The Myth of Finding Your Perfect Idea
In the world of entrepreneurship there is a similar and misinformed conception of The Perfect Idea, The Ultimate Idea, The Magic Bullet, The Silver Bullet, call it what you will, but it’s the idea that there is one special thing and if only you can find this one special thing then everything else will magically fall into place.
Reality: That’s a Big Fat Myth
You think you need the Perfect Idea, but what you really need is an idea that is good enough.
Good enough? Yes, GOOD enough.
Do something that you can move forward. Do something that you can get traction with. Do something that your audience wants. Do something that you can SELL.
A good enough idea is better than chasing the ultimate, Perfect Idea and not doing anything at all.
More than 99% of people spend wasted time and energy chasing after this Perfect Idea. They search for ideas and pick up one and say, “This could work.” They chase it. Then they drop it. Then go find another one. Run with it for awhile. Then they drop it. Fast forward, 3, 6, 9 months down the road and all they have ever done is been in the process of looking at ideas, thinking about things but they never actually do anything.
They think if they find that one Perfect Idea, everything else, all their other problems, will just vanish.
It’s like shopping all the time, but you never can quite make that purchase.
When you are creating an online course, the first time around it’s not going to be perfect. No matter what you do, it’s never going to be perfect. The only way to not make a mistake is to never do anything.
If you never do anything, you never make a mistake – You Are Perfect.
Rather than searching for the Perfect Idea, you are better off finding a Good Enough Idea.
It’s best to find something that:
- Your audience is willing to pay for;
- That you are an expert on;
- That meets your audience’s needs – don’t try and teach, ‘How To Teach a Goldfish to Sing’;
- If you have business people – teach a course on ‘Excel Skills For Business People’;
- If you have moms – teach, ‘Six Weeks of Meal Plans For A Busy Mom.’
You are better off creating something that your audience wants. Something that your audience needs. Then, go with that.
Get some experience.
And then come back with a second product and spend more time making the second product a big idea product. Or, just another solid idea product.
In order to find out what your audience wants – you ultimately need to ask them.
But you can’t just outright ask them, “What do you want?”
That’s like saying, “Where do you want to go to eat?” How many times have you said, “Where do you want to go to eat?” And then you spend 10 minutes discussing where to go to eat – going around in circles – the conversation goes something like this; “I don’t know, where do you want to go?” “Well I don’t know.” “What about Mexican food?” “I’m not really feeling Mexican tonight. What about some Italian?” “No…we had Italian last week.”
You spend all this time discussing where you want to go, rather than just starting off the conversation with, “Hey, do you want to go out for Italian? Do you want to go out for pizza? Do you want a steak? Do you want Mexican?” Now you’ve got a menu of four choices – it makes it super easy to choose rather than having no destination, no goal and just having wide open space.
The best way to talk to your audience and to find out what they want is through surveys. You really want to know enough about your audience to be able to guess what they’re going to say and then give them a multiple-choice survey, “Hey, what do you want for dinner tonight? A, B, C, D?” And put E as “other”.
Don’t be afraid to go in-depth with your questions:
- Why is this important to you?
- What would you do IF this problem was solved?
- What’s your biggest business challenge?
- What’s the hardest thing about having two kids?
Ask controversial questions, questions that make people think. Questions that make people really get it.
Keep your survey to 10 questions or less – ideally 5. Wrapping up your survey, ask for their email address and permission to contact them with follow-up questions, if need be.
Ultimately, you want to do a chain of surveys.
You want to survey people once. Categorize the surveys. Find everybody that loves cats. Find everybody that loves dogs. Find the fish people. So now you’ve got: cat people, dog people and fish people.
Now, follow-up with your cat people.
Ask more in-depth questions:
- Where does your cat sleep at night?
- Does your cat claw the furniture?
- What’s the biggest problem with training your cat?
- Does it beg for food?
- Does it try and sneak outside all the time?
- Does it beat up your dog?
Continuing with your chain:
- How would you like it different if XYZ?
- Why is it important for you to solve this problem?
Based upon the answers you get, you begin to get more information about your customers. Now you can understand what their pain points are and what triggers them.
Check out the following Summit Evergreen article, ‘The Must Have Feedback Tool No Course Should Be Without.’ It will help you to understand the importance of assessing your audience and how to do it effectively.
Now you can create your product based upon your simple survey.
Isn’t that much easier than searching for the one magical, mystical idea – ‘How To Have The Best Kitten Ever!!’
Now you can create a small piece that is Good Enough about, ‘How to Make Sure Your Kitty Always Goes In the Litterbox.’
Let’s say that you are solving a specific problem – now, of course, that won’t be a high priced course, but it will get you from the idea about thinking of creating a course to actually creating a course. You have stopped searching and are now doing.
This will produce something that you are marketing and selling – and then you can learn the skills on anything to do this well – because you need to do it more than once. You go through this process and every time you launch something you are progressively getting better.
The goal isn’t necessarily to find the magical, mystical, Perfect Idea – it’s more to find a SOLID idea and then take that through the process.
Conduct the survey. Understand what it is. Create your course based upon that. Offer the course to your audience.
Have no fear.
If you only get a few sales, your world is not going to end.
Your biggest accomplishment at creating your first goal is actually having your first course done, so that it’s not as large of a hurdle to create your second course.