A solid patent portfolio nowadays is a must especially for the technology companies. Not only it can improve the returns on the research and development expenses generating significant income, it can also provide a good defense from the competitors around. Strengthening and optimizing it however, can definitely be challenging. Check out the below tips to learn about some of the strategies that most companies follow in order to succeed in this endeavor:
Analyze the competition – A company should be unique in many ways in order to stand out from others. However, when it comes to managing a patent portfolio, it doesn’t harm to check what others are doing. Research their R&D expenses, products as well as their patent applications and then build and improve based on their models. Capitalize on their mistakes instead of making your own.
File applications early – Remember that the patent is awarded to whoever files it first. Prepare to file application as soon as your invention is conceived. Each moment spent waiting is potentially a risk for you to lose all of the efforts in developing the invention with someone else that might beat you into patenting it.
Determine patent value and learn to let go – Consider the revenue associated with the patent, but also the competitive advantage it gives to you. As soon as you have an idea then it’s time to consider the expenses for each patent and deciding if the costs of maintenance exceed the revenue. For the patents that are costly, you can choose either to sell or license them, otherwise dropping them is still a better decision than continuing losing money.
Acquisitions – The expansion of the patent portfolio can be really cost effective if you consider acquiring patents. There are plenty of companies that in a certain moment suffer financially and are looking to sell or license their patents. The cost in this case is much less than the cost of developing a patent your own.
Licensing – If you see attention from other companies on your patent, then licensing is a safe option. There are many companies with quite small patent portfolios that manage to give licenses from giants such as Apple or Samsung for their mobile devices. Instead of spending more time and resources to explore the full potential of your patent, let others do it for you.
Abroad protection – Use the USPTO application in order to get a broad protection for your patents. Getting protection in the countries that are associated with technological advancements, will increase the value of your patents.