Simply Building Your Business

5 Tell Tale Signs of a Great Idea and how to make it work…


I have a saying  

‘I’d rather regret what I did than what I didn’t do’

Great Ideas are ten a penny.

It’s sad but it’s true.  I usually have several great ideas every day. The trick is in knowing which ones to pursue, which ones to save and which ones to ditch.

I reckon that best thing to do is ditch the lot, because if they are any good you’ll already be doing them. Michael Cheney agreed with me that ‘The Little Black Book of Great Ideas’  should be binned immediately!!  (You remember – the one I was banging on about a few months ago? Long gone now…)

So most of the ideas turn out to be crap, but they seemed great at the start. Many of my finest ideas occur at 3am when I am too sleepy to do anything about them. Like the time I invented a flying magnetic car when I was 7 years old. (More on that in another post on request!) That’s why I used to write them down.

So why don’t we take our great ideas to fruition?

Well, the fact is that most of the time we simply lack the resolve to make them happen, which is probably a really good thing.

Here are my seven reasons why we don’t fulfil our ideas…

  1. Somebody tells us we are nuts (peer pressure).
  2. We can’t afford the time, energy or money to try them out. (financial pressure)
  3. We lack confidence in our ability (bad parenting)
  4. We don’t have the technical knowledge (laziness to learn new stuff)
  5. We are full of fear because it’s never been done before (social conditioning)
  6. A better idea comes along (distracted mind – lack of discipline)
  7. We put it off to tomorrow which is never – (procrastination)

And these are my 5 essential elements to fulfilling an idea…

  1. The idea (obviously)
  2. A handle on Reality – does it do anything useful, and will people want it (pay for it)
  3. The Goal – the main reason why the idea is great (ie the problem it resolves and the solution it provides)
  4. Plan – How we will make it happen – investment (Time and Money resources)
  5. Action – When we will make it happen – (a Timeline to Completion)

Do you have a great idea?5clifffinal

Well – if it’s so great then why haven’t you done it yet?

The Royal Road to NEVER

I have a friend who designed a brilliant app. He spent months tweaking the awesome graphics and testing it out. He wasn’t going to release it until it was perfect. He went to a quiet place in Bali to work on it for a few months, and it cost him a fortune.

While he was away, a virtually identical app was developed and released and did the rounds. It wasn’t nearly as good as his, and had glitches and flaws in it. But it sold…

Does anybody want your idea?

When my friend finally got around to testing his app, there was zero interest. It was a real shame. He never researched who might buy it or if anyone actually needed it. Which is of course where you need to do right at the start.

Have you done your research?

You don’t open a high street store selling birdseed until you have checked

  1. Are there any hungry birds around?
  2. Are there any people in the area with £5 a week disposable income to spend on bird food?
  3. Does anyone else successfully sell bird seed? If there are other merchants in the area, then you should definitely open your store.
  4. How much do they charge for their seed, and can you source yours easily and still make a profit at less than the prices they are charging?

Tell people who you are, where you are and what you do

It truly amazes me how many people open a business and then sit in the shop waiting for customers who never arrive because they don’t know the store has opened and what it sells. I was in Bristol recently and I went in to a bike shop. The guy was texting on his mobile and ignored me for five minutes.

Most people would have left by then, but I stuck with it.

When we finally got talking, he said he had been open for 5 weeks and was amazed how few people were coming in to his store. So I asked him how his launch had gone…

“What launch?”

I asked about his advertising campaign and his local radio interviews


I asked him why he hadn’t said “Hi nice to see you…” when I walked in, and maybe “I’m on a call, I’ll be 2 minutes – please have a look around…”

You get the point?

Your idea may be great but who really gives a flying fig about what you have to say? 

Well, some people do, and THAT, my friend is what you have to find out, because it’s what marketing is all about. 

I can help you with that part. Get in touch and let me know your great idea, and together we can figure out a way to make it work.

My email address is, and it’s what I love doing.

You could also check out this Free Video from my mentor for some more basic ideas







  1. Brilliant post, Richard. I especially loved the analogy of the store owner on High Street. How can you sell anything if no one knows you’re there!

    • Hi Kimberly! So nice of you to drop by. There’s no difference between on and off line marketing – you still have to engage to get a good reputation. Well that’s what I think!
      Install CommentLuv on your blog so we can see your latest post and visit…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


CommentLuv badge