In the business voyage that leads to the creation of your company the starting point is to produce ideas or discover business opportunities that allow you to reach the end of such voyage, i.e., the foundation of your company. In this sense, development of your business idea should consider the following:
- The idea must be opportune and pertinent, i.e., you must verify that the current state of markets is suitable for developing your business idea, which basically means that there must be a base of customers demanding the product or service that you want to offer. Furthermore, you must verify that such demand will likely keep for at least a medium term, as achieving success with shortly-lived products and services can be really hard and might require quite a deal of experience (or luck).
- Our product or service must provide an “added value” to potential customers, because otherwise it will be very difficult to displace your competition in the market. Ideally, try to offer something new, in the sense of improving existing products or satisfying customers beyond their expectations. In short, think clearly about the added value of your product or service.
- Your target client base must have a “minimum size”, regardless of how specialized your product or service is. You must take into account that there must always be a minimum number of customers willing to demand your products.
- Creativity is very important. We’ll be using creativity to discern and separate only the best ideas.
- Create a network of relationships. A good network of professionals and entrepreneurs will allow us to eliminate personal subjectivity and be more objective in the analysis and implementation of ideas and business opportunities. Seeing the work and products of the members of your network will improve your processes of organizational analysis.
- Motivation. Motivation is the key for being your own boss. Motivation. It’s necessary to keep an entrepreneurial spirit, no matter the obstacles. We must have a real willingness to take our idea forward, believing in ourselves. Motivation will help solve the various problems that arise during the business voyage.
Once we have carefully meditated about these topics, we can start searching for ideas and business opportunities. The outcome of this search must be a list of ideas stemming from our inspection of several common sources for business ideas:
- Our personal environment. Circumstances surrounding each individual are very diverse and specific, and thereby we should analyze our own experience, knowledge and interests.
- The market. Analyze the market. We must consider that the environment in which we move continually is continuously changing, and we must pay special attention to the behavior of individual consumers and groups of consumers, their desires, tastes, and their unsatisfied needs.
- Other businesses. Analyze existing businesses by attending fairs, participating in seminars, conferences, talking with your contacts in other companies, etc. You might discover some opportunity to improve existing manufacturing processes, distribution, production, promotion, customer service, etc.
- Literature. Reading publications, studies, statistics, ratios, magazines, articles, economic data… these sources might yield valuable information.
- Relational thinking. Association of actors, actions and context, in everyday situations, might produce interesting observations. What products or services not available in my area of residence are often looked for? What is that that I’d like to enjoy right now but it’s too expensive? Are there any products and services currently on the market that could be extended for another function? Do I know about some business initiatives that have failed? What service is missing on the Internet? Think about these and other related questions.
- There are many opportunities in emerging or growing sectors, such as Internet and other unregulated sectors.
Finally, your business voyage must consider the analysis and evaluation of these ideas and business opportunities, especially its technical and economical feasibility. Do you have access to the required technological means and knowledge? Is it a profitable idea? Do we have the required resources for implementing our idea?. If your idea is feasible, the next step will be to create a plan, and this post might be useful in such regard.