma residents. As Lisa Bryant reports from the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, rights groups argue the community is a fledgling experiment on integrating Roma who are often outcasts in many parts of Europe.
Video

Video Kenyans Turn to Agriculture for Business

Each year Kenyan universities continue to churn out graduates for the job market despite the already existing high rate of unemployment among youth in the country. Some of these young men and women have realized that agriculture can be as rewarding as any other business or job, and they are resorting to agribusiness in large numbers as a way of tackling unemployment. Rael Ombuor reports for VOA.
Video

Video First Women Graduate Elite Army Ranger School

Two women are making history for the U.S. Army by proving they are among the toughest of the tough. VOA's Carla Babb reports from Fort Benning, Georgia as 94 men and those two women rise as graduates of the difficult Ranger school.

VOA Blogs

World Currencies

EUR
USD
0.8874
JPY
USD
120.83
GBP
USD
0.6497
CAD
USD
1.3271
INR
USD
66.162

Rates may not be current.