How did your score?




You scored between 0 and 11


Not to worry, I can help!

Not every idea starts out perfect. In fact, most ideas require dozens of tweaks and adjustments before they are ready for the market. Don't get discouraged; we just need to identify the potential setbacks in order to streamline your business model.

Ask yourself:




For any business to have a chance at surviving, the answer to this question must be a resounding YES. For example, is doing taxes a major pain point for people? Absolutely! Thus, an accountant deciding to start his/her own tax filing business would be a solid business idea.

Think about what frustrates and annoys you most on a daily basis. Is there a solution to these annoyances, and, if so, can we reasonably expect people to pay for a solution? For example, having to cook dinner can be annoying, but not to the point at which you would hire a personal chef to prepare meals every night. It's just not realistic.

Think about a burning pain point that people would realistically pay to solve. Once you've figured this out, feel free to retry the Ideas Quiz.

You scored between 12 an 23


Not bad, but don't go to market just yet. 

Looks like you've got your hands on something that could potentially turn into a viable business, but before you start investing money, you need to run a few more checks and balances. 




You need to make sure you've searched the marketplace high and low for similar ideas that are already available. Ideally, you want to be first to market with any new product so that you can secure your spot as the leader in that space.

For example, we all know who the first person was to cross the Atlantic Ocean solo in an airplane―Charles Lindbergh, but do you remember the second person to cross solo? Likely not! Even though he did it in less time, it's more important to focus on being first than it is to be better. 

It's not the end of the world if there's already a similar idea available, but you'll need to adjust your target market in order to be successful. For example, if you didn't know the second person to cross the Atlantic, do you think you know the third? Well, in fact, I bet you do―Amelia Earhart! But why do you know her? Not because she was the third person to ever cross the Atlantic solo, but because she was the first woman to do so. Essentially, she created a new category in which she could be first. 

Key takeaway: if you're not the first person to come up with the idea, it's not the end of the world. You simply have to look at ways you can adjust your idea so that you can be first by creating a new category. 

You scored between 23 and 32



Looks like your idea is well on its way to becoming a viable business. There are just a few things you'll want to make sure you cover before getting started. 




First, make sure you can quickly and easily describe your idea in (preferably) one sentence or less―essentially an elevator pitch. This will be key when you inevitably start pitching investors and customers. They need to quickly and easily understand your idea and what it does. Think of it like a Twitter post. Can you describe your business in 140 characters?

Some examples include:

• Amazon: Buy anything online and have it shipped to
your door.

• eBay: Sell or buy anything online.

• Instagram: Instantly share photos with anyone
in the world. 

• Airbnb: Online vacation rental marketplace.

• Netflix: Instantly stream your favorite movies and TV shows. 


In one sentence or less, people will understand exactly what your business does and how they can benefit from it.




Second, don't be fooled by a false sense of security from friends and family. Sure, they may have told you your idea is great, but have they actually opened their wallet and put their money where their mouths are? If not, you need to run some preliminary market tests. For less than a few hundred dollars, this will not only confirm the success of your idea but save you loads of time and money down the road.

Crowdfunding websites, for example, are great places to market-test an idea. Setting up a crowdfunding page and then promoting it across your social media platforms to friends and family is a surefire way to test the concept. It doesn't have to be much, but if you are successful in raising the money, it means people have actually bought into your concept and are willing to pay for it. This success also looks great on your résumé when pitching bigger investors down the road. 




Finally, don't get sucked into the mesmerizing world of "likes" and followers. So many companies think that the more followers they have, the more product they will sell. This just isn't the case. Niche is the new big. Focus on servicing a niche market, and you'll naturally gain market share from surrounding groups. By trying to cater to everyone, you'll end up catering to no one. 

For example, Pepsi launched a major marketing campaign back in the early 2000s, focusing on young, hip, cool people. Naturally, 20-somethings aren't the only people who drink Pepsi, but they focused on this niche target market, and what happened? Sales went through the roof! Why? Because not only were the 20-somethings now drinking Pepsi because it was "cool," but they also captured the 40, 50 and 60-year-olds who wanted to feel like they were 20 again. By focusing on a single niche market, Pepsi was able to inadvertently capture traffic from peripheral markets.

Remember: niche is the new big. eBay, for example, started as a marketplace for people to trade beanie babies and memorabilia. We know how that turned out!