Start Up Special (Blog -2) What makes an idea work?
We are already in 2017. Things have changed. Things were different in 1990 and even in early 2000. People used to believe in phrases like “An idea can change your life” and “Idea is everything”. Fast forward a decade later people have new phrases like – “An idea is worth a dime a dozen” – All thanks to internet penetration and technology boom. You spend a dime on your internet plans and you can search dozens of ideas that are never implemented or at least never implemented in your arena and locality. A blogger of automobiles will always be different from the blogger of cookery products but ultimately both of them are a blogger with different sub-services. Though even today brainstorming is not the thing of past and it will never be, but for startups, the phase of ideation has shrunken a bit negatively. Earlier people used to spend months and months to discover an idea and now – it’s simply an “adoption of another idea with mixing of our own perception based on our needs and requirements”
Today every idea works – Ebay is an online product seller and so is Amazon. Orkut was a social networking and so is Facebook and so is Google plus. One started and other followed the race with different perception and design of the similar types of products called Social Networking. Video sites like YouTube and Vimeo are part of same segment – Video Site. It has become easy for faster-developing countries like India to search a proven idea online and start a business in India. The concept of Indian companies like Flipkart and Ola are adapted from Amazon and Uber respectively. Similarly, USA has adapted the concept of cost effective technology and products from China. The circle keeps on rolling without ignoring the fact that “Every Idea has a potential to work”.
But how to make an idea work? What sets a business apart from other businesses? Why Orkut went down and why Facebook rise?
Let’s not ignore the fact that every idea has potential to get noticed even though it is copied or adapted but this also remains the fact that what sets apart an idea from another is:
A right execution at the right place at right time is all one need to make the idea work and to be successful.
Execution in simple words means – The carrying out of a plan, order, or course of action.
Execution is everything. If an awesome idea is not executed properly then it may lead to failure whereas if an average idea executed properly increases the chance of success by double.
Here are few ways that you can plan and act to make your idea work:
1) Pre-Launch Date:
Every idea has a potential to grow but what you select decides your journey in future. You might be attracted to make a social networking site. It’s a good idea but are you part of the herds who are trying to do the same thing or is this something you really want to do? In the former case, you will end up doing something that you don’t like and will give up on competition whereas in later case you will nurture the idea with your vision and through proper channel. Pick an idea that you feel you should try.
Next step is to filter your options like – Online v/s Offline, Bootstrap v/s Funding, and Sweat Equity v/s In-house salaried employees. This will give you the clear picture of where you want to go with the idea that you have in your mind.
Move on to design a prototype of the same. If you are tech savvy then Photoshop and other open source software will work in your favor and if not then a simple drawing with a pencil will also do wonders.
Next, filter your pricing and marketing models. Online marketing v/s Traditional marketing. Your pricing should be at par with the quality that you provide. Don’t worry about charging high, if you give better quality you deserve better price, simple. Your marketing will play an important role here – The backbone of your venture is Marketing and Branding. Design a strategy and its correlated options. Content and Social media will go well with online work and Local directory listings and Billboard will do wonders for offline work. Research and try multiple options that suit your strategy. Safe Advice: Play mix and match between online and offline marketing.
You now know what vision you have for your business and how to reach your audience.
2) Building and Launch Time:
The easiest part is the launch time because you have everything ready, all you have to do is implement it. Another thing is that the results will be limited to you only. If anything goes wrong then you can always come back and fix it. You are not answerable to any customers yet. If your idea works fine during building time it’s awesome if not still it’s awesome. Reflect your mistakes and rectify it. Notice simple mistake likes – the vision for the prototype looked good in Red but when you designed it, Blue was better. It happens and it will happen. Nothing to worry. None of your customers know that you went to Blue from Red. Try and see, see and try …keep going… this is the easiest part and the best time to make a perfect product.
Start executing your marketing strategy – Pre-launch marketing and creating buzz is an awesome way to start. Let people know that you are coming. Give hints of your product and tell them to sign up for the newsletter. Make them think about it and slowly and steadily create curiosity. People love curiosity.
Launch it! Go live. Inform everyone that you are here with something better and something worth trying.
3) Post Launch:
The toughest part of all is after you launch your product. Remember you rectified everything that could go wrong? Here is more – Thousands of people will tell you what has gone wrong. Something that you never felt or never noticed. Something that market is not looking for. Something that was not executed well. Something, something, something that never happened the way you wanted.
Relax, it’s a part of the story. Look closely and filter your options. How many of them who are giving feedback are genuine and how many of them you can implement? If your ratio is more then something has definitely gone wrong with your execution. If only a few people are negative about your product then their choices differ. You can’t make everyone happy.
Keep a regular follow up with you customers as they are the one who will help you to make a better product.
Marketing becomes more aggressive at this stage. Everyone needs to know what you have now but why it’s better is something they need to check before they pay you. Keep going with marketing, it’s a never ending game but worth a match.
Execution is important and not the idea. Every idea works if executed properly and even the best idea drops if not executed in a proper manner.
Does anyone remember their last scrap from Orkut?