Many people who want to start the entrepreneurship journey get stuck at a point where they think that they need a brand new idea to start a business. Good ideas are important, but not mandatory to start a business.
Most of the time, we see startups with new ideas being highlighted in the media. Media loves stories of how a simple idea changed everything and such stories have a lot of demand in the market. It installs hope in people that they can also start something – if they just had the right idea.
To be honest, having good ideas are over-rated. Sometimes, people come up with “brilliant” ideas but they do not execute it properly. If you know how to execute well, you can succeed in business. An idea without execution is not going to be of any use.
Google is not the first search engine in the world. There were many search engines before Google such as Ask.com, Excite.com, Yahoo and so on. Google did a better job with their website rankings and Google has become the most used search engine in the world today.
Facebook is not the first social network in the world. Orkut, MySpace, Friendster, Hi5, and a lot of other social networks had the first mover advantage. Facebook was able to beat all of them because they executed the project well.
There are plenty of opportunities in the world that can be tapped into. If you keep your eyes open and look for problems in the world, you will get ideas on how to get solutions for the problems and get paid for it.
You have to make something people want. It might look like a simple thought, but many people get married to an idea and do not let go of it. People build something that they think people want and try very hard to convince the market to buy their products.
Instead of building something and then trying to convince people that they need it, you can go ahead and spend time in market research, understand what people want and then create a product that you are sure people would pay for.
Competition is a Good Thing
If you are entering a category where there are no competitors, it might not be as exciting as you think it might be. Many new entrepreneurs think that they have to enter a market where there is no competition. They think it will be easy to make a startup succeed in a market place where you are the only player.
Nine out of ten times, competition doesn’t exist in a category only if there is no opportunity in that category. If there is money to be made, there will be at least a few players who are already in the market.
When I started selling my digital marketing courses, there were plenty of people who were selling digital marketing courses already. I came in and did value innovation which helped me penetrate a crowded market.
One out of ten times, it could be an opportunity that no one else saw. May be you got lucky. In such cases, you might be having a first mover advantage and you can capitalize on it.
If you are the first mover, you still shouldn’t get too excited about it. As soon as you enter a new market that has a huge potential, others will start competing with you if they see that there is money to be made. You have to execute better than your competition to stay ahead in the market.
Many people enter a market and then lose out to the competition because of lack of resources and poor execution skills. It will be very rare that you can find a market segment that is yet to be tapped into.
Make sure that you have really found a gold mine before you get too excited about a new opportunity. 90% of the time, if there is money to be made in the market, then you should look for competitors. Observe what they are doing, what their customers lack and serve it to them.
If you can find a niche within a market, you can be a leader in that market segment and co-exist with your competitors. For example, Facebook and LinkedIn are social networks, but one focuses on personal life and the other focuses on professional life.
For professional networking, people prefer LinkedIn. Both the social networks can co-exist because they have focused on different segments and needs within the same market.
There is no need to over-think what you are going to do to make revenue and profits. Whatever product or service that you create, you just have to make sure that your customers are getting more in return for what they are paying for.
If you are able to give 10x value for the money that you charge for your products and services, you will be in business for a long time to come. If someone pays you 1000 rupees, the value of what they get in return should be at least 10,000 rupees.
Once you learn how to create value for your customers, you will not worry much about the competition. You will be able to rise above your competition and create insane value for your customers that they become your marketing machine. A good product is naturally spoken about and that will be your key to success as an entrepreneur.