A “million-dollar idea” isn’t worth a dime if it isn’t planned, built, marketed, and run correctly.
Is it shocking to hear that?
Ideas are as plentiful as drops of water in the ocean.
Most ideas are never brought to life and die in darkness, never being realized.
This is why we say, “Execution is everything.”
Many web developers joke about how many domain names they have hoarded for ideas that they haven’t started yet. In this regard, they are no different from the “idea guys” who want to build the next Facebook or YouTube for a song.
Most ideas die from natural causes, such as apathy, procrastination, lack of time, or lack of resources. Some ideas die prematurely because they have not been thought out to their conclusion, or have a shaky foundation. When ideas are brought into the living world, any flaws in their plans are exposed quickly.
Ideas are valuable, only if they are solving a problem or fulfilling a need that people actually have.
There are hundreds of half-baked business ideas hatched every day. You’ll find these in Silicon Valley as well as Craigslist.
Ideas always sound good when they are conceived in a vacuum. The first hurdle a business idea has to cross is whether people are even interested. The second hurdle is the critical one: If the business existed, would people pay for it?
If you ask people if they would pay for your product/service, they will say YES, but when the product launches, the results might be very different.
People don’t want to hurt your feelings. They want to feel like they are giving the “right” answer. They may believe they would purchase your product, but until they actually part with their money, their words are meaningless.
Two ways to test if an idea is valid:
- Launch a smaller version of the product, see if people pay.
- Crowd-fund the idea, see if people pledge money.
Customers vote with their wallets, not their words.
Many believe being first to a market with an idea is an advantage. It may be a danger sign if no one else has built something similar to your idea. If there is a crowded marketplace, that is a good sign! It proves that there is a need, and people will pay money for that product or service.
It might be valuable to simply improve an existing solution in the marketplace.
Ideas are worth nothing if they are not researched, built, tested, and marketed.
Ideas are easy. Execution is hard.