How To Come Up With A Big Idea
All businesses and products start with the Big Idea. It’s the ‘written on the back of a napkin’ idea, the one that keeps you up at night and gets your heart racing. For most people, the Big Idea happens upon them as an epiphany. In terms of inventing, as the old saying goes - necessity is the mother of all invention. Without realizing it, you’ve probably already created your own make shift inventions. Maybe you’ve used dental floss to tie your bra straps together so you can wear that racerback tank top, only to stumble across a Strap Perfect commercial days later (insert dramatic slap to the forehead). The point is, you’ve used products to do one thing when they were meant for another, or modified existing products to fill a need that wasn’t getting filled. These moments are areas of opportunity in which you can hatch your own Big Idea.
Here are 7 other ways to help you come up with your Big Idea:
1. Start asking friends and family or post to Facebook/Twitter, “What is the most annoying thing you have to deal with on a daily basis?” Use these answers to start a conversation with them about what would make that task easier and more enjoyable.
2. Think green. There are so many wasteful activities that we engage in everyday. Take a look around your house and determine what is the most wasteful, see if you can improve upon it.
3. Talk to little kids. Ask them to identify an object that you’ve given them, like a sparkplug or a teakettle. They will come up with the wackiest answers and might spark some creative thoughts.
4. People-watching can help identify areas of invention. After a few minutes of watching a young woman at a table decide where she should put her very expensive handbag, wouldn’t you love to hand her a purse hook? Well that’s exactly how it was invented.
5. Compartmentalize your household. Make a list of all of the rooms in your home and do some brainstorming in those areas. Garage, kitchen, living room, playroom, backyard, office, etc.
6. Take a close look at any hobbies you or your family love, is there any opportunity to create in those spaces? Maybe you are an avid runner and it sure would be great to have a water bottle that had a secret compartment to hold your keys and ID.
7. Think of specific groups and brainstorm around their needs – kids, women, couples, pets, etc.
Now that you’ve come up with a Big Idea, time to write your business plan!!