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[Video] How to Find a Business Idea – Part 1

Struggling to find a business idea that can double your entrepreneurial courage?  Watch this video to come up with a short list of ideas that match your strengths and is demanded by customers.  It’s the first video in a two-part series.

Video Transcript:

Greetings Venture Superfly leaders, this is John Benzick from Venture Superfly, and welcome to the video called “How to Discover a Business Idea That You Can Be Passionate About” – an idea that will crush your fear of starting a business and unleash your confidence in – one day – leaving your job.

[  Click here to access the template mentioned in this video. ]

Many of you are interested in starting your own business, or looking to create a supplemental revenue stream for yourself. But you either don’t have a business idea yet, or you’re not sure about a business idea that you already have.

This video will touch on how to create a short list of ideas and we’ll save the next video to determine that one business idea that you should really pursue and test.

So this video is really the first of a two-part series to help you come up with 3 to 5 ideas worthy of your consideration.

So let’s jump into it.

Coming up with a good business idea starts with spotting opportunity.  There are many ways to spot opportunities and turn them into business ideas.  For our purposes, we will take the following approach.

First, with some degree of introspection and self-assessment, you’ll set out to identify your Internal Opportunities, things about yourself – key opportunities about you and within you – that you can leverage (for example your strengths, your interest areas, your know-how and your values).

We start with this internal assessment because any business idea that isn’t in harmony with your purpose, values, interests, and skills, won’t be sustainable. It’ll be difficult to commit to, and be enthusiastic about, over the long haul.

Second, you’ll identify your External Opportunities. These will include spotting trends, identifying things you can improve, ways to improve customer service, among others. These are things that you’ll have to research, be asked to think about, or detect from your own experiences.

And third, you’ll mix both sets of opportunities, your Internal with External Opportunities, look for synergies and alignment between the two, and then prioritize those that fit your personal goals and meet a market need.

As mentioned previously, the goal in this video is to come up with a list of 3 to 5 ideas.

So, here we are; we’ll mix the two sets of opportunities, and we’ll look for business opportunities that converge in this area. Your venture opportunity will lie here at this intersection.

Along with walking through these steps in this video, we’ll also provide a template (or you can simply create your own) so that you can sketch-out some ideas. The template will look like this.

Here on the left you will list your Internal Opportunities. And on this right side you will list your External Opportunities.

Internal Opportunities being:

  • what you’re good at (your strengths)
  • your interests (things you’re passionate about)
  • subjects you understand (your know-how)
  • our values

And External Opportunities being:

  • growth opportunities (or growth product and service categories)
  • trends that you can research or spot (I’ll share examples of all of these in the next section)
  • glaring needs that you can be fulfilled by a new product or service
  • things you can improve (maybe based on your own customer experience)
  • ways to better leverage technology
  • ways to improve customer service
  • ways to streamline operations of a particular business

[  Click here to access the template mentioned in this video. ]

So, starting out, let’s consider an example. Let’s say you’re good at things like “direct marketing,” “multi-tasking,” “analytics,” “team-building” and “coaching.”

And let’s say your interests are “recipe development,” “active lifestyles,” “fashion,” “architecture,” “interior design” and “blues music.”

Your special knowledge might include things like “research,” “team dynamics,” “writing” and “healthy cooking.”

And your values might include things like “health,” “creativity,” “human potential,” “sustainability” and “family.”

And regarding your External Opportunities (you’ll need to do some research here) maybe you can Google “growth industries” and/or “fastest growing product and service categories” and come up with things like “green technology,” “wellness,” “organics” and “functional beverages.””

Or you can Google “product and service growth trends” and find things like “pet care,” “product design,” “food trucks” and “assisted-living senior care.”

Or you can list some glaring needs that you see, such as “simple-to-use consumer electronics for seniors.” Or “college laundry service.”

Or things you can improve: “online education for seniors.” Or “internal hospital communications.”

You can explore ways to better leverage technology. For example: “project management for entrepreneurs;” “elder-care in-home monitoring.”

And ways to improve customer service, such as “garbage collection;” “cable or satellite TV;” “dental appointment scheduling.”

Or ways to streamline operations with ideas like “independent auto parts retailers” or “private practice dentist administration.”

These are all just examples. And all of these could be derived from simple online research or just being more aware and sensitive to your environment.

So, let’s analyze what we have here.

If we were to review the information, we can connect the dots between and among some of our answers. For example, in this case, we might link “fashion,” “writing” and “pet care.” So, perhaps a “pet fashion blog” is one idea consider.

Or consider another example. Maybe you see an attractive combination among “direct marketing,” “functional beverages,” “health,” and “recipe development.” In this instance, perhaps you could consider a business where you do “multi-level marketing of organic beverages.”

Or for a third example, maybe your good at “coaching,” your interested in “active lifestyles” and you’ve spotted a trend: “assisted-living for seniors.” So this business idea could result in you becoming a “wellness coach for seniors.“

So, again, what we’ve done here is merged your Internal Opportunities with your External Opportunities to come up with a short list of business ideas.

Now here, coming back to our blank template, what would you insert into each of these sections? That is the question, and that is your assignment.

What are the top 3 to 5 business ideas that you will come up with? It’ll be exciting to find out!

And once you come up with your short list, we’ll have another video waiting for you, to further evaluate these ideas, and to come up with that one idea that is both motivating to you and is in demand among customers.

Now it’s your turn to start generating your own ideas.

Good luck and let me know how I can help you further!

[  Click here to access the template mentioned in this video. ]

Click HERE to watch the 2nd part of this 2-part video series. 


About the author, John

John Benzick is an entrepreneurship coach and the founder of Venture Superfly. He is a Tech Partner at the venture-capital fund of Matchstick Ventures, a Mentor with Techstars Retail accelerator, an Entrepreneur-In-Residence and (former CEO-in-Residence) at the University of Minnesota, and founder and owner in two consumer product businesses. Click the button below to learn more.

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