The good news for any budding entrepreneur is that awesome business ideas are all around you. The tricky part is turning an idea into a successful business, and for that, you need a good measure of market research, a sound industry knowledge base, and ideally, oodles of passion (among a few other things).
Before we get into the nitty-gritty of how you can transform an idea into a great business, let's look at how you can maximise your chances of success.
Choose an idea that’s right for you
A good starting point is to look at your passions. If you are really into food and drink, then think about the ways you can disrupt the hospitality industry. Look at what problems the industry has and solve them. Take a leaf out of the book of relatively new industry players, such as Vinomofo. These off-beat and casual wine-loving entrepreneurs brought their idea from its conception in a small garage in the suburbs of Adelaide and took it to the nation.
The “mofo” founders sent shivers up the spine of the big retailers by beating them to the punch in offering one of the first affordable, curated (and cool) online wine-to-your-door services in Australia. Looking at those who have ‘been there and done that’ can give you some invaluable lessons and show you what’s possible. Next, you’ll want to have a think about your own personal goals and values. At Melbourne Polytechnic we’ve had a student complete our VTAC Diploma of Business and make their first million the next year by manufacturing car parts abroad and importing them to Australia. On the other hand, we’ve had a student who used their qualification to open an ice cream van, and they simply love it and the lifestyle.
Your business is a personal choice, ultimately it should earn you the amount of money that is going to make you happy. If it makes you happy, then, it is a success.
To get to this happy place you’ll want to have a plan. A business plan doesn’t require a lot of money, it just requires an investment of time into industry and market research. If you need convincing that a business plan is worth it, just take a peek at the following stats: The Australian Bureau of Statistics has recorded that 60 percent of Australian small businesses close their doors within three years of starting.
While, according to a report from the Australian Securities and Investments Commission, 46 percent of businesses failed from July 2015 to June 2016 because they suffered from poor strategic management. As you start your plan, the first thing you want to do is get an in-depth understanding of your competition and identify your points of difference. Think about how you’ll market the business:
Do you understand your target market
And do you know where to find them? Will you rely on word of mouth or a more sophisticated social media strategy? It all depends on the type of business you are looking to run. A good tip is to be conservative and realistic in your financial projections. You’ll need to answer the all-important question of cash flow, how you’ll get it and do you know you can rely on it. Then, you’ll need to think about tailoring your plan to different types of investors, whether they are a private investor, an incubator, venture capitalist or the bank. The key is in doing your research. The deeper you research the more chance you will have of success.
It will mean you can actually have good conversations with people that mean something. It will mean you can sell your idea. It’s how you’ll make your idea a reality. And like we said, there are awesome business ideas are all around you (here’s 20).
Our VTAC Diploma of business gives budding entrepreneurs the skills to build a business through marketing, financial reporting, risk management and online solutions. Contact us to today to find out more.