Having a business idea can be super exciting. It’s like getting an early Christmas gift in April. At that moment, you feel like all your financial problems are about to take the next flight off your life. However, making one wrong move could be a time bomb waiting to explode.
Not to worry, I’ll walk you through 5 proven steps on what to do when you have one but first, let us establish the characteristics of a promising business so you can quickly check to know if your business idea possesses them. Your business idea must be:
- Innovative: It must create value, be replicable at an economical cost and satisfy a specific need.
- Unique: Must be one of it’s a kind either in service delivery or product branding.
- Problem-solving: Your business idea must be a solution to a problem or problems.
- Profitable: You should be able to make something out of it.
Now that we’ve established that, we can now delve into the 5 proven steps to take.
1. TALK TO SOMEONE.
Okay, you probably were not expecting this to be the first thing I’ll ask you to do. Maybe you wanted me to go straight to ‘Write a business plan’ or ‘just start with whatever you have’. Sorry to break your heart but jumping straight into that speed train might leave you with a broken arm or leg.
I tried it in 2016 with a business idea I had. It was supposed to be the best thing to happen to the Retail Business in Northern Nigeria. Maybe, it would have been if I shared my idea with someone. Five months later, I didn’t know what I was doing. I practically had zero ideas on how to thrive in the market. One conversation with a business expert could have gone an extra mile to help in refining and perfecting my vision.
So yes, when you have a business idea that you think has real potential, don’t keep it to yourself. Talk to a business expert.
2. RESEARCH THE MARKET
I can’t overemphasize the importance of Market Research. I’ll share a few benefits to validate why this should be the second step you take.
- It minimises any investment risk.
- It identifies potential threats and opportunities.
- It facilitates strategic planning.
- It focuses on customer needs and demands.
- It helps to discover your’s and your competitor’s strengths and weaknesses.
When performing market research, it is vital to answer these questions.
- Who are your competitors?
- What will you do differently?
- Who is your target market?
- How will you reach them?
- What is your contingency plan?
Answering these questions will put you on the right track to successfully launching and sustaining your business.
3. DRAFT A BUSINESS PLAN.
Finally, we have gotten to the step you’ve been waiting to hear; Business Plan. You may be wondering why you need one. I’ll show you.
- It will give you a clearer picture of your business.
- It will enable you to work out the goals you want to achieve in your business.
- It will layout strategies to reach your business goals.
- It will help you keep track of your progress and make necessary decisions per time.
You must also understand that you don’t need to write your business plan yourself. You can always contact experts to handle that for you.
4. BUILD A PROTOTYPE.
You wouldn’t want to introduce your product or service without first testing what you have now. Would you? I strongly advise that you don’t.
A prototype could be a simple website representing the future business that you use to collect information from interested individuals. Of course, I don’t expect you to create a website yourself(except you’re a web designer) hence the need to get help from professionals.
5. RAISE FUNDS.
This is the last step to take. I bet you were already wondering when I’ll talk about money. Well, we’re here now.
You need to consider how much money you need to start up and how you would like to fund your new enterprise.
There are several ways to raise funds for your business. It could be through family and friends, crowdfunding etc. You need to find a method that suits your business and run with it. Don’t allow finances to kill your business idea.
I believe that these steps will guide you on what to do with that great business idea.
Want to know more? Download Our Free E-book on Idea Validation Workbook and learn how to validate your idea before investing.
We are Charisol, a Software Development Agency with a community of talented software developers that leverage on the “work without walls” culture to provide solutions for clients around the world. Our services span from Software Designing, App development, Digital Marketing, Social Media Marketing, Content Writing & Marketing, to Search Engine Optimisation.
Follow us on Medium and social media: