This is a guest post by Edward Lakatis
We’re no strangers to inventions that have made money because they have proven to be extremely useful. There are even inventions, like toys, while not the most useful things, have found their own niche, and have also been very marketable. However, what’s downright weird is when strange and seemingly useless inventions actually become hits! Here are a few very fascinating, and amusing examples:
- Head On- Head On is a supposedly a migraine reliever that is said to be very effective on migraines. However, its effectiveness has been questioned time and again because the product is made almost purely out of wax, and doesn’t seem to have any sort of research to back it up. Here’s where things get interesting- despite it being a seemingly hokey product, it managed to sell about 6 million tubes when it first launched. Many credit the sales to the extremely annoying ad of the product that actually went viral.
- Pet Rock- Pet Rock was originally marketed for people who couldn’t keep real pets alive. Nothing more than a plain rock, with a pair of plastic eyes attached to them, Pet Rock surprised everyone when they debuted in 1975 as an invention by Gary Dahl. In the first 6 months alone, the product managed to sell 5 million units. It seems like Americans couldn’t get enough of these pet rocks and couldn’t be bothered to make some themselves.
- The Snuggie- many people say that the snuggie is actually nothing more than a glorified bathrobe that is worn backwards, or with the back part in front. However, this doesn’t seem to have fazed snuggie fans who were responsible for about $200 million in sales. Many credit the snuggie’s success on the ad that the company ran, which was funny and generally seen as ridiculous. To add to that, celebrity buzz about the product got even more people curious, and prompted them to own snuggies of their own.
- The Tamagochi- Who doesn’t remember the Tamagochi- the electronic pet that everyone had to have back in 1996. The Tamagochi’s premise was simple- it’s owners had to keep it alive by giving it constant attention. Tamagochis made an astounding 500 million in sales, and besides the original products, there have been other products that have been developed from it, such as video games and even a cartoon series.
- Silly bands- a recent sensation, silly bands are nothing more than rubber bands that are shaped into animals, letters, numbers and even random objects. For not so obvious reasons, silly bands became extremely popular amongst tween girls. This obsession equated to about a 100 million revenue for the company who made these bands. Today, they’ve even gone as far as tapping celebrities to create special packs of rubber bands with varying themes.
No one can really say if an invention will become a success or not, but if we were to base it on these weird ones, there is definitely room for just about anything and everything out there. Inventors should take this as a hint to develop what they want. After all, that product could become the next big sensation, regardless of how weird it is!
Edward Lakatis run and writes for Idea Design Studio, an invention development and marketing company. He is passionate about all things related to invention, and helping other inventor’s realize their products potentials. More of Edward’s writing can be found on http://ideadesignstudio.com/
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