Entrepreneurs are always thinking one step ahead, always trying to come up with the next brilliant business idea that is going to propel them into entrepreneurial stardom, and a lifetime of success. When that idea comes, be careful not to get so excited by the prospect of future success that you forget to do your research.
It’s easy to get caught up in the fantasy. When you are in that moment when everything clicks, and a business idea pops into your head clear as day, it’s a powerful thing! You can feel it in your gut, this is the idea you’ve been waiting for, this is the one that’s going to revolutionize the world! You tell anyone who will listen, you are passionate, animated, engaging. You have taken your business idea, and you’re running with it full steam ahead.
Conduct Market Research for Your Business Idea
But, slow down there, Roadrunner! There’s a brick wall coming up ahead, and written on that wall is “Market Research”. Before your idea becomes a business, you need statistics and analysis. You need to know who your target audience is, and you need to know what they want, need, feel, and think. You need to get inside the heads of your customers, as well as the heads of your competition. Leave no stone unturned when it comes to researching your potential market.
You need to find out if your business idea meets the needs of the times. Don’t lose sight of your objective, and don’t get ahead of yourself. Find out if your enterprise is viable BEFORE you spend more time and money on trivial tasks. Go out and meet your target customers, talk to industry professionals and associates, use your network. Take advantage of everything you can learn about potential clients. Listen to them!
Research Your Customers, and Your Competition
With social media, the old school methods of gathering data and statistics are just that, old! Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, etc., have given entrepreneurs a quick and easy way to reach out to their customers. Simply ask your social media network, do a little polling. Everyone loves a good poll. Most people have followers from all necks of the woods and it’s the fastest way for entrepreneurs to test their idea and gain some insight into the habits of their customers. At the very least, sit down and do a thorough Google search, or go and support your local library and read a good old-fashioned newspaper or industry magazine. A few hours of market research is invaluable to any entrepreneur with a business idea. This is where you fine tune your product or service before moving on to the next step.
Not saying you won’t need the full market strategy that the professionals can provide you. Analysis of data is still vital. But there is much you can do before you even get to that point, that possibly will require a significant inve$tment.
Next week, how to do a proper analysis of your business idea.