“You can resist an invading army; you cannot resist an idea whose time has come.” – Victor Hugo

4. Generating Ideas

So, now that you’ve decided to get into the entrepreneurship game, how do you come up with that great idea? Well, there is no magic formula when it comes to that but a few things do help. Another suggestion from Robert Kiyosaki is to keep your eyes open and always stay alert for key pieces of information. Carry around a notebook wherever you go in order to jot down ideas on problems to solve or needs to fill.

Push your boundaries by using vision and creativity to see something mundane in a different way. Surround yourself with new and unusual people and places in order to stretch your mind. Pay attention to trends and find opportunities other overlook so you can invest in the future. Use innovation to turn those ideas into something marketable. Carve out an untapped niche that nobody else is serving and design a business that is truly unique.

5. Testing Ideas

A great way to know if the idea has potential is if it makes you and the people you know excited. Is this something that can actually make enough money to be sustained? Is there sufficient demand from people prepared to pay for what you’ll offer? You must get into the mindset of the potential customer. Just because you’d be prepared to pay for vintage comic books or any other exciting new product does not necessarily mean enough other people will do the same.

But what if your idea has already been taken or what you’re offering already exists? This does not mean you should give up. It’s possible for you to survive (without stealing customers or wasting time as you compete) provided what you have to offer meets different people’s needs in a unique way. There must be enough of a potential upside gain to outweigh the more likely downside risks.

Perhaps you could find a way to slightly reduce or completely eliminate aspects consumers don’t want or don’t need in order to lower costs and compete on price. Perhaps you could increase current features or create brand new ones in order to offer something more valuable that people will want and be prepared to pay a little extra for. Customise what you have to offer in order to make it match what consumers want.

6. Milestone Planning

Before blindly rushing out to get your venture off the ground, take some time out to plan. Milestone planning is about identifying all the important sequential “checkpoints” along the way and figuring out the steps that come between them. Having a map to show where you’re going and how to get there prevents finding yourself on unnecessary and often costly detours off track.

Some of the important steps involved include creating a concept, testing the idea, completing a prototype, first round of financing, testing the market, setting up production, identifying consumer response, evaluating competitor reaction, and adjusting price, strategy, or even design to see if it still makes sense to carry on. Whichever steps you choose and however long each one takes will depend on your specific situation. As long as you make sure you are constantly identifying, testing, and re-evaluating your assumptions, the rest is completely up to you.

Author's Bio: 

About Me

I have been an active writer for over a decade and published my first book in August 2007. This marked the start of Varsity Blah, a personal development blog that has now received almost 250,000 hits from over 120 countries worldwide. This article is one of almost 100 posts that were compiled into my upcoming book, which was reviewed on Authonomy.com: “This is some very insightful stuff… The way the book is structured, paired with your capabilities of drawing great narrative, leads this on the right path. This cleanses the mind.”

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Graduating from college with distinctions in financial accounting and classical piano has given me a uniquely creative approach to all I do. As a personal development copywriter, I specialise in creating content on improving health, relationships, finances, and career. This includes writing and editing articles, papers, blog posts, web copy, and much more. My professional background in marketing (as well as my extensive experience as one of the first external bloggers for the World Advertising Research Centre) means I can also provide case studies, company profiles, and whitepapers focused on branding, communications, digital media, and market research.

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