Has your idea got the X Factor?

Reality television shows such as the X Factor and Britain / America’s Got Talent are great at developing entertainers but who’s helping the entrepreneurs?

At Cloud, we’re convinced there’s a whole untapped body of latent talent in every community and society in every country and we’re determined to realise that potential with you.

Got a great idea; identified a solution to a problem or a different way of delivering existing services and products to market?

Yes?  Then you’re likely part of that latent pool waiting to be sourced.

Most would be entrepreneurs don’t get past the initial hurdles, so we’re going to explore the simple steps required to fulfil that potential – whether it’s a sole trader or a possible multi-national.

  • Start at the beginning

Is there a market for you?  Don’t think that because someone else is already doing it that you can’t break into that market also.  Virgin has broken into several established markets; EasyJet and Ryanair similarly.  Sainsburys; Morrisons; Asda; Walmart – they’re all offering similar services and they’re seeking market share.

Market share is tough for a small company or sole trader to gain from a large competitor but it’s a hurdle not a roadblock.  Other people are doing it so there must be a market!

  • What’s your USP?

Not all companies require a ‘unique selling point’ or USP but if you’re seeking to break into established markets, it helps to have one.  Even if you’re seeking to create a niche market, think about what’s different in your offer and why people would / should be interested.

  • How are you going to get your message across?

People need to know about you and your product / service before they can buy it so you need to get your message across to your audience.

That message should contain your USP.  Tell them why they should choose you over the competition or why they need / should want what you’re offering.  What’s the benefit to the consumer?  Put the customer first.

Depending on the size of your company and your budget, you can consider segmenting your market; targeting your communications and so on but don’t think that a small budget renders you useless, there are myriad ways in this hyperconnected marketplace to get your message out to the masses on a shoestring budget.

  • How are you going to deliver?

Once people hear and heed your call to action, you need to be ready to deliver.  Think logistically – what will you need in place to deliver?  What are the costs associated?  Do you have the necessary skills?

  • Business Plan

Now’s the time to capture all this in the business plan.

Great businesses are not built on paper and you shouldn’t think that a great business plan will shore up any holes in the preceding steps because it won’t.  MBA’s are achieved in the classroom, business kudos in the marketplace.

Now that you’re going to be operating as a business, you definitely need the latter.

  • Finance

Many aspiring entrepreneurs claim lack of finance as a barrier.  In reality, it’s a hurdle.  Any business can get over a lack of finance and, in fact, most successful businesses started out life with a lack of finance.

Frugal beginnings are often the strongest foundations on which successful businesses are built.  Pilot your business idea on a small scale so you can back out without massive debts if the business doesn’t take off.  If it works, take the profits you create, re-invest and allow organic growth so that your financial commitments are growing at the same pace as your marketplace.

  • Patience & Perseverance

Great oaks grow from small acorns – just not overnight.  Be patient and stick with it.  If you’re model’s right, the results will come.

Avoid the temptation to either plough masses of finance into the venture or to close it down prematurely.

If you can, get external help – business analysts; business consultants or even just feedback from previous customers can all provide valuable sources of information and potentially the small tweaks that will drive up performance and fulfil potential.

#Inspire!

Cloud Management Systems is a consultancy with a difference.  We draw on expertise from across the globe so that you only ever need to visit one place for truly world class consultancy.  From one-to-one executive coaching and mentoring for new managers and entrepreneurs to crowdsourced design solutions and marketing, we do it all so you can concentrate on being great!

Just click on the link or scan the QR code to visit the Cloud!  Inspire!

Comments
One Response to “Has your idea got the X Factor?”
  1. Colin Millar says:

    Interestingly, Simon Cowell and Will.i.Am will now be entering an ‘X-Factor’-esque search for the next big innovator! http://www.entrepreneur.com/blog/224542 for full details.

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