Rahul Varshneya| Entrepreneur
Everyone has ideas. I get ideas by the dozen. When I’m brushing my teeth, when I’m driving to work, when I’m at my desk reading an article. But that does not mean that all can be converted into million-dollar businesses. Not that these cannot be converted into million-dollar businesses, but I may simply not be driven enough to see those particular ideas through to that milestone. You may get many ideas, too. But if you don’t, don’t despair. You don’t need ideas to start a business. Regardless, your business ideas are worthless. Let me explain why.
Ideas are just ideas. An idea is the seed of a successful product or service. Without proper care and maintenance, it will not bloom. Ideas require solid research of the target market, a good strategy and a sound , without which, ideas cannot go much further.
If you want to start a business and make a go of it, you need more than just an idea. To begin turning startup dream into a million-dollar business, consider the following advice.
1. Settle on one business idea.
If you’re mulling a number of ideas, odds are good that none of them will see the light of the day. Why do I say that? Because your approach is all wrong. Skimming through different ideas every day and figuring out whether they motivate you or whether they work won’t get you anywhere.
The amount of time you’re spending on them will likely be insufficient. An you’re probably not passionate about any of them. So how do you fix it? Take one idea that moves you, that you feel most passionate about and stay with it. Stay with one till you can’t go any further. Until you’ve given it your all.
Only then will you know whether or not that business idea is worth a million dollars.
2. Validate your idea.
Your idea is absolutely worthless if you keep it to yourself and do not test it with actual customers.
Writing a business plan with projections through market research is a sure-shot way to a startup doomsday. Nothing beats an actual customer using your product or service.
So how do you get to customers when you’re at the idea stage and don’t want to spend a huge sum building something they don’t want?
Build a minimum viable product or a prototype. The idea is to put out something that offers the main value of your startup or that solves the core problem of your customers.
The prototype could be a PowerPoint slide, a dialogue box or just a landing page. This is something that you can often build it in a day or a week. A prototype can be an actual functioning product with the core features offered.
Share this with your network and see the response. Are people excited to use it? Do they feel their needs or problems are resolved by using your product? Is it easy to use?