Your Idea Sucks!

your idea sucks

Do you have a business idea that you want to pursue? If so, you are probably wondering if it is going to work and if it is going to make you a ton of money, right?

Do you think you have a great business idea? Download this cheat sheet to learn how to deal with your business ideas.

I am sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but the chances are, neither I nor anyone else is going to know whether your business idea is going to work or not. So instead of asking people what they think about your idea, here is what you need to do:

Start the business

If you are really passionate about your idea, you need to go with your gut and start it. Now, this doesn’t mean you’ll necessarily succeed, but you’ll never know if you don’t try it out.

If you just keep on asking people if they like your idea, you are going to get mixed results. Most people won’t know the industry you are trying to get into, so they won’t know if your idea is good or not. And even if they are in that industry, they could be wrong.

By no means am I saying that you shouldn’t ask people for advice, but take it as a grain of salt. Sometimes you just have to do what you want to do.

Save your money

When you are starting your business money will be tight, so you shouldn’t get fancy when it comes to laying the basic groundwork. For example, there is no need to hire a high priced attorney to incorporate your business when you could just go to Legal Zoom and spend $149.

Once you start making money you can go back and pay a good law firm to work on your incorporation. The point I am trying to make is that there is no need to spend thousands of dollars on things that won’t help your business make money… especially when you first get started.

You should reserve all of your cash for things like infrastructure, supplies, employees, and potentially marketing if you have enough cash. And most importantly, always keep a good portion of your cash on reserve for the unexpected.

Prove me wrong

I said your idea sucks, right? Well now that you have started your business you need to prove me wrong. And the only way you can prove me or anyone else wrong is by making money.

This doesn’t mean you have to be profitable, but instead you have to have meaningful revenue numbers. For example, if your company brings in $1,000 a month, that could be meaningful revenue number as long as your monthly expenses aren’t exceeding $5,000 month. On the other hand if your company brings in $3,000 a month and your monthly expenses are $30,000, that isn’t a meaningful revenue number.

If you are having trouble getting to revenue, I don’t know what to say other than to try harder. I wish I could tell you the secret sauce that will cause your business to boom, but I don’t know it. The secret sauce is different for every business.

The best advice I can give you is to look at your competitors and see what they are doing. This should give you a good understanding of what you need to do to make money. Just don’t copy everything your competitors are doing because what works for them may not work for you.

Don’t get ahead of yourself

Hopefully your business idea is working out and making money, but if it isn’t, don’t stress out. Pick yourself up and keep trying other ideas until something works.

If you are making money, pat yourself on the back because you’re half the way from not having a shitty business idea.

You now need to get to profitability. The two main ways you can do this is by either cutting your costs down (which could be a bad idea) or by figuring out creative ways to make more money.

I typically favor the second option and spend time on sales, marketing, and business development deals to get my companies to profitability.

Whatever route you decide to take, the best advice I can give you is to stop dreaming. What I mean by this is that you’ll tend to spend a lot of your day imagining what will happen if you get more sales, did more marketing, or even locked in a business development deal. You may even dream about what you’ll do with the money you’ll make.

Dreaming is a waste of time and all it will do is cause you not to reach your goals. If you really want to achieve your goals you have to act on things and work hard. And once you get to a point where your business is flourishing you still can’t dream because everything isn’t in your control. Things like lawsuits and recessions can crush your business and cause you to go broke.

Conclusion

I know this blog post is a bit basic compared to most of my blog posts, but I really want to get you to stop asking people for input on a business idea you may have. Sometimes the strangest ideas, like Senior Health Insurance or Veteran Loans, could make the most money. So just because someone was successful in the past or went to a good college, it doesn’t mean that they’ll know a good business idea if it stares them in their face.

For example if you asked me what I thought about Facebook, Twitter, or even Hulu when they first came out, I would have told you that they would fail. But I was wrong and I probably will be wrong when it comes to predicting thousands of other business ideas.

Remember, just because someone is in the industry you are trying to enter, it doesn’t mean they’ll know what’s best for you!

P.S. If your idea did work out and you need help growing your business click here.

Comments

  1. Great tips Neil. I screwed up on the corp creation and hired an attorney (who required a retainer). Far more costly than the route suggested here and a lesson learned.

    • Yeah I totally understand what you mean. Many many people make that mistake. Well, at least you learned from it 😉

  2. Great Advice! Especially about the legalzoom part. My partners and I are contemplating spending thousands of dollars to get an attorney to set up everything for us when we’re pretty much already running the business. But one question for you: If we need to protect intellectual property, how risky is it to jump out there with our content before registering the proper copyrights and trademarks?

    • It depends daycom on what your content is. If it’s your basic blogs and articles, it really doesn’t matter. If it’s a unique system or product etc, then it’s something that you should definitely take into consideration.

      • Prostate Problems :

        Articles and news items, that are old, outdated and everywhere else, will do little in your efforts to bring people to your blog. This is one of the most common reasons why people fail online.

  3. Eating Disorder Treatment :

    I think you are right Neil. So many people just daydream about taking action. It seems to me, that every success story I’ve seen and read about comes down to one thing, persistance. They just kept going until it worked for them. That inspires me to take action as well, be it something big or small, just keep builidng upon what you already have.

    • It’s because it all comes down to taking action. If you can the action to make it happen, you’ll be in a position where 90% people aren’t in.

      • That is great I love that.

        “If you can the action to make it happen, you’ll be in a position where 90% people aren’t in.”

        They say 95% percent fail and that is because people dont do anything. All they do is buy into some program and just assume cash will start rolling in.

        • Too many people think that they “attract” all the success that they need… unfortunately it requires something called hard work and passion. Which most people end up forgetting.

  4. I think the biggest thing that people underestimate is how costly the business will be vs how long it will take the business to become profitable. I speak with people on a weekly basis that are in over their heads in debt because their business did not turn a profit as quickly as they thought it would. So as a rule of thumb, double whatever you figured you will need in savings until your business is profitable and you will have a better shot at being right. Worse case scenario you will have money left in savings when your business decides to start supporting itself.

    • Yes, that’s a great rule of thumb to consider. You should always save a few months worth before starting any venture.

  5. Franklin Philips :

    Neil,

    I love regarding your blog dude. Your point about “not getting ahead of yourself” is very important. Many entrepreneurs think they have the right to start acting like “ballers” the moment they start making a few bucks from their business. It’s a really sad mistake that most business owners make when they first start. I must confess I made the similar mistake when I first started too. I also agree that you can’t cut your costs down SO much that you completely “save” your business into bankruptcy! It is essential to try to be creative. I still remember when I decided to put up a banner at Samosa Cabana, my Indian Fusion restaurant, that read “Chicken Biryani Wraps, 100% OFF, That’s Right…FREE”. We served over 1000 people in our 600 sq ft restaurant that day. We also put a banner on our site http://www.samosacabana.com about it. The free food campaign was madness!! We probably spent close to $500 on food costs, but that allowed us to attain some life long customers. When we first started our restaurant though, I still remember wasting $2K to put an ad on the Daily News, that got us 0 customers. It’s all about trial and error. However, with a little creativity, you can double, hell even TRIPLE your sales.

    Anyway man, keep writing awesome posts. I read them all the time! I’m actually a young entrepreneur myself (I own Samosa Group, which consists of Samosa Cabana an Indian fast casual restaurant, and Samosa Digital, an online advertising company.) I just recently started writing a blog, and I’m always interested in reading other young entrepreneur blogs. If you’re ever in the NYC area, stop by for some food on me!

    Cheers.

    -Frank

    • That’s awesome Frank. I will definitely keep you in mind when I go out to NYC 😉

      • Prostate Problems :

        In most cases, people are reactive to their environment. Being reactive, however, is not the way to get ahead in life. If you want to get ahead, stay ahead and make the most out of your personal development endeavours, you need to be PROACTIVE

        • It’s like the passage from the book 7 habits of highly successful people…unsuccessful people are reactive, while successful people are proactive. Instead of getting down and depressed with bad weather, choose your mindset.

  6. Great article. Whilst you do state some obvious points it’s still a bit of an inspiring article, I have done some research after reading this and I’m thinking about setting up an advertising company in my home town. I have the know-how and confidence that I can do better than the current one in my town.

    • That’s great Luke. Just be sure to create a plan of attack on how you’ll be able to market your business and capitalize.

  7. Chris Guthrie :

    You can also just do it yourself. I personally opted for an LLC and spent some time figuring out how to do it in Washington:

    http://www.chrisguthrie.net/filed-for-an-llc-this-morning/

    Did this several years ago though so it may be more or less expensive now and certainly different on a state by state basis.

  8. haha…funny you just write about it… I have just started doing research about my idea and asking around people’s opinions on it. The results are not encouraging (one guy who knows the industry says it is saturated already and a lot of people are trying to win there). But I still find it attractive, I still love the fact that this could be the business that makes me money, allows me to work for myself, gives a good challenge and makes a difference in people’s lives… The vision of this is just very sweet and hard to pass up..

    Thank you,

    Adrian

    • I agree with you Adrian, sometimes great stuff like that is very hard to pass up. I look forward to hearing about your success.

  9. I think this is some great advice but I want to caution commenters who think Legal Zoom is the answer. I think it is a great option if you are by yourself, but I think paying a lawyer to set up a partnership is worth it. Businesses with multiple members need a strong foundation.

    Who’s responsible for what? What happens if the business succeeds but the relationship doesn’t?

    • It depends Mark on what the project is. If it’s a simple setup, a lawyer isn’t necessary. Of course when you actually have money to invest, I totally recommend it.

  10. Philippine Stock Exchange :

    “start the business”. this is one of the many reasons why people never really get ahead with their lives. they get stuck at trying to find out from their friends whether their idea will work or not. if they ask the “wrong” kinds of friends, chances are they will get discouraged to start the business.

    good tip neil! thanks!

    • A lot of people are going to tell you “the idea sucks”etc. However, if you believe in it, give it a shot, else you’ll regret that you never did.

  11. Love it neil..good solid advice!..

    ps you thought Hulu would fail??…thats like saying free music online would fail..haha..j/k

    • Hey you never know right? Sometimes the dumbest ideas are the ones that succeed.

      • You guys need to wait until Spotify hits the US.. That’s when everything will be crazy. Besides, it really sucks to use hulu / vevo.com because whenever you send the embed to any IP outside the states – they get a nice, fat message that says “You suck move to america”

  12. great title. Dreaming is def overrated.

  13. Anand Srinivasan :

    Great advice..And I think you can still be right about Twitter..This is a case worse than your $3000 vs. $30K example..Just that Twitter is still climbing the ladder to do the great bungee of death..

    • It is still climbing the ladder because it’s still very young. The amount of damage you can do with that platform is still vast.

  14. I totally agree with you Neil about ‘just because someone is in the industry you are trying to enter, it doesn’t mean they’ll know what’s best for you!’

    thank o

    • Right, so that’s why you should be careful with who you ask. Negative criticism won’t help, in fact it will do the opposite.

  15. wow!!!!

    I had a great idea that i shared with someone a few years ago and she trademarked it for herself!
    This morning I had a great idea based on the original but better! I was going to ask someone for their opinion, but this post was the first thing i read when i turned on my computer this morning. I’m taking your advice and going to have to think a better route for this idea. Before someone else takes it.

    thanks

    • You should ask the right people if you seek advice because someone can potentially take them. Or just be very clever about how you ask.

  16. scott edward walker :

    Solid post, Neil, as always; I’m a big fan of yours. As a corporate lawyer for 15+ years, I just wanted to make one quick comment (which I know is a bit self-serving): be careful using websites like legalzoom. Indeed, I get so many calls from entrepreneurs who have screwed-up trying to play lawyer and end-up spending more money on lawyers fixing the problems. As I noted in tip #10 in my recent post on launching a venture (see http://bit.ly/FoWlH): “starting companies is a lot like launching rockets: if you’re a tenth of a degree off at launch, you may be a thousand miles off downrange” (quoting Craig Johnson, an extraordinary Silicon Valley lawyer who recently passed away). Many thanks – and keep up the great work. Scott

    • I know what you mean Scott, and lawyers are what most people need, but realistically can’t afford. Legal zoom is a great way to start if you’re fresh.

  17. Another good post. Day dreaming is definitely a waste of valuable resources. Instead of dreaming, get moving, and never, I mean never, waste money on legal mumbo jumbo to begin with.

    If you are forming a partnership with a group of people and cannot articulate the legal framework on a 3X5 card, you should not start the business with them anyway.

  18. Another really great post and comments. I like the comments by Frank Philips and his thoughts on business. I checked out his site and love the social media he’s using I also liked the quote by Scott Walker. I think it also goes to the fact that you don’t want to be retired and asking what if? The question to ask is why not me and start. Starting a business is like having kids. If you are waiting fort the right time you will never have kids. Better to have tried and failed than to never try at all. Thanks

  19. Glenn Matthews :

    Great post, particularly on saving money. In start-ups I’ve always prepared my own shareholders agreement and have self-modified the company by-laws. You can easily find example shareholders agreements and company by-laws. Provided you understand the terms of each contract you are better off than the majority of companies out there that don’t modify the stock company by-laws and never implement shareholders agreements.

    For on of my early investments, we engaged a lawyer to prepare a shareholders agreement between the founders and an an investor. $10,000 later we had a document that both parties still weren’t happy with. That $10,000 could have been better spent on developing the product.

    • Wow, that is definitely a lot of money. You know what, stuff like that happens all the time when you have little to no experience under your belt.

  20. Awesome post.. totally agree that relying too much on people’s opinion is a bad idea.. also legal zoom is cool.. didnt know about it.. thanks.

    • You need to ask the right people, otherwise you’ll get the wrong feedback. People you trust and care about… these people should be people from a mastermind group you’re in.

  21. Magic Of Making Up Review :

    Recipe for success:
    1,Know what you want.
    2,Take action towards what you want….how? Decide.
    3, Notice whether you actions are getting you closer or farther away from what you want.
    4. Model your actions after someone who already has what you want.

  22. Great post.

    Is that poster FTC compliant?
    The subhead should read “results not typical, average snowman survives 2-3 weeks.”

  23. Eric Itzkowitz :

    @neil Good to meet you at Think Tank. I like this article because it really resonates with me. Every time I’ve had a good idea in the past, my first instinct had been to go and bounce it off others, which lead exactly to the mixed feedback you mentioned. Generally speaking, the feedback didn’t do me any justice with regard to actually going forth with the idea or not. Thanks for the advice!

    • Create a mastermind group with people you can trust to share ideas with. That way you’ll get the positive reinforcement you need.

      • Prostate Problems :

        Napoleon Hill states in his Think and Grow Rich, “When a group of individual brains are coordinated and function in harmony, the increased energy created through that alliance becomes available to every individual brain in the group.”

  24. Neil: I love your direct, simple, no-BS style of communication.

    Question for you: What kind of cell phone do you use (if you do at all)? Is it a fancy thing like the iPhone, or something simple like Jitterbug? I’m questioning everything I spend money on after reading your post on frugality.

    Thanks.

    • Jitterbug… lol I have a blackberry. I get many emails a day and need to be on top of replying back to everyone.

  25. Thanks much! Amazed at how quickly and consistently you reply to everyone’s comments. Awesome.

    • Thanks Spender. If people take the time to leave comments to me, I make sure I respond to them as quickly as possible.

  26. marcus@how to make money online :

    Excellent tips. With the internet expanding the ability to get resources cheap or many times free. Starting a business is not as risky as it was 10 years ago.

  27. Baby Front Carriers :

    Is it free to get a blog like this one? Where do I sign up?

  28. Mark Yarrobino :

    Great job, Neil. I like that you always take the “get to work and stop whining like a little bitch” (I’m paraphrasing) point of view.

    Getting things done requires actually getting things done, which means taking some risks and making a ton of mistakes. And then learning from those mistakes. It’s the only way to be successful.

    Thanks for posting.

  29. Infant Crib Shoes :

    I signed up for the RSS feed but I guess it is not working?

  30. Nursing Privacy Cover :

    Does every post get this many comments?

  31. So as a rule of thumb, double whatever you figured you will need in savings until your business is profitable and you will have a better shot at being right. Worse case scenario you will have money left in savings when your business decides to start supporting itself.

    • It’s probably a good idea to have a few months of reserves, just in case you reach that low that most business owners reach during their journey to the top.

  32. I always notice that most people are all talk no action. Its very annoying to find the right people to team up with. Also, everyone is stuck on version infinity for their idea, something that would cost thousands and thousands to create. Instead of just focusing on the core idea and starting with that and growing latteraly.
    I have 3 projects im working on, the blog that is hyperlinked to, my search engine marketing co, and an aftermarket e-commerce site. My SEM co is successful and is how i make my living, my other two ideas…who knows! Just put it out their, punch away at it and see how it goes. Never know unless you try, and by try i mean actually have something to offer not just a “wouldent it be cool if….” conversation

  33. Prostate Problems :

    Whether you realize it or not you have a mindset when it comes to business, money or success of any kind. Your current mindset needs to be change to a success mindset if expect to any real success. Your current mindset with regards to success is been created by your experiences, surroundings, attitudes and the people or parents that raised you since birth.

  34. Prostate Problems :

    Everybody that has not achieved the success they desire has reasons. They call them reasons and I call them excuses. Excuse Me, I did not succeed because I am _______________(fill in the blank). Do you have something to put in that space other than “I did not choose to be successful?” Whatever you call them reasons or excuses, they are really you limiting beliefs. You don’t believe you can be successful. If you don’t believe you can succeed then you won’t put forth the effort that is required to succeed.

    • You know what, people just don’t try hard enough… that’s the problem. If you can’t believe in yourself, why should others.

  35. Panic Attack Symptoms :

    Starting a business is never easy; I started my own about 4 years ago. Well actually I started several because some of them failed and I was determined to work for myself.

    Lets just say that I am profitable now finally! However it is no where near to where I would like to be; now I am just working on building my business more. At least now I can finally relax a little bit; which is very nice. But yes I agree with you about it take time.

    • Well, millionaires are almost never instant or overnight. Keep working at it and encourage yourself to grow in whatever way possible.

  36. Graeme @ findaposter.com :

    Its great to see that my suckly idea in on the right track. Just need to make that first dollar to make it all legal.

  37. Springboarders :

    Good advice on going ahead and starting your business if you have an idea. The only thing I would add to that is that it’s not enough to just have an idea. It’s important that you strongly believe that you’re idea is going to address someone’s need (or want). It takes time to build a business and it’s easy to quit (especially in the early days) when you find your idea doesn’t have traction in the marketplace. On the other hand, if you strongly believe you idea addresses a need, then there’s a good chance you will be more persistent, plough through the initial rough times and make the business work.

    • You know, most ideas can survive and even thrive, but only if the right mind is attached to it. If you believe in the product/service, the effect it creates on the consumer, and yourself, then you can make it happen.

  38. I do agree with you on the point “Save your money” as I have tried to minimize my expenditure when I started my own business and I thought it was a good decision now. Thanks

    • It should be a concept that you take on throughout your life. Live below your means.

    • Fahad (Make|Money|Online) :

      i also agree with this point we should develope our assets first instead of wasting money by buying luxury or unproductive things.

  39. Brett Tilford :

    Awesome post Neil. I appreciated your honesty about there being no secret sauce to marketing your business and increasing revenue. Three things that have helped me is to constantly keep learning by talking with interesting people, listening to great speeches, and reading quality books.

  40. David Frosdick :

    I love that picture. If I saw that sign in a garden and kids were making a snowman, I would interview them!!

    One thing that holds people back from starting a business, is they try to setup everything perfectly and years can go by before they perfect it all.

    Great article, thanks.

  41. My question is what can you do if you have a good idea but you don’t have the money to give it a try?

    • You need to learn sales skills and sell investors on why they should invest in you.

      • That is a good idea, but how you said, you have to own very deep sales skills in order to convince someone to invest in a business which nobody knows if it will work or not you can give it a try anyway.

        • It’s 1. practice and 2. a numbers game. Sales is a process that requires a ton of rejection. Most people will tell you know, but you only need 1 or 2 ‘yeses’.

          • I agree with you. But some people will be disappointed after receiving some negative answers and they won’t get to receiving some positive answers because they already abandoned their cause. Perseverance is the key!

  42. Ya thats how i feel alot people are lazy they want all the money and the fame and stuff with no work but it is the culture we live in this country.

  43. Well that’s almost everyone… want the success with out doing what it takes to earning it. That’s why there are only a handful of people who are successful and a titanic boat load of people who aren’t.

  44. Fahad (Make|Money|Online) :

    great advices for newbies in business field. but in my opinion dreaming to a little extent is good because it urge us to work hard to convert our dreams into reality. but with some dreams it is necessary to work hard. i agree too much dreaming with even a little hard work is waste of time.

    • There comes a time when you need to take action. You can’t just sit around dreaming of your ideas because chances are that someone else will beat you to it. Then you’ll beat yourself up for not doing it yourself.

    • Nobody says dreaming isn’t good, but as Neil said it comes a time when you need to stop dreaming and start acting towards achieving that dream. You just have to feel when is the right time.

      • Learn to feel comfortable with the feeling of being uncomfortable about situations your placed in. That alone will take you far.

  45. Neil this is exactly the advice I needed to read. We’re a small web shop evaluating a few different product ideas, and I’ve been trying to collect advice and feedback for maybe a week or two now. I had the growing conclusion that I was at risk of analysis paralysis, and your blog post was the straw. So…thanks!

    • You know, a good strategy is for you to test out various ways and then incorporate the ones that your users find best.

  46. Great information. Thanks for sharing. How lng have you been blogging?

    • I’ve been blogging for a few years now… a lot of people don’t understand that it’s really a career than just a part time gig 😉

  47. Neil, how strategic is offering free service upfront for a start up? And would it be wise to do so in order to earn honest testimonials? I am writing a book for the first time about start ups and I would like to validate the knowledge I am about to write about. I was thinking offering to put the knowledge to the test a few times for free would help with that process. What do you think?

    • Well, what you should do is research people who are in the same niche as you and find out what kind of input they can give your book.

  48. I wanted to tell my story after reading this. When I was 18 my brother and I started a niche printing company. Our first year in business brought in mid-six figures. We didn’t know much about business, but we made a great product and had 1000’s of loyal, repeat customers.

    I’m now 22, and struggling with some depression due to a huge down swing in our revenue.

    With so much time, we re-grouped, went back to the drawing board and said, “in 2010 we’re gonna come back swinging harder than ever.” Right now we’re barely paying our bills, investing in advertising and marketing is out of the question. We need to be creative.

    As a designer/developer by ‘trade’, I’ve began to build our new eCommerce store, new email campaigns, direct2mail campaigns, and we’re adding over 500 products to our lineup in 3 new ‘sub’ niche markets.

    Life is pretty difficult right now. I find myself staring at my computer screen for hours, completely empty. I know the only barrier to me being back on the road towards success is to just do it. But I’m having a hard time. I’m up late at night, I’m groggy in the morning. It’s a vicious cycle.

    I know many others are in the same boat. It may be the economy, we love to blame that. But I know there is opportunity in ever down turn. They say buy low, sell high right?

    Maybe I’m just having my 1/4 life crisis?

    • Mike, I understand where your coming from… https://www.quicksprout.com/2009/11/10/my-million-dollar-mistake/

      The situations we’re put in are actually just opportunities in disguise. I was once in the same situation as you… in fact, I was there a few times. You’ll notice that most people who become successful have gone through the same thing.

      The thing with these events are not them actually happening… they are the way you react to it. You seem like a smart guy… you just need to keep on pushing.

  49. I’m pretty sure the crisis is almost over, and there are plenty of opportunities for all of us entrepreneurs! There’s, for instance, always money in making stuff like funerals and weddings and insurance cheaper.

  50. Active RFID Tag :

    Always look for niche market…where by not many compete against and you can survive there for a while…

    • That’s the ideal goal, but sometimes hard to do. Do what you passionate about and the journey will be more rewarding than the end.

  51. Vehicle Insurance Quotes :

    The business opportunity is always there, is depends on how look into it, your dedication, your best idea and your hard work. Some days you will be successful…

    • Some days you’ll be successful while other days you wont, but the importance is in how you react to either situation.

  52. Health Insurance :

    A lot of this seems basic to people who already make money in a business. I think it is great advice for startt ups and a good reminder for people with current businesses.

    It’s easy to slack once the money starts comming in so it is a good review for all of us.

    • It is basic for some people, but for the majority of the world, it’s brand new. You need to be in a perpetual state of being hungry for more.

  53. Its hard to fake hungry.

    The outset, when we are out to prove ourselves or our Idea, is motivating. The crowd leaves the big growth slows and then, like has been stated, we go slack.

    I read a quote that basically said the natural state of business is growth, I believe it. Bo Schembecler of the Michigan Wolverines said ” you get better or you get worse” and I think those are the two realities we can choose from.

    Thanks for the great Post.

    Joe @ home business ideas

  54. lung cancer survival rate :

    Target yourself with plan, review it stage by stage, if stage 1 meeting your goal & target, let’s move to stage 2 then

    • Exactly, create a step by step plan and follow it verbatim. If you can create the discipline you need, then you’ll be able to go the next level.

  55. SAT Study Guide :

    Using your competitors and researching what they do is a perfect way to work out your approach to a new market.

    Analyse what they do and how, with what, from what and then work out how you can make it / offer it / serve it better!

    So many people say they won’t start a new business in a competitive market because there’s too much competition. But the flip side to that is – where there is strong competition, there lies a potential for strong demand. Fashion a product or service that makes you distinctive (through quality, support, benefits etc) and you have your USP (Unique Selling Point) based off of proven sellers!

    Without being struck by analysis paralysis – research is a must do whenever starting a new business!

    • Competition is going to be everywhere… thats just something people say when all they have are excuses of why they can’t do it.

  56. Italian Leather Jackets :

    Recently got a new business idea. Got really excited about it, but have not tested it out yet.

    Btw, for all the ideas that you have, do you share it out with your family and friends or do you usually keep it to yourself?

    • I talk to my partner about what the idea is and then we discuss whether it’s something we can put into action or not. You should discuss your idea with people you trust.

  57. lung cancer survival rate :

    Yes, talk openly with your partner than your partner will openly talk to you, is like both way communication I guess… 🙂

  58. This is great advice. I’ve spent several years thinking about startup ideas, wondering if my ideas were any good, and reading articles about HOW to start a startup – without actually DOING anything about it.

    A couple months ago I decided it was time to actually do something. I’ve got a startup under development now that should be online within the next couple weeks. I wrote much of the initial code myself to cut costs, and hired a professional team (pretty cheap) to do the design work. Reading your blog has definitely been educational and inspirational!

    • Wow that’s great! Good for you… I would love to see what you’ve implemented so be sure to share with us your work.

  59. Textbook Rental :

    I think more Business were formed by proving someone else wrong. Great article, It takes a certain drive and determination that not everyone has, and the picture is right some entrepreneurs are just plain lazy check out the http://www.theentrepreneursshow.com/

    • Not just some… most of them. It’s one of those things where someone either makes it big or they don’t make it at all.

  60. I did the exact thing that some of the other contributors have done and used an attorney for the LLC creation. I’m sure I paid 3 or 4 times what I should have.

    I also agree with your point about proving people wrong as it can be a huge motivator. I started my first company partly in response from a challenge from my father. He implied that I didn’t have the organization skills to create a profitable company (in a nice way). I took that challenge and started my first online venture. It started producing profit by the 2nd year and has been profitable ever since.

    • wow, good for you Brad. Sometimes people need that little fire under their butt to move forward. We all make mistakes and end up paying several hundred or even thousands more for things that we shouldn’t. It definitely sucks, but happens.

  61. Jay Jalodomisa :

    Hey Neil,

    What’s interesting is that some of the “craziest” ideas in the world are huge successes today!

    Some examples:

    – The internet
    – The computer
    – The cell phone
    – The light bulb

    Man I could go on forever…

    The point I’m trying to make is that what sounds crazy today maybe reality tomorrow, something to think about the future of the internet.

    A better example – look at your CrazyEgg company, if you said that 20 years ago people would die laughing. The fact that its a running business today is amazing man!

    Sincerely,
    Jay Jalodomisa

    • You’re right Jay, sometimes you’ll notice that some ideas are released far to early than they should be… when this happens, they never really make it. That’s why you need to be careful with when you put whatever idea you have to the public…. you need to as k yourself, are people ready for (X). If they aren’t can I sell people on why they need it etc.

  62. revizyon ile organize matbaacılık brnckvvtmllttrhaberi :

    Always look for niche market…where by not many compete against and you can survive there for a while

    • Yes, survive until they realize you’re making money and then go after you with deeper pockets 😉 I’m jk… yes very true.

  63. Textbook Rental :

    The snuggie was dreamed a product Idea that sucks and it made it, but the reverse is true most of the time. There is an invetors forum that meets at the old Edison home which is really cool but there are so many inventions that people have that I can’t believe that they invested their own money into.

  64. Fortunately I did not know how difficult blogging is, otherwise I wouldn’t have started blogging.
    It’s funny how knowledge sometimes makes us fearful, instead of confidence.

    • Blogging may not be difficult to do, but the consistency is the hardest part. If you’re not consistent, you won’t succeed as a blogger.

  65. The Chiropractor :

    I love the title and picture. Funny! It got me to read your whole article. I got some sucky ideas. But I’m stuck on them and trying like heck to prove me wrong!

    • Well don’t worry, most people have sucky ideas… at least you can acknowledge them and move forward.

  66. it is a very simple but great post, the fact is that you never know until you try, and try and try, again and again , as it has been said great man are the ones that make more mistakes and try again

  67. I have done a couple of small start ups which ended up failing but there was a point in time where it started to become profitable and it is funny how when you start it people laugh at you. And they say yea yea…. And start telling you their idea and this is how it needs to work. Then when the money starts pouring in they want to jump on in with you and tell you how good everything is and how awesome you are.

    Lets just say this is happening again lol

  68. It’s a really sad mistake that most business owners make when they first start. I must confess I made the similar mistake when I first started too.

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