A few years back I tried pitching a lawn game to companies and was unsuccessful. It was the first time I had ever tried to license a game. I made plenty of mistakes and there were many lessons learned.
My second pitch (Maze Racers) was a fun and rewarding ride. I went from pitch to a signed license agreement in less than 3 months, with nothing more than a bunch of emails and 1 phone conversation.
I cast a very wide net and reached out to over 50 companies via email. Nine of them responded asking for more information. That led to three companies asking for a prototype. FoxMind Games enjoyed the game so much they licensed it.
Ideally, if you can get a face to face to meeting to pitch an idea, take it. However, many times that isn’t possible, but don’t let that hold you back. Email is an easy and convenient way to communicate. The most important thing to remember about email is to keep it lean. Your initial email to a prospective company should be as brief and concise as possible. Write your best pitch, and then force yourself to cut it in half. Avoid sending too much information about your idea, and most importantly do not include attachments or pictures. Your goal is to pique someone’s interest, so they request more information. By having them respond to your email, you’ve accomplished two very important things:
When it comes to email content, less is more. If your initial email contains everything there is to know about your idea, and you never get a response, then you are left in the dark. You’ll never know why there was no response. Was it your idea, your pitch, timing, too expensive to manufacture? Your primary goal is to get a response and then get some feedback on your idea. Without any feedback you cannot improve your pitch or the idea itself.
Getting a response also allows you to begin a dialogue with the company and build rapport with the individuals evaluating submissions. Look at every interaction with a company or individual, as an opportunity to grow a relationship and improve your knowledge on the type of products the company is currently looking for.
If a company high on your list does not respond, be politely persistent. Send a follow up email in week and if there is still no response, give them a call. A simple phone call goes a long way even if you end up leaving a voicemail. After I left a voicemail with an unresponsive company they emailed me back and asked for a prototype, explaining they had not yet gotten around to responding to my previous emails. Bottom line, keep knocking on their door until they pass on your idea. Polite persistence will pay off.
To learn more about the Maze Racers licensing journey, visit CerealBoxMaze.com.