For Subscribers

My Buddy and Me

Got an idea for a cool promotional product? Read how this entrepreneur turned her simple idea into a successful business.

By Don Debelak

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Inspiration can strike at the oddest times. For 35-year-oldCindy Jones of Oklahoma City, it happened on Halloween back in1996, when her husband came home with a Mr. Potato Head on his carantenna. Jones thought it was cute, so she took the idea one stepfurther: She cut up a plastic pumpkin, put it over her antenna,played with the wiring, and voila, she had a lighted pumpkinon her car. "People were coming up to me, wanting to knowwhere I bought it," Jones recalls.

Since then, Jones has had her product, dubbed AntennaBuddies-currently available as an eight ball, a pair of dice,a banana man and a happy face-featured for two years onMTV's Road Rules, has signed a licensing agreement witha major neon light manufacturer, and has received orders from theJ.C. Whitney catalog and auto electronic stores. What'spropelled her success? For starters, Jones worked through amanufacturer to introduce her product since she lacked the funds tointroduce it herself. More important, though, she's got theperfect promotional product-one that's proved capable oflanding accounts with major companies.

Continue reading this article — and all of our other premium content with Entrepreneur+

For just $5, you can get unlimited access to all Entrepreneur’s premium content. You’ll find:

  • Digestible insight on how to be a better entrepreneur and leader
  • Lessons for starting and growing a business from our expert network of CEOs and founders
  • Meaningful content to help you make sharper decisions
  • Business and life hacks to help you stay ahead of the curve

Editor's Pick

Have More Responsibilities at Work, But No Pay Bump? Use This Script to Get the Raise You Deserve.
Black and Asian Founders Face Opposition at All Levels — Here's Why That Has to Change
Business News

This OnlyFans Star Was Once Part of a Fanatical MLM Cult. "I Was Forced Into Celibacy."

Cami Strella was lured into a multilevel marketing scheme but escaped to start her own six-figure-a-month business.


Invest in Yourself: 10 Things Every Working Woman Should Do This Year

When striving for success, it is easy to forget about your mental and physical health. But without health, you cannot fully succeed. Follow these ten lifestyle strategies for success in your personal and professional life.


5 Reasons Why Your Brand Needs a Strong Social Media Presence

Social media has replaced traditional media, so it's time to funnel your marketing budget into a better, more reliable strategy


Get Two Wireless Chargers for Just $19.99

Create an efficient workplace by clearing the clutter in your office.