The Handbook of Building Digital Products
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How to develop a great business idea?

If you have followed introduction chapter of The Ultimate Guide to Business Solutions, and have an idea of what business solutions you want to build, simply follow the methods, ideation tools and tactics described below to make your idea an irresistible one. I suggest you complete all the exercises carefully. It’s you that holds the key to the success of gifting the most valuable product for your business customers.

In this chapter of The Ultimate Guide to Business Solutions, you will be able to:

  • Identify and define your business idea.
  • Discover the real customer segment for your idea and validate it to know exactly what your customer wants.
  • Analyze the competitive landscape to further enhance your value proposition. This will help in supporting your mission and to create an uncontested market opportunity for your offerings.

With the use of the tools and guidelines outlined below, you will be able to filter out the noises and help prepare yourself for building your business model and prototype.

Different ways or methods to get excellent business ideas

A great idea can appear from any source – while watching something interesting or reading a book or scanning through the news. Listed below are a few other methods you can apply to formulate great business ideas:

Be the solution:

Perceive challenges as opportunities. You can come up with a great idea when facing a problem and realize that there isn’t a solution to this problem yet. For example, King C. Gillette was frustrated with sharpening his straight-edge razor. That’s why he came up with the reusable blade. It’s the same reason why service providers, Uber and Ola, rose considerably. Customers were fed up with their local cabs and autorickshaws, refusing to ply to places the customers wanted to go. Improve an existing product/service to solve customer problems more proficiently, thus offering them a better experience.

Useful tip:

Be empathetic. You should put yourself in your customers’ shoes to discover the problem you’re trying to solve better.

Add value:

A successful business is built by giving value to your customers. If you can convince your customer that by paying for your product, they will gain in terms of money, time, authenticity, effort taken, and most importantly, trust, then you have a winner on your hands. There are two ways to understand this concept at a deeper level:

  • Select 3 companies that you admire most. Make a list of qualities you like about those products or services. Why do you like them above others? What are the values they add to your life? How do they simplify and make your life and living easier?
  • Put yourself in your customer’s shoes and ask, “What is the thing that’s missing in my life which, if made available, will add significant value to me now, and in the future?”

Believe in your idea:

Trust your instincts. BELIEVE in your idea. There are countless cases where entrepreneurs have been ridiculed initially for their business ideas, but they never stopped believing in the immense potential hidden in their thoughts. Many of these ridiculed thinkers became the most successful innovators. To cite some examples, King C. Gilette (reusable razor), Steve Jobs (touchscreen), Larry Page & Sergey Brin (Google), and Twitter (engineers thought it was a stupid idea).

The kind of wrath any innovator faces when they come up with a new idea is echoed so well in the
Nicholas Klein, a writer, attorney, and clothing workers lobbyist. In his speech to the Clothing Workers, he said the following:
“First, they ignore you. Then they ridicule you. And then they attack you and want to burn you. And then they build monuments to you.”
And that is what happens to all the people who think beyond the boundaries to make impossible possible.

Useful tip:

Persevere. If you truly believe in your business idea, perseverance could be the key to making it a success. Don’t jump from ideas to ideas unless you have validated the facts and assured about its fitment and feasibility. Sometimes, it is not about coming up with new ideas, but following your goal until it clicks.

Do what you love, love what you do:

We are living in the age of innovation. Anyone (literally anyone) with extraordinary talent and excellent execution skills can make it big. Don’t take your hobbies lightly. Think about leveraging your talents, skills, and passion for converting it into a viable business opportunity. Even if you aren’t the best in that field, what you can do is Know EVERYTHING there’s to know about it. Very soon, your expertise will start to pay you rich dividends.

Useful tip:

Get inspired by the habits of customers, community, social dynamics, and trends. See how your talent and skill can be best leveraged in the current scenario and use it to compliment your business.

Gather knowledge about existing ideas:

Study the brilliant ideas that interest you most or in areas that you are skilled at. Google it! See why those businesses are such massive hits. Know more about those entrepreneurs and companies. Scanning these ideas will give you insights that will be helpful in your idea-building activity.

Useful tip:

Draw inspiration from history, science fiction, and mythology.

Think out of the box:

Now that you know quite a bit about these businesses look if something is missing. Did anyone mention to you why they were angry with a particular brand? Did someone tell you that car service providing companies aren’t that professional and often got late? Was someone not happy with their hotel booking? Is buying houses cumbersome on some of the most successful online property sites? Is there something that can be done better? If you have an answer, there’s your brilliant idea! Or emulate successful business ideas in other markets and territories.

Useful tip:

If your area or city does not have such services, maybe you can be the one to start something on similar lines.

Plugin the gap:

There are people around you who could probably give you some brilliant business ideas for your startup. You will find many meaningful ideas out there that can be tapped into rather than coming up with an original idea. Take Steve Jobs for example. He spotted the genius of Steve Wozniak. That was his winning idea! There could be many people who are good at innovating but don’t know how to take their product forward. If you are a good marketer and love doing that, you could build that business idea with the innovator.

Read customer feedback on the Internet:

One thing that people ignore most is studying customer feedback on existing products or services. Here’s where your untapped potential lies. Go online and read them carefully. Take up the most popular products of today. Pick up what interests you the most and go through the feedback that a particular product has received. List them down. What is the missing link?

Useful tip:

Begin with the end in mind.

Predict the Future:

Today, almost everything is constantly changing. Envision what could be useful two or five years from now. For example, with smartphones making internet access easier, e-commerce has gone through the roof. Soon with bandwidth not being a problem, net users will probably prefer to watch more videos instead of reading to save time. Explore till you find your niche.

Useful tip: Remain curious.

Keep up with Technology:

Today, a lot of offline businesses are now setting up websites and their e-commerce sites to reach out to a wider audience across the world. Setting up these websites and e-commerce sites itself could be a booming business. There might be a vast number of websites and e-commerce platform providers, but is there something you could do differently? If you can provide a key differentiator to what is currently available in the market, you’ve got a winner.
Learn from yours and others’ mistakes: We all make mistakes, but it is those who learn from their mistakes who move ahead in life, and those who learn from others’ mistakes move ahead even faster. You can probably get your business idea from such mistakes! Figure out how to correct these mistakes and come up with your own plan to do things better.

Learn from yours and others’ mistakes:

We all make mistakes, but it is those who learn from their mistakes who move ahead in life, and those who learn from others’ mistakes move ahead even faster. You can probably get your business idea from such mistakes! Figure out how to correct these mistakes and come up with your own plan to do things better.

Learn from the Experts:

Many experts hold seminars and conferences on how to come up with brilliant, winning business ideas and build robust business solutions. Attend these seminars or conferences to expand your knowledge base. It can probably cut down years of your own research.

Where to get interesting business ideas

  • Engaging in provocative questioning is a very effective way to generate good ideas. You can use online forums, social networks, and your connections to ask incisive questions about your idea. You will find it beneficial in two ways – one, you get an inkling of what others think (about the idea), whether they resonate with it or not. Two, you gather varied information on that subject.
  • Brainstorming is an excellent exercise to indulge in. When at work, participate in competitions, hackathons, take up online challenges and attempt to solve those problems. During finding the right solution, you get stuck at some point, and to get out of it, you take aid from your colleagues or friends. Discuss it. Enjoy the process like you do when you’re playing online games. Don’t let the complexities bog you down. Rather, seize these opportunities as they enable you to become a thinking entrepreneur gradually.

Whatever method or process helps you get your idea, use perception building, ideation, and brainstorming to solidify it.Define your idea in a manner that clearly depicts your focus, passion, inclination, dedication, and soul in it. When you share your idea with an investor, employee, advisor, mentor, or customer, they should get curious about it. Use the below format to define your idea:

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Zeroing in on your idea is the most crucial exercise. The biggest and best innovations started with a simple idea.

What’s your Big Idea?

It’s time you let your big idea step out from your subconscious into your conscious mind. If you had to tell the world about your idea right now, how would you narrate it?

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I hope now you have an adequate understanding of what it takes to build a great idea. Follow along the next chapter to filter out the noises and discover your strengths to build your dream business.