Friday, March 21, 2008

Where Do Business Ideas Come From & Is Your Idea Viable?

Business Idea

Sometimes we wonder how do people come up with a business idea or an invention.
According to the National Federation of Independent Businesses:

43% is from a Prior Job
18% from Hobby or Personal Interest
10% from Chance Event
8% from Someone who Suggested it
6% from Education/Courses
6% from Family Business
5% from Activities of Friends/Relatives
5% Other

What Can Make Your Business Unique?
  1. Features
  2. Your location
  3. Offer things that cannot be found elsewhere
  4. New invention
  5. Use of materials (Green, Recycled, Made in the USA)
  6. Pricing, guarantees
  7. Customer service policies
  8. Unique packaging
  9. Individual artistry
  10. Add-ons or extra that come with a purchase
  11. Your experience
  12. Delivery policies/Time frames

Who Are Your Customers?

  1. Gender
  2. Age or Age range
  3. Income Level
  4. Education level
  5. Residence location
  6. Employment/Job location
  7. Worker type (professional, hourly, etc
  8. Marital Status (married, single, widowed)
  9. With or without children
  10. Renter or home owner
  11. Lifestyles/interests (sports, arts, pets, etc..)
  12. Level of familiarity with your service
  13. Beliefs/Opinions
  14. Specifics to your business

What Do You Need To Know?

  1. Who?
  2. What?
  3. Where?
  4. When?
  5. Why?
  6. How?

Start The Research Process

Preparation, Preparation, Preparation.

Before you begin your business you need to do research and the more you do, the more you will be prepared to begin the business or to decide that perhaps your idea was not going to be viable. Here is what you need to learn about your business:

  1. Your niche
  2. The need for your product
  3. Customer identification
  4. Competition
  5. Location
  6. Pricing
  7. Costs/financing information
  8. Regulations, licensing, certification

Where to Begin?

There is plenty of FREE information available to you. DO NOT rush into paying someone high fees for something that you can get at no cost. Exhaust all your FREE resources before you decide to hire professional help. I recommend interviewing at least three experts and then making a decision.

Accessing Business Resources

  1. Public Library
  2. Trade Associations
  3. Published Reports and Articles
  4. Studying the Competition
  5. Talking with Customers
  6. Suppliers/Vendors
  7. Local Economic Development or Business Resources
  8. Banks
  9. Internet
  10. Small Business Administration

Here is a tip: Check with your knowledgeable banker. You may ask why? Well, if you want to consult an Attorney or a CPA, they will charge you for their time, however, if you check with your banker, the banker will not charge you for the information provided. The banker will guide you to the FREE resources first and then will recommend you to an expert.

Also check with local librarian... they are a great source of information & FREE of charge.

Is Your Business Idea Viable?

  1. Work in your industry on a part-time basis
  2. Get a business mentor and learn from him or her
  3. Volunteer for a small business owner to learn day to day operations
  4. If you have a product, test it at a trade show, community fair, or block party
  5. Call sales reps that supply your industry
  6. Talk with local Realtors, business owners, bankers, elected officials, etc.
  7. Research the competition - start with the phone book
  8. Contact local economic development and/or government agencies

The above information: was Prepared by NxLevel Guide for Micro-Entrepreneurs. I use the above information in my lectures and I teach through A New America Community Corporation

1 comment:

Patrick said...

Hermes,

Your blog has a lot of outstanding information for aspiring and current entrepreneurs.

Another great source for prospective business owners is SCORE (www.score.org), a nonprofit association dedicated to educating entrepreneurs and the formation, growth and success of small business nationwide. SCORE is a resource partner with the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA).

SCORE is headquartered in Herndon, VA and Washington, DC and has 389 chapters throughout the United States and its territories, with 10,500 volunteers nationwide. Both working and retired executives and business owners donate time and expertise as business counselors. SCORE was founded in 1964.

Keep up the great work on your blog!

Best,
Patrick Galvin
Chief Galvanizer
Galvin Communications
www.galvincomm.com