Effectively Materialising your ideas Ideas in the digital age is easier and cheaper.We have access to so many platforms that weren’t there about 15 years ago. I am going to highlight two ways by which you can materialise your ideas based on resources,time & money.
Initially, if you had an idea and wanted to turn it into a project you wouls need to find investors. Not just any investors but the ones who were really passionate about your idea. This was difficult to come by and so companies took money from people who offered money and weren’t that passionate about their idea. It happens even today. I see a lot of Start-ups in desperate need of money and take it from people who just offer it up to them. The reason why the investor makes a big difference is because of this : If the investor is passionate about your idea he will ask you at every step of the way about how you are investing it and he will contribute to it. This would ensure a good working relationship between the two of you.
Big brands that have resources, time and money are well-established and can afford to have their own innovation team and if necessary buy another company. I know two ways by which you can materialise your ideas in the digital age.
The first one is that you should partner up with an online educational platform and submit your idea as a project to be offered at the end of the course. It would be better if it is a paid course as you would receive a percentage of the payment. The important thing here is that when you offer it as a part of a project at the end of a course you are telling people that this is an issue that your company is facing and how would you as a participant be able to help this company solve its problem.
Let me elaborate:
You have a startup and do not have enough resources to invest in a new idea. You have a little bit of time and money. The wise thing would be is to partner up with an online educational platform and offer your project at the end of a course. Now this would look like taking advantage of the people executing this project for you. I would suggest that the handful of people who actually execute it well should be offered the job or a paid internship at the end. This would suggest that you are not just a company looking to get work done for free but also that you mean business.
There are two platforms that I personally like. They are ‘Coursera‘ and ‘edX‘. I recently did a specialisation on Coursera related to digital marketing. My final project was titled “Digital Marketing and channel strategy aimed at improving the sale of Bosch power tools on Grainger.com by 10%“. As this was the case presented to us and each participant was free to use any tools at his disposal to come up with ideas on how to improve on this.
It was an 8-month course but at the end of the day, I did get to interact with experienced people who had great ideas which were selected and reviewed by Bosch. Look at it from Bosch’s perspective, they gain a lot of insights and there was a reward for the top 10 ideas that would be selected.
Here is a gist of what it was about. Bosch was seeing declining sales and hence to get a new perspective about their problem they opened it up to an audience interested in the field. We had an online video conference with the head of digital marketing at Bosch to get a better understanding of the issue. So as you see Bosch got a few ideas and I, in turn, got an opportunity to work on a real time project. Beneficial for both as you see.
So, partnering up with an educational provider helps you target the right people to help solve your problem and gives you access to the right talent if you decide to hire. This I believe is one of the most effective ways to engage with the right audience and get the ball rolling for your idea.
Here are the links to both these websites if you want to know more.
- Submitting your Idea
Submitting your idea on a platform that encourages new thoughts is the second way. Kickstarter is the world’s largest funding platform for creative projects. If people like the project, they can pledge money to make it happen. If the project succeeds in reaching its funding goal, all backers’ credit cards are charged when time expires. If the project falls short, no one is charged. This is basically what Kickstarter is all about. Imagine how easy it is. If you aren’t able to capitalise on the first method I proposed this should surely prove fruitful.
This is a crowdfunding platform for gathering money from people who believe in your idea.
Here’s a link to the website.
Just imagine, all you need to do is get your idea onto a piece of paper,formulate it and make it presentable and submit it there. You can decide what amount of funding it requires and also explains in detail what it is all about. This would actually tell you if the people who invest actually like your idea. Please do remember that not all the ideas get the required funding.
In order to get featured on Kickstarter, you just have to follow a few simple steps. I have shared the link below if you think your idea needs funding.
They have had so many successful projects including the pebble smart watch. This is a place where serious investors come and take a look at your projects and decide whether to invest or not. I did pledge on a project which reached its goal within the given timeframe and as a guy who pledged got it for half the price. So as you can see those people who invest also reap the benefits and are also the first ones to receive the product.
I have first-hand experience in seeing how these things work and how it creates positive engagement between brands and their audience. The advantages are
- You don’t have to do market research to find your audience.
- You don’t have to hire new resources for executing your idea.
- You get to have a good understand of your audience and get proper insights into what troubles them.
It does not cost you a lot when you fail here plus you can take bigger risks.The upside to all of this is if you fail the first time you will definitely get most of it right the next time as you would not end up making the basic mistakes plus you have the added advantage of knowing your audience and that is saying something in today’s digital age.