Business Idea Protection

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Jun 17, 2007, 3:06:56 PM6/17/07

I just came up with a great pet food name which will be marketed with
a 20 year old wolrld regonized song. Did the registration of the
domain names. I am disabled and do not have lots of money to seek
legal counsel. Can I patent the marketing plan or would it be prudent
to pitch idea to Fortune 500 Co. or broker with a nondisclosure
agreement? This is one that should clear the park wall.

John A. Weeks III

Jun 18, 2007, 11:36:11 AM6/18/07

In article <>,
newrich <> wrote:

You cannot patent an idea or a plan. It has to be a specific
device. You could patent the dog food formula, assuming that
it is different enough from any other dog food that is out
there. You cannot patent a name. You can try to trademark
a name, but not a marketing plan.

You are free to pitch to who ever you want to, but nobody is
going to sign your non-disclosure. The reason is that companies
have ideas all the time. You might have come up with the name
"Happy Puppy" and plan to play the song happy birthday. Well,
the company might have thought of that, too. If they later use
the idea, even though they came up, you are going to think that
they ripped out off and you might sue. The only way for them
to protect their existing ideas is to not sign your non-disclosure.
Better yet, they should never talk to you.

About the only way to get something like this going is to go
get going. Find a private label manufacture, and do a test
run with your packaging. Then visit dog and cat shows, and
start giving out samples. See if you can sell some. Then
start talking with local retailers, and see if you can get
it in the stores. Develop a route. Once you have a base,
you can try to go regional though a grocery or discount chain,
or national through someone like Target or PetsMart. Developing
a base also gets you attention so you can get bought out by
one of the big vendors.


John A. Weeks III 952-432-2708
Newave Communications


Jun 20, 2007, 12:31:48 AM6/20/07

You definitely can't "patent the marketing plan", unless there is
something in it that could qualify for a business method patent. In
addition, trying to patent anything without professional help is
usually a waste of time; unless you prepared patent applications
before, you won't be able to prepare one on your own.

What you may want to do is to register the name you came up with as a
trademark. This is doable without hiring an attorney, can be done
entirely online at, and is not particularly expensive (the
filing fee is two hundred some dollars, if I remember correctly).

Pitching to a Fortune 500 company probably won't get you anywhere.
You may (but not necessarily will) be able to sell them your rights to
the trademark, but don't expect to get a lot of money for it; they
will probably buy it to shelf, just to preclude competitors from
developing it.

Also, right now is about the worst time to come up with marketing
gimmicks in pet food. The recent pet food recall exposed the fact
that most of pet foods in the market are in fact the same product in
different packaging. It wasn't a secret before, but now the public is
more aware of it. So unless you actually have a genuinely different
product, trying to push it will be an uphill battle...



Jul 10, 2007, 11:13:14 PM7/10/07

"newrich" <> wrote in message

Others have commented re. the patent. You may be able to get a trademark or
some such thing. For discussion re. protecting intellectual property and so
forth, I suggest you post the newsgroup

I have never heard of anybody, ever, profit off of an "idea" without doing
the work to put everything into place and bring the idea to fruition.
Nothing personal, but ideas are a dime-a-dozen & everyone has them. You may
have something great in mind that could make a lot of money, but, unless you
do something, yourself, to make it real, you'll never make a cent. Nobody
pays anybody for ideas, ever, unless you're working for a company and you
have others under you that are paid do the actual work. (My opinion.)

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