How many of you have thought about an ingenious idea that you know would make millions of dollars? Then how many of you have walked into a store a few months later only to find someone had stolen your idea?
We all know that an idea doesn’t manifest itself into reality without you taking action. It might sound like a 1980’s motivational quote but taking action is where you need to begin. So how do you turn your idea into a reality? Here are some simple steps that will help if you have no idea where to start.
- The Idea. Ask yourself does your idea keep you up at night? Does it fill you with excitement with the possibilities it may bring. If it feels like a chore that you have to do research into your idea – then find another idea.
- Research It. Know your idea in and out. It’s competitors, how you can market it, who would buy it. Write it down, type it up, sketch it out or even create a business plan. You need to collect as much information as possible to know what you need to do to get it happening.
- Network It. If you have no experience in the field of your idea – go out and find a friend, mentor or acquaintance that is an expert in that field. Shout them a coffee, brainstorm, exchange ideas and learn. This will give you a better insight into the amount of work or dedication you need to get your idea off the ground.
- Find a Partner. Ideas are just ideas until you start taking even the smallest step towards reaching that goal. Find a friend, mentor or ask your partner who encourages you and supports you. Then ask them to be your accountability partner. What this means is that they will hold you accountable for your action goal plan. You can even make it fun and see if you can use www.stickk.com so you can hold yourself accountable and stick to your goals in front of your friends and family.
- Set a Deadline. Without a hard set deadline, your excuses can keep piling up and your idea will remain in limbo. Set a date, tell anyone who cares and work towards it. Make sure it’s an achievable timeframe that will keep you motivated to reach your goal. A great idea is even to start pre-selling your product before it’s completely finished, not only will it give you cashflow into the business but it will definitely make sure that you reach your goal.
These were the steps that we used to create the “Hatch That Dream” cookbook. After approaching several publishers (about 15!) and getting rejected, we decided that we would self-publish. With no prior knowledge or understanding of how the publishing world worked, we used the steps above and also told the world that we were releasing a cookbook! Within a short 18 hours of releasing an option to pre-order our cookbook we had sold out our 100 copies that we needed to express print to meet our deadline. We now have a long waiting list for the next shipment of books that are due to arrive in May.
So what’s next? We’re taking on the Food Truck craze and perhaps our own TV series (and if we can’t get signed, we might create our own series on YouTube). Anything is possible, you just need to take action.
Sheryl Thai is the founder of Cupcake Central