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So you have a business idea - great! Now what?

Test your idea

Talk to people

Can you explain your idea in a way that makes sense to people? This takes PRACTICE! Your idea will likely start off very convoluted, and include lots of, "well"s and "uhh"s... but every single time you try to explain it, and are met with a quizzical expression, you are learning to better articulate what could well be a world-changing idea!


Google

Has anyone already created your idea? You already gave your idea a quick scroll through Google whilst playing the game, but now is the time to put some extra time into it.

Should you be discouraged if your idea is not unique? Absolutely not! There are tonnes of businesses offering lawn-mowing services, but there are also tonnes of people who need their lawn mowed. Can you put a unique spin on a product or service that already exists? Can you make it serve the people you care most about better?


Build a prototype

This really just means making something real out of the idea you've had. That could be as simple as building a model out of cardboard. Can you build a prototype for a service-idea? Yes! Test the amount of time that fulfilling your customer's service experience might take. Test what exactly it is they value most about your service.


Test your prototype

Test your prototype

Test your prototype

Test your prototype

Test your prototype

I really can't say it any better, louder or clearer than that. It's one thing to have an idea, and even to create something real that approximates that idea. Well done for getting that far! But the proof of the pudding is in the eating. It's no good saying your pudding is the best in the world, if nobody's ever tasted it. To be honest, the first puddin' (as my grandma called them) you bake is probably going to be the exact opposite of good! It's another human saying, "Hmm, too salty. Why is this pudding salty?" that will prompt you to change the recipe, making it better and better each time you test it.

This is often referred to as the "Voice of Customer".

At the time of this writing, "Go Get Em" is on version 7.5. I have built it, received feedback by playing it, and then rebuilt it, seven and a half times, in other words. Which is a slow process! It's painful. It even hurts at times. This is your baby, that you're inviting other people to criticise! Whilst I definitely do not recommend going around criticising other peoples' babies... what I do recommend, is exposing your idea to the brains of other people. Good ideas will ultimately survive scrutiny, in one form or another.


Obtain the right to conduct business activity in Australia

Register as a Sole Trader or Partnership. These will be the structures most accessible at the level of company "Go Get Em" is talking about.


Don't get carried away - and don't let anyone else get carried away either

Seed capital

"To make money, you gotta spend money. And to spend money, you gotta have money."

Boy oh boy have I been there. For a number of years, I have split my time, in order to see "Go Get Em" get off the ground - and that continues at the time of my writing this. I have a part-time job as a barista that pays the bills - if only just. I frequently measure the number of copies of "Go Get Em" prototypes I'm able to produce, by the number of hours I have worked at the cafe that fortnight. (At the time of writing this, "Go Get Em" is not yet being sold). In case you're wondering, an hour at the cafe allows me to produce 2 copies of the game.


It might be tempting to think things like, "if just one family member would give me $5,000, maybe I could get this thing off the ground". I've thought that. I haven't had anyone offer it yet. But to be honest, even if they did, I would most certainly think twice about taking it. Here's why:

  • Unproven ideas are risky. "We'll make it back" is an admirable sentiment, but until you're actually selling your product or service in viable quantities, that's exactly what it is; a sentiment. And sentiment alone doesn't repay debts.

  • Business ruins families. Which sounds bleak! Doesn't it! And it is. It's one of those terrible realities of this world, but sadly, it does happen. People invest large sums of money in a person, or an idea, and sadly, sometimes things don't exactly go according to plan. What happens if you lose all the money? What happens to that relationship? What happens if you can't pay it back?

Be very careful about where you're getting your seed money from. My advice? Do whatever you possibly can:

  1. With your own personal savings.

  2. With small amounts of money from a diverse group of your friends and family (this way you never owe any one person too much).

  3. With organic revenue. In other words, start charging for your product or service as soon as possible. This will also give you access to precious market information, like exactly what, and how much, people will pay you for. A paying customer will also bring much, much more honest, and therefore much more useful, feedback.

A fourth case does exist in my experience, but it is rare - and priceless when it happens! Sometimes an 'angel' in your life might come along and say to you, "Here is some money, and I don't care if you're never able to pay it back." If you can get that in writing, that's even better! I have never asked anyone for this, and never will - and my strong advice would be that you shouldn't, either. You should always aim, in principle, to repay people what they lend you. Sometimes, though, perhaps someone will feel so called to your vision, that they willingly and voluntarily open their wallet to you. Certainly don't rely on this happening, but be aware that you just never know what inspirational impact your idea might be having on someone.


Get some allies around you

I personally have a private Facebook group that I use to update my friends, family, and anyone else close to me on the progress of my ideas. You wouldn't believe the amount of support and encouragement that group has garnered throughout the time of its existence - from simply offering encouragement, to getting actual, real investments from people who believe in me or my ideas.


Get in touch!

Did "Go Get Em" help you create a business idea? How's it going? Let us know by getting in touch!


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