Back again!? Thanks a lot for reading my blog, I think I love you now. This time I would like to teach you some basic skills on how to come up with innovative ideas for business. There are lots of ways to develop these ideas, but I have developed a few custom ones myself I think are worth sharing.
Innovative ideas for business are getting more crucial each year when it comes to the survival of financially critical times. In this first post I’ll give tips and inspiration to those who want to start a brand new business. A second post focused on existing businesses will follow in the near future.
New businesses that start up with a fresh and innovative concept will have a good chance in staying afloat. Existing and more traditional businesses that are built on an older business model might want to refresh their strategy & design in order to maintain their wanted pace.
Contemplation & Success
Nowadays you think twice or even thrice before you start up your (first) new business. The golden years of entrepreneurship are far behind us. This means that we need a new approach, before we plunge ourselves into this rock ‘n roll lifestyle full of risks.
Firstly, your business needs to fulfill a significant need in our current market, this goes without saying.
Secondly, the basic concept of your business needs to stand out from the rest. This second one is becoming more and more important in tough times where the market seems to be fairly saturated. It’s clear that innovative ideas for business become key to an overall success.
Innovative Ideas For Business Startups
Starting up a business from scratch is the most exiting thing you can do in your career. You naturally think of a niche theme or concept you feel comfortable with. And you should! Your passion for the niche you decide on will power you to overcome the hurdles that lay ahead. Now let’s get to the part of being innovative. What does innovation actually mean? According to Wikipedia:
“Innovation is the creation of better or more effective products, processes, services, technologies, or ideas that are accepted by markets, governments, and society. Innovation differs from invention in that innovation refers to the use of a new idea or method, whereas invention refers more directly to the creation of the idea or method itself.”
I will discuss how to innovate business startups that already have an existing core idea. So, I’m not going to think of new startup ideas here, just about some methods to get them going. Besides the traditional methods I believe there are way more innovative ways to get a product noticed. These ways can be interpreted as pretty out-of-the box, so bear with me! I’ll discuss the following:
- Pimp your target audience
- Bring in the unthinkable
- Be colorful in gray areas
Pimp Your Target Audience
Each business targets audience in a certain expected way. For example: a TV channel that targets young male, generally tends to be high paced using loud music in their promotion. A trendy sneaker brand normally uses young actors in their commercials to really stick in their young buyers’ mind. All good. Now lets turn some of these facts around…
I believe elder people love all these products too. Action movies, sneakers, etc. Still we view our elderlies as old, grey and boring. We think they only buy stuff that supports their old life, like cruise holidays, hearing aid, etc. I’ve met many elder people in my life who love to wear trendy sneakers and watch action movies, and more. They simply don’t show it because they feel left out, it wouldn’t be normal to like stuff like that. The brand messages weren’t meant for them, right?
I think we should look at different target audiences we don’t think of targeting. Then, we pimp them! We market our product in such a way that we say it’s okay to be over 60 and wear certain hip shoes, clothes, hats, etc. In other words, use older people in your marketing campaign for once, instead of the obvious youngsters. Your brand will stand out, believe me! And then, later on you can make a shift back to the younger audience. I truly believe it brings more cohesion and respect between generations and your brand. And eventually more revenue.
There is a reason why I think this option is worth a try. The elder people who currently walk this globe have spent their younger years in far more modern times than we think. And this modern mindset will increase each year. You and I will grow old with all this modern stuff surrounding us. Are you going to be triggered by only the granny commercials when you’re 90? Give it a thought
Bring In The Unthinkable
This is a classic one. A classic way of idea development: take the obvious and add something illogical. For example: you want to start a bakery. Instead of placing some bread in the shop window, you display something else. Like a large photo print out of crop circles made in the grain fields. This is where the source of bread comes from (see picture below). The signs in the field could be your shop logo!
Yes I know, this will raise some questions from shoppers. But hey, you’ll get their attention. What I’m trying to say is this. Think of your niche first, then guide your thought process towards strange connections known within that niche. It’s important that the link shouldn’t be too obvious, this makes it more questionable and thus interesting. This link to your business could be described a ‘strange’ sublayer.
Be Colorful In Gray Areas
It’s hard to stand out these days. Again, I will turn around common sense here. If your business is within a field that is commonly colorless in its communication, add color! For example: if you start your own one-man finance consultancy, have a design style created in bright colors (see below). The days that only design agencies used many colors are hereby over!
With ‘gray areas’ it could also be a colorful shop window amidst grayish neighboring shops. See below.
Wrappin it Up!
So there you have it, just a few different scopes on how to come up with innovative ideas for business startups. There are of course a million options in between. I wrote this post to take you out of your comfort zone. Cause remember, times aren’t like 10 years ago and many businesses know this already. So now its up to you to walk that same path of innovation and stand out.
(post image by Leon Wu)