Author Topic: When you have a million dollar (or more) idea  (Read 2485 times)

Dragonstrike

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When you have a million dollar (or more) idea
« on: April 22, 2017, 02:50:46 AM »
Ok, so like the title suggests:

When you come up with an idea that no one else has considered or accomplished, what do you do?

An innovation class taught me about the lean canvas model concept of applying a business plan in the right way when you make sure its engaged from customer feedback and the user of your product or service matches what you are giving them and what their needs are.

Someone once said "the most depressing place is a graveyard, because there you will find ideas never seen, inventions never created, and concepts never achieved". 

So, for you innovators out there, let's be frank and make headway.

My question is this: When you have the million dollar (or more) idea, but you don't have the skills to make the product or the business skills to compile the business plan, suppliers, etc, how to do you achieve it when all you are is the idea guy or innovator?

I ask because sometimes all I have is an idea, but I would only happily want to sell that idea and have someone with the best skills make it possible to be made. 

What do you guys think?

khizr

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Re: When you have a million dollar (or more) idea
« Reply #1 on: April 22, 2017, 10:15:43 AM »
Ideas are a bit worthless, what matters is execution and the process by which you take that idea and turn it into a business. Even if you have a great idea, the reality is that as you build/develop that idea into a business that "idea" will change and adapt and evolve and you will learn so much that what comes out the other side will be super different than where you started.

What am I trying?

1. Research - Scheduling interviews with people I think would be interested and asking them if they would be, testing assumptions on them to make sure I am holding as little personal bias as possible. Scheduling interviews with people who created something similar but a diff field to ask questions of how they got started, how they got their first 10 clients, advice etc. You will be amazed how many people are happy to help someone starting up. 

2. Make mockups of the product and run prospective people through that to get feedback. The lean model would say make a fake mockup and see if people actually use it, given that sometimes people are just being nice (esp depending on what country/state you are in - ie you might need to stress you need brutally honest feedback). Prior to a few businesses ago I would have done mockups in WordPress, now I have enough funds to hire a programmer.
*If it is a physical product or food product you would not believe how easy it is to create one on a 3d printer for very little money, or in a 3d program, or rent a commercial kitchen to do a test batch.

An "idea guy" without the drive to execute is just a dreamer. There are no "idea guys" out there who haven't also become doers.

You can do this. Start looking at how YOU can make this idea a reality, then pick something and start the process. You will learn so much on the journey and gain a ton of new skills. You might end up somewhere different but you have to start the process to find that out.

What is your idea?
*happy to help advise on with your skills how you could get started on this idea. You can do this :)

PS, don't fall in the trap of thinking your idea is the valuable part. You could give a group of 20 all the same idea and they would all go about creating something in a very different way. For every Facebook there were hundreds of people who had the same idea and just failed on marketing or coding etc.
« Last Edit: April 22, 2017, 10:17:40 AM by khizr »

Dragonstrike

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Re: When you have a million dollar (or more) idea
« Reply #2 on: April 22, 2017, 09:43:42 PM »
@khizr,

Yes, essentially you are right.  "Dreamers" are just the idea guys. 

I agree with your approach, and I am enthusiastic regarding the journey to making an idea come alive. 

What I'm hoping to not fall into is a pit trap where "one guy" does it all.  I can't imagine that every successful business out there fell on the shoulders of one person alone, but I'm hoping the lean model canvas approach fulfills the other roles in the long run.

As for the idea, its a product for the massage industry that I think can tap into a lot of markets: for the everyday massage therapist on the go for an easy applied service to bring to the literal massage table to a home commercial product for the everyday family.  And its not one product I have in my head, its really two for this area, but the first one being the better of the two.

Otherwise from what I can say here, that's all I am comfortable putting out.  I'd rather not risk losing the idea.

I can tell from the past, I was one of those guys who had an "idea" that wasn't achieve until someone else saw the same problem and solution and made it real.  It was a way to prevent dropping Iphones and losing them from your hand by having an attached kevar retractable cord available on your belt.  Lo and behold, years later someone called it the "cat 9" and invented it: retail market value above $20, Lol.


khizr

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Re: When you have a million dollar (or more) idea
« Reply #3 on: April 23, 2017, 09:14:14 AM »
@khizr,

Yes, essentially you are right.  "Dreamers" are just the idea guys. 

I agree with your approach, and I am enthusiastic regarding the journey to making an idea come alive. 

What I'm hoping to not fall into is a pit trap where "one guy" does it all.  I can't imagine that every successful business out there fell on the shoulders of one person alone, but I'm hoping the lean model canvas approach fulfills the other roles in the long run.

As for the idea, its a product for the massage industry that I think can tap into a lot of markets: for the everyday massage therapist on the go for an easy applied service to bring to the literal massage table to a home commercial product for the everyday family.  And its not one product I have in my head, its really two for this area, but the first one being the better of the two.

Otherwise from what I can say here, that's all I am comfortable putting out.  I'd rather not risk losing the idea.

I can tell from the past, I was one of those guys who had an "idea" that wasn't achieve until someone else saw the same problem and solution and made it real.  It was a way to prevent dropping Iphones and losing them from your hand by having an attached kevar retractable cord available on your belt.  Lo and behold, years later someone called it the "cat 9" and invented it: retail market value above $20, Lol.
As a business owner the buck stops with you :), so yes everything falls on you and then you have to slowly get people you trust and peel off those responsibilities. But ultimately it is you at the end of the day. It is really rewarding and fun though, and as your business gets bigger you can do some really cool stuff to empower others. Some businesses less than others of course, I've been in a 24/7 business almost every day since I was 19 so it is def nice to step out of the on call part.

Cool! There are companies that can mock up your ideas too, and so much help out there for physical products versus 10 years ago. Feel free to PM me and I can do my best to help you connect with what you need in terms of resources.

Just keep in mind, knockoffs from China will emerge if you have any success, make sure to brand heavily :)




khizr

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Re: When you have a million dollar (or more) idea
« Reply #4 on: April 24, 2017, 09:55:42 AM »
btw, feel free to PM me if you get stuck, happy to help and dig through any contacts I have if you hit a wall. Happy to help :)

CargoBiker

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Re: When you have a million dollar (or more) idea
« Reply #5 on: April 26, 2017, 05:02:28 AM »
Read up on licensing.

If you don't want to execute on the idea yourself, this might be the way to go.
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khizr

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Re: When you have a million dollar (or more) idea
« Reply #6 on: April 26, 2017, 10:25:35 AM »
Read up on licensing.

If you don't want to execute on the idea yourself, this might be the way to go.
Great tip!

I heard a podcast this morning about a guy who designs toys and licenses it to big toy companies, prob the closest to an "idea guy" you get. But he is still making mockups and so on to show how it works. Plus he has a track record and a ton of contacts.

craiglepaige

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Re: When you have a million dollar (or more) idea
« Reply #7 on: April 27, 2017, 03:29:28 PM »
I, myself, am an idea guy and I've finally decided to act on one.  If you search the "Ask" forum, you'll see I have been looking for a CAD designer and 3d modeler/printer, well it seems I have found one locally and will meet with him in person next week to discuss the prototypes.

I think the biggest factor was realizing my shortcomings and knowing I would need to trust and hire someone else to work with. I'm going to type up a simple contract and I hope to have a working prototype soon, which I will then try to sell to a bigger tool company or sell myself after finding a manufacturing company to produce the tools.

Good luck to everyone out there trying.
-The conqueror will always become a slave to his conquest.
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khizr

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Re: When you have a million dollar (or more) idea
« Reply #8 on: April 27, 2017, 03:37:01 PM »
I, myself, am an idea guy and I've finally decided to act on one.  If you search the "Ask" forum, you'll see I have been looking for a CAD designer and 3d modeler/printer, well it seems I have found one locally and will meet with him in person next week to discuss the prototypes.

I think the biggest factor was realizing my shortcomings and knowing I would need to trust and hire someone else to work with. I'm going to type up a simple contract and I hope to have a working prototype soon, which I will then try to sell to a bigger tool company or sell myself after finding a manufacturing company to produce the tools.

Good luck to everyone out there trying.
Awesome, please circle back and tell us how it goes! I'd love to get updates on the process and what you learn, what works, what doesn't work, etc :)

craiglepaige

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Re: When you have a million dollar (or more) idea
« Reply #9 on: April 27, 2017, 03:40:21 PM »
I, myself, am an idea guy and I've finally decided to act on one.  If you search the "Ask" forum, you'll see I have been looking for a CAD designer and 3d modeler/printer, well it seems I have found one locally and will meet with him in person next week to discuss the prototypes.

I think the biggest factor was realizing my shortcomings and knowing I would need to trust and hire someone else to work with. I'm going to type up a simple contract and I hope to have a working prototype soon, which I will then try to sell to a bigger tool company or sell myself after finding a manufacturing company to produce the tools.

Good luck to everyone out there trying.
Awesome, please circle back and tell us how it goes! I'd love to get updates on the process and what you learn, what works, what doesn't work, etc :)

Will do. I'm researching marketing strategies for the tools in order to have the best possible chance at finding a tool company interested in their design. Crossed​ fingers ;)
-The conqueror will always become a slave to his conquest.
-Don't ever mistake wealth for worth.

Smokystache

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Re: When you have a million dollar (or more) idea
« Reply #10 on: April 27, 2017, 06:58:30 PM »
... I think the biggest factor was realizing my shortcomings and knowing I would need to trust and hire someone else to work with....

I think this is huge - understanding what you can reasonably boot-strap to make sure you are actively involved with your own idea and cutting start-up costs when you can, but also recognizing when to outsource specific skills/pieces of the project. For my projects, finding a trusted graphic designer and illustrator was key to create the products and have a strong pitch to potential customers (especially big businesses that could be huge customers and expected professional-grade pitches).

But it can be tough to keep a good balance between outsourcing so you don't spend all your precious time learning new skills, and yet not outsourcing everything at top-dollar and having crazy start-up costs before you have customers/income.

CargoBiker

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Re: When you have a million dollar (or more) idea
« Reply #11 on: April 28, 2017, 01:39:39 AM »
I think the biggest factor was realizing my shortcomings and knowing I would need to trust and hire someone else to work with.

Learning to play to my strengths and outsource everything else was something that took me too long to learn.

I hired a brand developer for my new business a couple of weeks ago, because my strength is not in the creative... it's in the logistics/technical stuff.
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buchanaj

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Re: When you have a million dollar (or more) idea
« Reply #12 on: May 04, 2017, 08:57:09 AM »
Not what you're looking for but this reminded me of my biggest "failure to execute" experience.  Back when my kids were in soccer, I HATED sitting out in the cold with a blanket because I could never get the blanket to stay wrapped around my legs to stay warm.  Everytime I would stand up to cheer, I'd have to start the blanket battle all over again.  One day, it occurred to me that I could probably buy some fleece and make me a blanket that would meet my needs.  I purchased some fleece, hemmed the edges, added some snaps in various places and VOILA  . . . it worked like a charm.  I could have run up and down the sidelines with that thing and it would still stay in place.  Everyone told me . .  you need to make one of those and try to sell it . . . or manufacturer it . .  but, like you, I just didn't even know where to start so I just did nothing.

3 or 4 years later I'm watching TV and that damn SNUGGIE commercial came on.  That's right . . . I could have been at the helm of the SNUGGIE empire!!!

The lesson is . .  make it happen or find someone who can.  I still can't even look at a SNUGGIE without shedding a few tears!!

Jennifer 

Polish_Hammer

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Re: When you have a million dollar (or more) idea
« Reply #13 on: June 09, 2017, 12:24:51 PM »
Read up on licensing.

If you don't want to execute on the idea yourself, this might be the way to go.
Great tip!

I heard a podcast this morning about a guy who designs toys and licenses it to big toy companies, prob the closest to an "idea guy" you get. But he is still making mockups and so on to show how it works. Plus he has a track record and a ton of contacts.

Stephen Key (The inventor of Teddy Ruxpin) has a book on getting your product licensed,  Not a bad read, it's called "One Simple Idea"  You won't get rich like taking your product to market yourself but tif you get a lot of ideas you can profit with them without risking a lot of $$