While working as a chiropractor in Rockville Centre, Dr. John Maurello honed not only a skill, but a product.
became convinced the device he
- a seat designed to help treat hemorrhoids - could help thousands, he
had to jump through hoops before he
could market it.
obtained Food and Drug Administration approval, Maurello
had to figure out a way to sell HemAway
found the Internet provided a perfect opportunity to market his
invention even before retailers agreed to carry the device.
The firm's site, www.HemAway.com
, not only includes videos and testimonials, but offers the promise of a refund if the product doesn't work.
said three out of 300 consumers requested refunds, returning the product unopened, presumably after receiving it as a gift.
Hundreds more bought and kept the product since it launched in March.
And best of all, Maurello
found the Internet was ideal for marketing hisinvention, since customers might like buying it in the privacy of their home rather than in a store.
"You're not running to the doctor with this problem, because it's embarrassing," Maurello, who still owns his Rockville Centre chiropractor practice and is chair of HemAway, said.
While inventing a product is difficult, getting it to market has often been equally daunting.
But inventors such as Maurello
are finding they have a better shot at reaching consumers through the Web.
Although Stracuzza and Maurello
are examples of local inventors selling online, the Internet is full of inventions, including sites showcasing innovative products, Lashar said.
has sold 300 HemAways in his
first few months, in what's becoming a promising beginning.
There was paperwork, export forms, import duties," Maurello
"We locked down the site to sell only in the United States."
Today's more traditional inventors on the Internet may be different from those in the dot-com boom who dreamed of becoming millionaires overnight.
But they share a belief that their product can change the world, one person at a time.
"Once people realize it works, the market is so big, people will have no choice but to buy it," Maurello
said of his