So it’s hit you; that one idea that could change everything and finally turn you into that successful entrepreneur that you’ve always wanted to be. But the problem you’re facing is this; how do you get this idea out of your head and turn it into a viable business? Well that is something thousands of people go through every day. With employees now not feeling as safe as they did before in their jobs; many people decide to go it alone on a daily basis but the problem is where do you start?
Your next steps will ultimately decide whether you have indeed established a genius business idea or if it is just another fleeting spark of creativity that fizzles out. Here are five great steps to take in turning your idea into a profitable business.
Get A Second Opinion (And a Third, Fourth and Fifth) –
At the moment your idea is like your child. You have conceived it and you love it to pieces and if anyone dares to tell you it looks a bit weird then you may very well throttle them. But you need to gauge exactly how viable the idea is by asking the people that are likely to have a need for it. You can start by asking the people closest to you whether they think it could work but ultimately you need to approach your target audience and get a real world opinion.
Focus On What’s In It For Them –
If you have a fully formed idea then the chances are you will know exactly what solution it brings to the market, but the people investing in and buying your idea will not look at it this way. Instead, they will want to know what problem it solves for them. As soon as you stop thinking of solutions and focus on the problems that your business idea will solve you can start to tap into the mindset of your target market.
Don’t Go It Alone –
Although part of starting a business is essentially ‘going it alone’ you will notice that very few successful business have one sole founder. Support from someone you know well or someone who is good at the things you are not is great in this situation because there are sure to be tough times ahead and someone to lean on will be priceless. As well as physical support you will also need to work out where your financial support is going to come from. Whether you apply for a start-up loan, use your savings or get an investor on board; it needs to be mapped out before you continue.
Take That First Step –
Once you are sure your idea can work, you have physical and financial support and you know your product or service from a consumer angle it is time to take that first step and put it into action. If your idea is for a product then you should build a minimalist version of what you have in mind. That’s not to say that it is basic or unsellable; just something that leaves room for progression but that displays the fundamentals behind your idea.
If you are planning to provide a service then create a standard service that will appeal to most people without all the possible add-ons and extras that will come at a later date. By doing this you can build up some steam, create awareness as quick as possible and then hopefully upgrade your idea on the back of that.
Take The Rise With The Fall –
This is perhaps the most important step on the list as it doesn’t matter how much capital you have, how good your idea is or how much support you have from your business partner; if you aren’t willing to persevere through the tough early stages then it is pointless. Starting a business was never going to be easy but that’s not why you are doing it. You are doing it because you believe in that little brain spark that created the initial idea and you aren’t going to give up until everyone else does too. Learn to appreciate the downs as they will make the ups so much sweeter when they eventually arrive.
By Chris Mayhew