A casting call reject soon to be Homemade Millionaire myself, I finally got a chance to kick back and watch the much anticipated Homemade Millionaire show on TLC. A new series produced and hosted by Kelly Ripa of Milojo Productions, a show dedicated to inspiring Women entrepreneurs and taking them to the next level of marketing on HSN. That is what they say anyway…
If memory serves me correctly (and please, correct me if I’m wrong), I was one of the many thousands of women who painstakingly auditioned for this experience of a lifetime back in June of ’09, so this review comes with deep understanding for the many women inventors out there.
As nervous as I was, I distinctly remember overlooking the casting call requirements as any OCD person like myself who wants to make a good impression would. Unfortunately, those requirements have since ended up in the black hole of internet heaven never to be found again, so it is without proof do I ramble my own personal opinion of what was asked for and later produced.
A reality show dedicated in finding the perfect handful of women inventors and helping them manufacture, market and sell was the biggest draw for many if not all of the women who showed up for this event.
To my surprise out of the hundreds of women that lined the ballroom of one of NYC finest hotels, many of the products were already in place. Here I was with my dinky little prototype of an invention, pieced and sewn together by hand and surrounded by women with patented inventions already manufactured, sold in stores and some even seen on TV!
After my 2 minutes of fame with the producer and actually winning the famous green ticket that puts you in the next round, he asked to see my prototype and continued to say it was exactly the type of invention they were looking for. I said “That’s great, then let me ask you this, I thought this casting call was for newer inventions only. Ya know, people who want to make it in the real world. Women that need help. Why are there women who already “made it” here?” He shrugged his shoulders and said they didn’t want to turn anyone down, so they opened it up to everyone.
Waving my “golden” green ticket in the air after exiting my interview, I was happy to forward to the next round, but couldn’t get over the fact that even though we all need a little extra help in the world, why couldn’t the women who already had functioning, patented and a history of sales for their inventions just give us newby’s some space to expand on our own?
After watching the first episode, it was clear they picked two women with working, manufactured products and one with a simple prototype. I can go on and on about this, but where is the inspiration here? Where in this show did we watch the journey of women take a product from idea to market?
In the end, they picked Marcy with her hairstyling cabby. Great invention, yes, BUT the panel picks her because and I quote: “She’s ready to sell.” Wait. Didn’t you just claim and advertise this was going to be a show geared towards helping women through the process of manufacturing, marketing and selling? You gave Tonya and her hot roller idea (great invention btw) a class on pitch and that’s your way of helping? Shouldn’t the show be advertised simply as a contest of who has the best pitch and be done with it?
Fortunately, through this experience I have met the best inventor rejects in the world and proud to be webbed along with such supporters like Womentorz, a fabulous network of women inventors that is more than a marketing service, but gives true one on one guidance that really does help take you from invention to market.
I still love ya Kel and I still have yet to do anything with my prototype and could use the help, so… if ,ya know, there’s no hard feelings.. my golden ticket was #50. 🙂