What do all big and super successful companies have in common? They all began with a million dollar idea. But how did these corporations come up with the big idea? They were certainly not sitting around waiting for some mysterious spell of luck or flash of inspiration. Therefore, the bottom line is that; luck and spontaneity hardly played any role.
The greatest entrepreneurs of our time have employed some ingenious techniques to come up with million dollar ideas. These techniques have been tried and tested over the years and you too can apply them to generate a million dollar idea
Here are 15 such techniques:
1. Ensure there’s money in your target market
Don’t get too emotionally attached to your big idea before you conduct proper market research. For it to be a million dollar idea, there has to be money in that market, right? Find out the estimated size of the market, the clients, and consumers and how much cash they have to burn in your product or service.
2. Put all the pieces together
Common wisdom dictates that it is generally not a good idea to reinvent the wheel. Instead, you can target an already successful segment that already has a few pieces of inventions and brings them all together.
Take, Youtube for instance. They did not invent digital cameras, broadband Internet connections, web hosting or any of the web uploading technologies. The creators simply figured out a way to bring all those elements together in a simple online-sharing video platform.
3. Test some variation of an existing idea
Some of the greatest products are simply variations of an already existing and successful idea. It may be your own idea or someone else’s innovation. You can improve the idea, find a sub-market or niche within the main market. Or better yet, you can simply provide an alternative.
4. Provide a new twist to an old idea
Other than providing a variation to an existing idea, you can consider reworking an old idea. You could bring fresh interest and buzz within an existing market that could be worth millions.
Facebook, for instance, was not the first social networking site. However, they are well ahead of the pack at the moment. Mark Zuckerberg saw a way to provide new twists and features that others still hadn’t seen. As a result, he turned modern social on its head.
5. Play around with opposites
When a million dollar idea explodes and becomes super popular, the opposite end of the idea often becomes popular as well. A good chunk of consumers or customers tend to turn away from the mainstream idea and look for alternatives. The opposite side of a million dollar idea can also turn into another million-dollar idea.
6. Pick an idea that works in one market and tailor it to another
Find out what works in another market and figure out a way to make it work in another market. It doesn’t need to be a complete replication. You can pick out the best aspects of the idea and figure out how it can apply in a different context.
7. Keep it simple
This cannot be overemphasized. You’ll not want to overcomplicate a great idea because it can easily provide the firepower to your competition. They can take your good idea and generate a million dollar idea by simplifying it. Studies show that if the purchasing decision for your products and services is difficult to make, customers are likely to pass and find alternatives.
8. Surround yourself with other great thinkers
There is always someone who is smarter or more creative than you. Always hang around people who think big and are either thinking about a million dollar idea or have already executed one. Their ingenuity and creativity will certainly rub off on you and spur you on towards your ambitions.
Find you own little tribe within which you can bounce off ideas or even collaborate. It will provide some zest and keep you hyper-focused on generating a million dollar idea.
9. Ignore naysayers but accept constructive criticism
There will always be folks who don’t get your idea. Others still will want to crap all over your idea, just for the heck of it. For every successful idea out there, there was always someone who thought it couldn’t be done. Don’t let these comments or negativity about your idea throw you off course. These people will only waste your time and energy.
On the other hand, take up any constructive criticism and use it to improve your idea. Some good constructive feedback can help to shape your idea for the better. You’ll have to know how to distinguish the two. Luckily, it’s not that hard
You will be most creative when you are passionate and enthusiastic about your idea. It is almost impossible to generate a million dollar idea where there is hardly any passion. When you infuse your mind with burning curiosity and enthusiasm, your creative engines are fired up. Your motivation will go through the roof, and you are more likely to generate a million dollar idea.
11. Take advantage of what you already have
A wise old geezer once said, “we look too far for things that are too near.” Pursuing new opportunities by leveraging your existing resources will give you a great head start in a particular market. It is not so much about having the right amount and type of resources as it is exploring your existing resources.
12. Build products or services that support other successful products
Sometimes, you can generate a million dollar idea without creating the massive infrastructure or resources. You can simply design new products that piggyback on existing successful products. They can enhance or simply provide an added benefit. Think cellphone back covers or Flat screen TV-mounting brackets.
13. Solve a problem
Find problems, and they are many, out there and come up with creative ways to solve them. Many of the great and successful ideas were born out problems. You don’t have to try and figure out how to stop the apocalypse. Look for common everyday problems and you could be on to a million dollar idea before you know it.
14. Generate a lot of ideas
Someone once said, “Ideas are like chessmen moving forward. They may be beaten, but they always start a winning game.” A million dollar idea will likely not spring out of a flash of inspiration. It will probably be the result of several attempts.
Even if you fail on one idea, keep trying out other approaches or new ideas. Change your perspective. You may have to get all the dumb ideas out of the way so that you can finally get to a million dollar idea.
15. Do something with your ideas
A million dollar idea is not worth much on paper. Proof of concept is more valuable and can attract the kind of support to get your idea off the ground. Don’t just sit around with your grand plans on your laptop. Let’s put it this way; a million idea is something that many people noticed, but only one person grasped and ran with it to full execution.
Do you have some ingenious million-dollar-idea-generation techniques of your own? Be a good sport and share with us in the comments section, won’t you?