Do you remember the first time you thought, "Hey, I want to start my own business!"? The excitement, the passion... And then came the big question: "But what business should I start?"
Well, my fellow entrepreneur, if you're looking for a unique, passion-driven, experience-based answer to that question, you're in the right place. Say goodbye to the generic lists and advice the Internet gives you – welcome to the world of custom business ideas.
In this post, we'll dive into the importance of building a business that’s unique to you and explore the benefits and challenges of using AI in the idea generation process. My hope is to guide you towards the perfect business idea for you to be successful in.
Starting and growing a business is a marathon, not a sprint. To stay the course through the ups and downs, it's crucial that your business aligns with your passions and experiences. Why? Because passion fuels perseverance and differentiation in your business. And your unique experiences are the spark that leads to novel ideas that can change the world (or at least change your bank account balance...upwards...eventually).
Jeff (one of the co-founders of my prior business) and I would often remark on the “roller-coaster” of the startup world. One day you’re “high” on a newly-closed deal or positive customer feedback, the next day you’re “low” on a competitor’s press-release or a “no” from an investor. You need passion, relevant experience, and other aligning factors to survive leading your company through those ups and downs.
If you instead build an idea that just sounds good, for example one you found on a “Top 23 business ideas for 2023” list, you won’t have the endurance to get through the roller-coaster during those low points. Generic idea lists like that can be great inspiration, but be sure that you apply them to your life, personality, and attitude to end up with an idea you’ll thrive in.
Enter Artificial Intelligence (AI). AI has become an amazing tool and also a crazy buzzword. I encourage you to use it when starting your business (I've used it in many ways working on CompanyCraft!). However, know that when it comes to generating business ideas, tools like ChatGPT have lots of limits and challenges.
I’ve tried using ChatGPT to help brainstorm ideas. After a long session of careful prompting you can definitely get an interesting list of ideas from it that are relevant to you. One big strength is that it can think far “outside the box”, creating really unique ideas. However, those ideas exist within a pretty thin context, and they’re hard to collaborate with it on. It’s similar to chatting with a friend, yea you two can bounce business ideas back and forth, but you need a rigorous framework to analyze them within to make progress. That framework and “system” around your ideas is what will give you the needed confidence and perspective to take next steps towards launching.
That's where CompanyCraft comes in. We've taken the concept of AI-powered business ideation and tailored it to meet the specific needs of aspiring entrepreneurs like you. You create a detailed profile in the CompanyCraft app, including your passions, skills, and experiences. We use carefully-crafted questions to help you think through aspects of yourself and your life that will pull out needed info. Then, based on that data, our AI generates custom business ideas unique to who you are and what you’ll be successful in.
But we didn't stop there. CompanyCraft also empowers you to organize, research, filter, and prioritize those ideas, all with the help of AI. This takes you from a list of awesome ideas all the way to your ideal business to launch and be successful in.
To explore using AI to generate business ideas, let's consider Satya Nadella. You probably know him as Microsoft’s CEO, but hey, maybe he wants to make some extra income on the side. He loves the game of cricket, has extensive business leadership experience, enjoys collaborating with teams, has deep passion for technology, wants to impact the world, and more. We’ll use this and other data that we can find publicly about him for this experiment.
Satya will start a chat with ChatGPT to generate some ideas.He’ll even get it to help figure out what context is valuable by prompting it to interview him.
You can see that it came up with some relevant ideas, but they’re fairly broad and a bit generic:
With lots of back-and-forth, these generic ideas could get more detailed and customized to Satya's personal views, experiences, etc. However, the generic nature of them probably makes Satya question if this is a good approach, since he's not sure if he can trust the results to be something he'd be successful in. Plus, the chat-based approach can be time-consuming, frustrating, and will eventually lose the earlier context as the chat gets longer.
Now Satya tries CompanyCraft. He spends 5 minutes entering some detailed profile information about himself.
After he finishes some of his profile, Satya tries out the idea generation. CompanyCraft generates 10 business ideas, each aligning with his interests and experiences.
After those first 10 ideas, Satya provides some quick "gut-feel" input to the AI, clicking buttons to tell it what he likes, dislikes, or wants variants of.
After this brief feedback CompanyCraft generates a new list of ideas, in real-time.
This convenient and collaborative idea generation is a massive speed-up for any entrepreneur who needs to answer that “what to build” question. Once you (or Satya) have a strong list of custom ideas that you resonate with, you can then use CompanyCraft’s research and filtering tools to narrow them down. This will bring you to an optimized short-list to consider executing on.
The journey to discovering your ideal business idea doesn't have to be fraught with frustration and generic advice. With the right tools, you can uncover an idea that's uniquely yours, which will set you up for success.
With AI revolutionizing the way we do business, tools like CompanyCraft are key to capturing the power and efficiency that AI offers as you start your venture. So, whether you're a first-time founder or you have deep experience, try our platform to generate your custom ideas and see what comes of it. Generating ideas and most other features are free! Click here to get started.