Ways to Make Money – Live Outside of the Box
I can tell you that one of the best ways to make money is by creating an unconventional product or service which satisfies a hungry market. Unfortunately, the lack of creativity is what I notice most frequently in online business. Most websites which market a product or service have a generic look and feel.
Do you remember the dot com boom? Well, when the dot com boom was really booming, people knew that they had to come up with the next new thing to even have a chance at success. Being innovative was primary, and practical business sense came somewhere later on. Just think, the Internet was relatively new. If someone could invent something on the Internet which could made something which we use frequently more accessible, they would stand to make millions, if not billions of dollars. If you think that I am exaggerating, just hop on one of the search engines and type in the name, “Mark Cuban”. Mark Cuban is a dot com billionaire. He became a billionaire by selling his idea for Internet radio, and now can be seen court side at Dallas Maverick games, seeing that he used some of his well deserved money to buy the team.
Ten to twelve years ago, it is not simply okay to have any old site. Rather, you had to stand out. Of course, this often leads to more flash than substance, which I believe contributed to the dot com fall.
Now I have an exercise for you to take on. I want you to turn off your computer monitor, and problem-solve. Think of new and innovative ways to make money. You have the facts on your side. Unlike entrepreneurs in the past, you know that success is highly possible on the Internet. New creations keep on coming via the Internet. Just look at the most recent stars, Twitter and Facebook. Can you believe that both of these websites were actually criticized for breaking tradition. Who do you think has the last laugh.
The thing about the Internet as it sits today, is that it is perpetually in puberty. It is continues to grow at an exponential rate. Last count, there were in excess of 40 billion websites on the Internet, but that number may change by the time I have finished writing this article, so do not hold me to that number. Nonetheless, you cannot just add your one or two websites to this portal, and think that anyone is going to pay attention. You have to identify a market niche which has a need, and give them the solution to their need. Take Twitter, for example. Twitter takes care of the need to streamline information to a vast array of individuals in an instant. Twitter was able to identify a niche in online communication, and provided a solution to the needs of this niche.
If we were to go back to the Walt Disney era, we will realize that there is a historic tendency to mock ingenuity. For instance, Walt Disney, the creator of Disneyland had a vision. This vision stemmed by his unconventional mode of thought which people around him were familiar. However, similar to Facebook and Twitter, Mr. Disney was actually mocked and ridiculed for his Disneyland idea. The sad thing is that this is common among geniuses. Just look at the times when people stated that the earth may be round. They were charged with heresy. Similarly, before giving it a chance, Disneyland was coined by the press as “Disney’s Folly”. The funny thing is that now we all know that the earth is round, and that Disneyland was such a huge success that it spun off into Disney World, and others.
One thing that you have to prepare yourself for when you step outside of the normal mode of thought, is ridicule. Let us go back to the year of 1996. Back then, the Internet was quite new. Now, picture yourself having come up with a plan to create an Internet business which will garner its success from giving everything away for free. How do you think people would have responded to you if you had proposed that idea. Perhaps a few would think that you ought to be institutionalized.
Do you know what is funny? A company actually developed a business with the plan to give everything away for free, and went through with that plan. The company is Hotmail. Hotmail gave their e-mail platform aways for free in an era where in order to have an email account you either needed to be a student, been employed by a cutting edge employer, or paid out of pocket. Hotmail was the very first company to give away free email accounts. This is often forgotten.
What Hotmail was doing, was identifying a target market which would generate a fortune for them in the future. They took what was know and accepted as a paid service, made it better, and gave it away for free. Because of Hotmail, it became easy to check your email from anywhere in the world with an Internet connection. This was not the norm back them. Shortly after, Hotmail was able to generate income by selling ads, and eventually got the big payday when they were purchased by Microsoft.
The notion of identifying a paid for service, and giving it away for free is alive and well. However, if you want to share the same type of success as Facebook, Twitter, and Hotmail, it is likely that you will need to do more than merely copy what they have done. Of course, that something is the question which needs to be answered. Whoever can answer this question will have discovered ways to make money in the millions, or even billions.