Entrepreneurs have long transformed opportunities and ideas into profit-gaining ventures, but the notion that you must have capital to thrive in your chosen business has potentially become outdated.
Today, an entrepreneur fills gaps by solving a problem, providing a service or making lives easier. All this happens through an entrepreneurial spirit that demands a keen-eye to identify an opportunity, an action-oriented mindset to make decisions, and a clear sense of direction to strategize the idea.
Entrepreneurs often struggle to obtain capital investments, and in a competitive startup world, trying to make money with just an idea and no capital may be daunting. But if you are motivated, passionate and have the right set of soft skills to create something, you just need to hit the right opportunity at the right time.
Here are five steps on how to create a profound business endeavor with no capital investment.
Start with self-evaluation
To start a business, you need to first ask yourself: why? A thorough self-evaluation requires you to ask yourself several questions, such as: What kind of skills do you have? How much experience do you have for the business you want to create? What is your passion? What kind of lifestyle do you fantasize about? How much time can you spare for this venture?
To get through the evaluation process with an actionable strategy, you need to answer with absolute honesty. This will serve as a foundation for your future plans towards creating something of value, not just for yourself but also for your intended customers.
Carry out market research
For every opportunity, there is an existing pool of competitors that are selling a similar idea, so you must undertake in-depth analysis to figure out your rivals’ execution strategy and what you have to offer that’s different.
To make this more actionable, start by breaking down the objectives of your research and the methods you need to adopt to get the information you need. One approach would be reaching out to your targeted customers and asking them questions such as “why do you consume this service/product?” or “what improvements would you suggest in this market?” Once you have answers, trace down the similarities and start creating a plan that fills the loopholes.
Go for a “lean startup approach”
The “lean startup approach” is a methodology that replaces traditional business strategy involving extensive planning, intuitions, and up-front product development, with prototyping (pitching your product), experimenting (obtaining feedback) and pivoting (work on the feedback you have obtained and make improvements).
Develop a business plan
A business plan provides a roadmap by figuring out the starting line and evolving towards the end product. Researching market requirements and identifying your intended audience will help you craft an actionable business plan. There are some basic steps you need to consider.
Give your idea a name and identify a “why now” factor. Describe your business structure: What does your business look like and what are the future prospects? What industry are you hitting? Mention potential competitors and your analysis on the market. Based on your analysis, provide a product and service requirement with a day-to-day approach. Consider your incoming and outgoing finances and budget allocation.
Build a team and go “all-out”
The division of labor allocates responsibility and builds a network of people incorporating diverse skills. It is important for an entrepreneur to build a team that visualizes the proposed idea the same way they do and is ready to dedicate its time to create a difference.
Capital becomes secondary when you have the right planning, skills and labor at home.