Have you ever had a big eureka moment where you believed you might have a great idea? After having that moment did you ever consider how you could take that idea and actually make it into a viable business? There are a few things to consider before you truly know if your business is worth jumping into or not.
Solve a Problem:
While the Facebooks and Twitters of the world are amazing products and companies, they are also outliers. It’s much harder to create something that has such massive effect. Can I solve this problem better than anything out there? You should try to solve a specific problem and ask yourself:
- Are people willing to pay for a solution?
- Are there a lot of people with this problem or only a small amount of people?
- Is there a clear cost-effective way to reach those people?
You might think you have a novel idea, but if you don’t do your due diligence, you could find yourself lacking the necessary information to really start your business. Basically, you could be wasting your time. In this day and age time is valuable and could be a weighing factor in the success or failure of your business.
Solve a specific problem (get as focused as possible):
This is one of the easiest mistakes a first time entrepreneur can make. They want to do it all, create more features, offer more services, out due competitors. When you do this, you end up spreading yourself too thin. Put all of your competitors on a page, and if they all don’t directly compete with each other, you aren’t focused enough.
Test your market before jumping in:
Today there is absolutely no reason you can’t figure out if there is a market. Anyone can create a landing page and spend a few hundred dollars on testing before jumping in. For example, pretend you’re selling funny t-shirts. Before you go and buy a bunch of inventory, go see if people will buy them. Create a landing page using a free tool like Strikingly showing the shirts and letting people “buy” a shirt. Use Facebook to target people just from your area/vertical and see how many people click through all the way to the purchase button. While you don’t actually have a shirt to sell them, you can predict how many people would have bought one. If the amount of the purchases is higher than the money you spent on the advertising, you might just have a business.
Put together the right team (you need that technical cofounder):
This might be the most important. Many people come up with an idea but can’t design it or program it themselves. That’s fine, there is plenty of work to be done, but it’s a mistake to think you can simply outsource or hire for that. You’re about to build a company and you need to find all the people you need to make it a reality.
Jason Grill is a graduate of the University of Missouri where he obtained his Juris Doctorate with an advanced degree in Dispute Resolution. He is the owner of JGrill Media, a media relations and public affairs consulting firm, as well as the cofounder of Sock 101, a stylish sock company producing high quality and professional affordable socks for only $7. Jason is also the producer and host of a weekly entrepreneur radio show in the Kansas City area and a contributing writer at the Huffington Post.
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