There are more than three ways to test your ideas but these three can be a great time saver as well as a good indication that there is a need your idea can meet profitably. (NOTE: Profit = money in your pocket)
In business the number one challenge with any idea is to get the idea to market and once to market, get information to enough people who then are willing to buy the product or service. Money is usually needed to do both so before you put your hand in your pocket or the pocket of investors do some simple testing and see if you have an idea that can earn $$$$s.
Remember: There are millions of GOOD Ideas
but only a few actually ever generate significant money
On Amazon, how many books are published about your idea? Rather than look for what your idea specifically, look for what people have written that solves a similar problem.
Let’s say we have an idea of to keep skin supple. We could then look on Amazon for books on skin care, appearing younger or even looking more beautiful. Skin care gives us 447,958 entries, appearing younger gives us 91 entries, and looking beautiful gives us 57,870 entries. From this we could say that a few others have identified a similar problem and come up with some workable solutions. But we have no idea how big the market is.
On Google or Bing do a similar search. Skin care gives us 165,000,000 items which says a few people look for skin care. We can confirm this number by going to Google keyword research and seeing what the competition is.
Now as you can see, lots of people deal with skin care but appearing younger and looking beautiful are not as popular or searched for quite so often.
If I enter supple skin, we see that the competition for the term is at a
2,400 people search for that monthly.
So what that tells me is that while there may be a need, the chances of making good dollars without investing a lot of time and money is small.
Redefine your need and how you would approach the market
Conduct some surveys. Survey monkey is a great free tool for surveys but for you the challenge will always be to get enough responders. It takes time and money to reach enough people to find out if anyone wants that glorious supple skin that your idea will produce.
So other surveys you can do include Facebook Questions. Questions on other social media sites. You could create some conversations around the idea with people on Google+ and in forums. But find out the language people are using and how they see this problem.
This is a key test because it actually engages your audience and helps you develop a Minimum Viable Product (MVP).
WARNING: While you can ask family and friends, they will either pan the idea to prevent you losing out or out of jealousy or they will love your idea because they want to be supportive. Either way, their opinion is colored so treat the information carefully.
Unless you are prepared to test your idea, you could have loads of great product going off in your garage or basement.
I will never forget throwing out $500,000 of women’s vitamins because the company I worked with did not test their idea before they went to market.
ARROGANCE brings many a producer and marketer to their knees.
TEST and test again
To your success in taking ideas to $$$$s
Why does community matter to businesses success?
There are several reasons but the biggest one relates to trust. We trust experts. We trust friends. We trust those who are in our circles of influence. And our circles are communities.
Have you observed that communities who experience a common event – an earthquake, a riot, a parade or a festival, react in a similar way for a time. The event brings people together in either joy or misery. While most events are only for a short time, a community attitude grows over time.
There are many studies that look at how a community attitude affects a workplace and success and how the way we perceive community affects our business
The other day I was working with a unique business whose owners were very tired. Their business was flagging and systems and processes that they once had in place were no longer being used. One of the two owners was concerned that they would miss out on opportunities if they made a statement about who they were. Now in the same community, another business owner was thriving because their attitude was to lead the pack and create something different.
How to use Community for your business
Every marketing book says find a need but if you only look at the individual you miss the real need – the community need. NLP teaches about our need for connection and separation but my perceptions says that separation is only comfortable if first you are connected. When you belong to a community, you can then afford to be different.
To succeed in business find the community need and then you can find the personal need.
For example, in education, the community needs certain skills – doctors, lawyers, social workers, political scientists, engineers, scientists, poets, IT specialists, refuse collectors etc. But on an individual level, the schools appeal to the nature of a person to study a certain set of subjects.
In health care, the community needs healthy people – accident free, disease free and mentally alert and yet everything the conventional and alternate medical fields deal with is problems, dis-ease, disaster, cancers and other growths that consume communities of people. Allergies, autism, depression, stress are identified every day by professionals and patients and the need that each “medical professional” attempts to meet is to cure or circumvent the “problem”.
The experts talk about building lists and affiliates to help you spread the word through their community. But the other day a colleague told me that engaged community was the secret to his success. And engaged communities mean people interacting with each other and the practitioner or business owner.
It means that collaboration and co-operation are becoming more essential for business survival.
We all know the saying - birds of a feather flock together but have you thought about who you have in your community?
And what are the community needs where your business is operating?
Are you trying to meet individual needs or the community needs?
Are you hanging out in a community of your peers or the community of your prospects?
Sometimes your peers will become clients but often your peers will see you as competition first and then only later as the source of assistance.
One last word on Community (for today)
Let me know in the comments about the communities you belong to and please share this blog with your community and see what they think.
Thanks for communing
Are we drowning in a sea of apathy and if we are how do we get out of it?
Apathy displays itself as not giving a damn. It displays itself as indifference, hopelessness and why should I bother. Apathy is the result of feeling helpless and powerless. We are drowning in a sea of apathy in our businesses, governance, education and daily life.
The ways that apathy shows itself include
- Lack of respect for each other and their property
- Increase suicide and depression
- Reality shows that show obnoxious behavior, abuse and bullying
- No service, caring or interest in the workplace
- Bullying both in person and cyber bullying
- Voting for the least offensive candidate because there is no one running who could do a good job
- Criticizing those who try to get the job done
- Ignoring the wrongs around you because you are afraid of being targeted or abused
Is there a solution to the apathy that is overwhelming the world and business?
Probably! But to solve this will require you to take a risk and commit to living today as if it was your last day on earth.
It takes doing your best every moment of every day with whatever tools you have available regardless of what the challenge is.
It takes keeping your word and respecting both yourself and the person you committed to.
It takes a thick skin when people unknowingly or knowingly insult you. Remember most people are self-centered and only see things from their point of view.
It takes stopping jumping to conclusions about what people will say or do in the circumstances.
It takes never regretting your choices but accepting that did your best, kept your word and lived for today.
It takes living the 5 Agreements
Everyone Needs AAA but sometimes it takes a 2 by 4 to get out of the apathy
The three As are Acknowledgement, Acceptance and Appreciation and every human being needs these things every day. When used in your daily life and in business then we have the opportunity for 3 more As – Action, Achievement, Accomplishment.
Today will you be apathetic or will you fight apathy and acknowledge someone who is different, accept them as being perfectly them and appreciate the differences between you and them and the fact that you are both here on earth for a purpose?
In the comments share how today, you intend to fight your apathy. What will you do today to be the difference you want to see in the world?
To your success
are thousands of new articles to read and listen to published every hour of the day.
And as a business owner, you need to decide what to do with this information.
Understand the Danger of the Closed Mind
Think of the big book stores. They believed that people would always buy books and despite seeing the rise of Amazon and Ebooks, they believed that people would always like to browse book shelves and leaf through books. And some people still do but….the majority of people now access their reading materials on-line.
The big book chains have closed
Or think of Kodak. A company with a history of supporting the film industry and photos. Their business was built for the non-digital picture world and even with several incredible digital cameras, they still struggled to survive.
Kodak is gone after 125 years
Do you remember sitting down to your morning newspaper and drinking your coffee while you leafed through the pages to find out what was happening in the world or to your favourite sports team. Are you still doing so? Or do you now read the news online while you sip your coffee. Is your favourite newspaper still in print?
Many newspapers and magazines have closed their doors or sold out to others
As a business person, you need to keep informed.
- You need to find the trends.
- You need to see where the new niches are.
You need information to make decisions but the key is to make decisions.
Refusing to make a decision and act on information can be costly. Making the wrong decision can be costly.
Oh dear, what are you to do?
As with anything in life, only hindsight gives you close to perfect vision but there are no crystal balls. When you make a decision, you change your future.
When you refuse to make a decision you change your future.
You can only do your best. You can only keep your word. And whatever happens, you can only deal with what happens.
Today, make a decision. Check your information first but reduce your overwhelm by limiting you research time. And what you commit to, commit with your whole heart. Commit and never regret but measure and tweak and stay informed.
You need to stay in control. And control requires information. Make a choice – read, listen and keep control on your time, money and course of action.
What are you reading and listening to today?
What are you controlling today?
Let me know in the comments box below.
To your success
In business and life we want things to be FAIR. Many contracts are based on the fairness of both parties but in actual
fact they are anything but fair. One side seems to hold the “power”.
When we buy something and we want to be treated fairly. We deal with a service person and we want their service to match their promise. In many countries there are laws around the fair treatment, keeping promises on quality and quantity.
But think of it, when you are presenting yourself to a prospect or in writing are you going to tell that person your faults and your weaknesses?
Or are you going to represent yourself in the best possible light?
Advertising tells you only the positive aspects of a product or service. Why would anyone promote the negative aspects of their product except maybe a mortician who says “you only have to die” to experience the empathy of our service”.
You believe that people will be fair to you depending on how much you trust them.
We have to start off by understanding that fairness relates to dignity and rights. Fairness occurs when both sides are respected and their rights preserved.
And that is PERSONAL and also assumes that one party knows how the other person views their rights.
And that is where the challenge comes for each business owner.
There are 3 simple ways to deal with any sense of ”unfairness”
- Realize that nothing is fair, it is a subjective decision and feeling. Life is unfair to everyone because it is perception.
- Realize that fairness is personal and therefore only you know what is fair for you.
- Realize that unless you ask the other party specifically, you are only assuming that the other person thinks something is fair.
Over and over again, people judge others by their own values. They deliver the level of service they think they can get away with.
And often that level of service may be less than what they would accept for themselves in a similar situation.
If you want to be fair, then find out how others want to be treated and what they think is fair. A BIG challenge as it does vary from one person to the next.
Another alternative is to to your best and know that no matter how good you are, you will never please all of the people all of the time.
In business as in life, you can only ever do your best and keep your word. You can accept responsibility for your actions but how the other party feels about your treatment is beyond your control.
Is that fair? Is that good? Is that right? Please tell me what you think in the comment box below.
Passionate, Purposeful Presenter