Ok so you want to start developing an online course or business, so what’s your idea? Do you have an idea? Not to sound cliche, but “do what you love”? That is so messed up! You may say “there is nothing that I love to do that anyone will buy”.
Really? I think you have hidden talents not yet tapped, all we need to do is bring them out, I call this “Idea Fracking”.
Now this is like digging in the backyard as a kid, you never know what hidden treasure you will find.
1) Step Clear your Mind (Listening Session)
Ok this is no Jedi Mind trick or maybe it is and you have fallen for it. Nope, this is simply just being quite, shutting off your mind.
Yeah, easier said the done. You may say “I thought we were going to make an online course, I am ready” or “I have my business idea lets go”.
Slow down speedy, I know as an ambitious entrepreneur the last thing you want to do is to be still, but I am telling you, being still is like a reset for your brain.
For me as a Christain, I pray, it allows me to be still and focus on others as opposed to my life and my circumstances.
Then I just listen. Now the first time you do this your mind is going to go crazy because it is not used to being still. For most of you, the only time your mind is still is when you’re asleep so this may be as difficult as herding cats.
However, if you just be still in listen, you will have multiple ideas by the idea of the week. If you already have an idea, this sometimes will awaken others thoughts about that idea that you never even thought of. How long should I be still?
Well, that is up to you. I do 30 to 45 minutes in the morning and I recommend having a notebook just for your listening session to write down your initial ideas.
2) What do other people say about you?
You know this should be a given, but most of the times it is missed by us. We need to listen to people around us because they may see things we overlooked. Some people may say “Wow you are amazing story teller” or “Your jokes made me wet my pants”.
Maybe your friends introduce you as the “Negotiator” because of how well you negotiate with sales people or your the “math wiz” to your friends because or your knack with numbers.
These may be hidden from you but I need for you take note of these conversations because they can be valuable in coming up with your ideas.
3) Search and Rescue
Oh no, we have an idea that is lost at sea and we need to retrieve it. Ok maybe this is overkill but the best place to look for ideas is on the web. The best places to look are Amazon, REDDIT, Quora, Firespotting and forums related to your niche.
You may say “How is this going to help”? People leave reviews of products on Amazon, so depending on what you are looking for, you can search the reviews. This will give you an idea if people are interested in the topic and the pains that are having with that product.
NOTE: I tend to look for people that leave 2 to 4 stars because you never know who is leaving the reviews. If it is someone who is selling the product as an affiliate they may bump up the review to 5 stars. Or if it is a competitor they leave a bad review of 1.
Ok so REDDIT can be intimidating if you have never been here before. It doesn’t look like any other site that you have been to, their slogan is “This is the front page of the internet”.
Now there are millions of people that use REDDIT, most do not post, but the ones that do give you a wealth of knowledge on the subject that you are looking for. Look for people complaining about a topic that you have in mind and see what their problem is and find the solution.
Quora is a great place to find ideas. This site is all about people asking questions about different subjects, like “What is the purpose of Arwen’s character in the Lord of the Rings?” to “Why do some business startup fail?”.
Look for people asking the questions and notice the answers that other people give, this alone should spark your brain into action. Once you have found the pain go back to step 1 and listen.
Ok I just found this site. Looks like people upload their ideas for the day. Should be able to find some gems in here to make you brain sizzle!
4) What is your burning pain with a particular product?
Now this might not be your passion but you could look around your house and find everyday products that could be made better. Take a look at this link from Pat Flyn’s Podcast Episode 126 about Stephen Key.
Okay this guy is a genius, have you ever heard of the Teddy Ruxpin bear, or perhaps Lazer Tag? So he came up these ideas and never had a prototype, he just sold the idea. Brilliant!
5) Ask Burning Questions
The best way to find an idea that needs a solution, is to ask people “what is your burning pain in your life right now”? I mean it doesn’t get any simpler than that. Most people can tell you what they hate a lot easier than what they like.
I have 3 daughters and every day I ask them, “So how was your day?”, most of the time they say “good”, but if something bad happened I get an ear full! So talk to people in the niche that you want to head into and ask them “What frustrates you about your job?”, “What disappoints you about this product?” or “What do you hate about blind dates?”.
Trust me if they hate something you will get an ear full as well.
Try these techniques and let me know the results. If you have other ideas on how to become an “Idea Magnet” please share.
So once you have an idea where do you go from here. Please click the “Validating My Idea” post, this is where we will find out if our ideas will take flight or fall like a Led Zepplin, “Ramble On” dudes.