I hear from people often who want to go into business for themselves. Sometimes, they are launching a startup around software. Other times, they seek to consult. Many times, I am asked how someone makes money “doing” social media. If you want, I’ll share a simple way to evaluate your ideas from a business perspective. Believe me, it can be much more complex, but here’s some simple ways to think about it.
Note: from a business perspective. Altruists can think differently.
Evaluating Your Business Ideas
- Does it help someone else?
- Can that someone else pay for it?
- If not, who will pay for it?
- If the answer to 2 and 3 are “no” and “no idea,”, here’s a hint: wrong answer.
- Can you do it? Meaning, do you have the capacity to do what it is you’re proposing to do?
- Do you know how to promote it?
- Can you sustain it?
- Can you grow it?
Let’s stop there. There are so many more things we can talk about, but look at those for a moment. When we think about businesses we want to start, we often come in from this really tiny viewing window. We think, “I know how to do this part here,” and often don’t extrapolate out whether there’s a market for what we’re building, or whether we can sell it, and all the other things that come with starting something.
I find that I ask people those types of questions every time they share their business idea with me. For instance, if I’m listening to the ideas of people making media, I ask, “do you know who your audience is? Does that audience appeal to a particular kind of sponsor?”
The world has reached a new and unprecedented opportunity for amateurs to succeed. Gatejumpers abound in this new society. But there are still some core elements that must be in place before you can take that wild leap into your next big plan.
What’s your take on all this? How do you business ideas stack up to the questions I ask above? Any that I missed when I wrote this?
Photo credit kekremsi