Business start up ideas
April 10, 2012 10:05 PM   Subscribe

New Business Ideas and what to do with them

I usually have a few good business ideas that pertain to my field (online advertising). I later find out that those are then introduced by others and they end up making a lot of money out of those. All good as I am not that much into establishing huge businesses and all that stress that comes with it. (If it matters, I have over 7 years experience in the online media world and have worked with one of the big 3 for a long time)

My aim is to sell the idea to ..well that is what I am not sure about. I am sure these would make some great start up ideas for those who have the time, inclination, money and ambition to run these start ups.

Any thoughts on what to do with these ideas and how and whom do people sell it to?
posted by pakora1 to Work & Money (7 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite was one of a thousand different attempts at a social photo sharing site/app, and the only one to get bought by Facebook for a billion dollars. And that doesn't count the scores of others who had "ideas" for social photo sharing apps/sites and never acted on them.

Ideas are a dime a dozen. Facebook paid money for because they actually built something people liked. Your ideas aren't worth any money. A million other people have already thought of them.
posted by tylerkaraszewski at 10:28 PM on April 10, 2012 [2 favorites]

From Paul Graham's Ideas for Startups:
Actually, startup ideas are not million dollar ideas, and here's an experiment you can try to prove it: just try to sell one. Nothing evolves faster than markets. The fact that there's no market for startup ideas suggests there's no demand. Which means, in the narrow sense of the word, that startup ideas are worthless.
As you have noticed, other people are having the same ideas you have. The ones that turn them in to something more than ideas are the those that choose to do the hard work and are willing to take on "all that stress that comes with it".
posted by AaRdVarK at 10:35 PM on April 10, 2012 [6 favorites]

Have you heard the phrase: ideas are cheap? It's because they are. Ideas are nothing without follow-through. Only hard work and capital (typically) can turn an idea into a money-making venture. Here's my advice. Cultivate a network of interesting people. Share your ideas. Set them free. Maybe one of them will inspire you to follow through. Or perhaps you'll meet someone who wants to partner up. You never know.
posted by amanda at 10:36 PM on April 10, 2012 [2 favorites]

Hey pakora1, I am currently at an online advertising/ media startup (it's been a few years), I'll MeMail you. I've learned that contacts are very important (as you already know), as it is about who will buy your product/ service.

Like others said, actualizing the idea is the difficult part. Along with that, how do you picture people using your product? Who will use them? The people are already out there, and there are ways to identify them (which is a service itself).
posted by ichomp at 10:45 PM on April 10, 2012

I think you need to either do it yourself or get out of the way for somebody else who had the same idea and hopes to do it sooner, better and for more money. "Do it yourself" often means hire contractors to do it for you, and is less intimidating than it may sound, depending on the type of idea.
posted by croutonsupafreak at 12:03 AM on April 11, 2012

1) Ideas are easy, execution is hard.

2) For VC investors, it's 20% idea and 80% team, since the team is the one executing.

3) All good as I am not that much into establishing huge businesses and all that stress that comes with it.

If you don't want to grow/scale a business, you have a lifestyle business on your hands. If that is the case, it will be hard to attract significant interest.

All that being said, what you can sell is a functioning business. You don't have to build it into a Google or an Apple. The next step in what you want to do is serial entrepreneurship. You start a business, build revenues, and sell it on.

The problem with ideas is how do you know if they work? They may or may not, and that's a very hard sell without a track-record. Once there is a market and proven viability via revenues, you can begin thinking about selling.

If you're not the entrepreneur, you can be the ideas man if you are linked up with someone that can execute.
posted by nickrussell at 4:53 AM on April 11, 2012 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Thanks. Let me clarify as it seems like your understanding was that I have only "ideas"

I work for a large online media site. My ideas, as i loosely named them, are actually business ideas derived from the advertisers I work with every day. I am very well aware of what they want and have had several thoughts which could be turned into businesses themselves. As a product marketer I have quite aware of the nuts and bolts of bringing products to market. Instagram? Already thought of that whilst I was working on image uploads for an advertising campaign. Data? Have couple of thoughts on how that could be harnessed effectively for online businesses (i have worked with leading data providers as my vendor)

My ask was more to what nickrussel replied. How to get this idea into a small running business and then sell it off. So what I want to do is create a start up to the point where I show enough financial value and then let some giant gobble it up. The fastest way to do it with all the legal stuff in place.

So the ask is around the logistics-where to start, what legalities are involved, who do I hire, when and where is the hub of VC (Besides NY/CA?).
posted by pakora1 at 9:14 AM on April 11, 2012

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