How to find an idea for a #startup

Innovation Funnel

Following the first post in the series, in which I tried to clarify  some #startup notions, I feel that a question is still hanging in the air:

is my idea good enough for a startup?

No one can really answer this, but you. So, before you start tagging colourful post-it notes on a business model canvas and start testing your idea following a lean startup methodology, I suggest you do an initial check on reality. I know, you are going to say “here we go again, yet another method…” and I understand that if you search on the internet about how to develop an idea into a product, you will see thousands of methods, funnels and concepts. Yep, people love to dream and draw pretty diagrams, I do it too, but not this time. Lets keep it simple and understandable!

An idea is a narrative, think of it as a movie script. Your ideal customer is the movie star, his problem is the movie plot, your product / service is the happy ending!

Break down your idea, the movie script, to your ideal customer’s actions and check out what is feasible from current offerings. If you find something that is not available, mark it as an opportunity gap. You may look for opportunity gaps in:

  • the product / the service – aka technology (yes, it includes fruit & veg!)
  • the production method of the product / service – aka scalability
  • how one provides the product / service to the customer – aka logistics
  • how the customer interacts and pays for getting the product / service – aka business model

Please, heavily research the opportunity gaps, ask around and do it on a global scale. If you can not find readily available answers in terms of technology, scalability, logistics and financing then you may have struck a sweet spot. This sweet spot may actually be the startup idea. Remember a startup is a venture that can scale in an industrial manner! Anything else is not a startup!

Now, re-write the initial idea and make realising this sweet spot your mission, grab the lean canvas and start…

note: I have deliberately linked to some Google searches. Never forget that you are not the centre of the universe, right now there may be thousands of people who have already done what you are thinking of doing.