Eric Sink has a good piece on how to come up with a new business idea. To summarize he makes the following points:
- Avoiding competition altogether is usually not a good strategy for getting a business going. The big problem with avoiding competition is that you are also avoiding customers.
- Money is made by beating competition, not by avoiding it.
- Look for someone who is serving real customers but not doing it very well. Find a way to do it better.
- The best approach is to find a competitor who is "big and dumb".
- Choose a "big and smart" or "small and smart" partner.
- Choose a fragmented market, that is a market shared by a reasonably large number of players, all of whom are functioning profitably.
- In at least one important way, be different.
Okay, I've got to admit, he's building a .NET product, however he's redeemed by having his server product built using Java. Also, it's not too bad if at the same time he's taking revenue away from Microsoft.
This is a good read indeed…have a look…