Many believe that starting up a business is a very mysterious process. They want to start a business but they do not know the first set of right steps to take. For lack of clear statistics, it will be fine to agree that hundreds of thousands of businesses are started year-in, year-out and for every person who finally exorcises the demons of entrepreneurship and takes the bold step to implement his/her idea, there are tens or hundreds who end up saying ‘okay I'm starting up this year’ and do not.
There will continue to be barrage of articles, exposés and editorials, as well as materials containing tips and hints which generally intimate us with the significance and subsequent consequence of being an entrepreneur, or at least knowing what it is to take the initiative to becoming an entrepreneur. As opposed to constantly hitting hard on a supposedly over-flogged topic, it would be appropriate to examine potential business concepts that may perhaps flourish in this day and time.
Here are eight ideas to consider when you are looking to start a business with relatively miniature capital:
Food delivery service– This is still somewhat alien to most Nigerian communities but it is a burgeoning idea nonetheless. This would be a good idea for those who stay around student areas or the few places which have a 24 hour economy. You could establish a partnership with local fast food vendors and/or restaurants. As you help in increasing their reach, you also provide a helpful service to inhabitants of the locality.
Group travel service– This would interest those who naturally have an affinity for exploring new destinations and planning trips - locally or internationally. You could start an organisationdedicated to bringing together and organising trips for groups of people; students for an excursion or holiday, workers for refresher courses, religious faithfuls for pilgrimage, sports aficionados for a competition or whatever other reasons people might have to require a trip.... Partnerships with already established travel agencies could help here too.
Photography and video services– Lucky you if any of these happen to be a hobby already. It means you would already have the equipment to enable you get established - at least on a small scale. You could start by covering events for family and friends, taking shots for posters and banners. If top quality is delivered with consistency, bigger jobs, more clients and finally breaking into the big time is inevitable.
Transportation service– This is somewhat capital-intensive, depending on how big one intends to invest in this idea. Once again, it is necessary to seek the help of those already higher on the ladder - seeking partnerships with large families, organisations; schools might be the key to a big break. You could be transporting kids and staff - to school and work or elsewhere. One could also establish affiliations with hotels and transport their customers to their various destinations which could range from places of business to the airport. Mode of transportation here obviously has to be better than what is generally obtainable.
Gadget repairs– Presently, it is practically impossible to exist in any society without gadgets - phones, tablets and even computers. Too many are remarkably skilled in hardware repairs, but passively exhibit this quality. One with such inclinations fused with little training [if need be] could consolidate on this and earn cool bucks from an innate gift. This could be done together with retail sales of parts and accessories of these gadgets and devices - it would help with 'keeping your customers in-house'.
Mobile boutique– This cuts across sex and status [student, worker]. If you constantly receive accolades and encomiums for your style, you might want to take this a step further. People often win over admirers andgroupiesfor their dress sense or general style. For the business savvy, you might want to translate this into income - by getting fashion items for sale to those who compliment you or have expressed appreciation and adoration for some of your clothes, shoes or accessories. Since you're accustomed to looking good, you already act as a walking billboard for your business.
Graphic design/typing services– This would most likely appeal to students and the unemployed bunch. For this, you would be needing only but a computer and a few softwares. Yes, creativity is a gift, but it can be developed if fondness is shown; the skill is learned and constantly honed. Your customer base would include students and to some extent - members of the working class who are constantly submitting papers, presentations as well as researches and reports.
Hair styling and grooming services– I'm sure you've come across one or two male hair stylists for females. No jokes on you now - I've come across a female barber. There were trust issues - as usual, but with time and proven trials people got more comfortable with their services. This is easier for females - as it is not so much work convincing co-female family members and friends. For guys, if you're a great barber - you'd probably have your hands full all the time. You can also include manicure and pedicure if you are adept at it.
The ideas above cut across different age groups, sexes and appeal to almost every circle. Regardless, never stop looking, never stop observing. There are always new ideas waiting to be exploited. More importantly, don't be too stringent in implementing business ideas, try to be flexible - adjust to the peculiarities of your vicinity and target customer base.
By Paterson Mgbeoji.