Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Thinking Of Starting New Business? Think Crazy To Succeed!

With economy tanking and growing debts, more and more people turn online in hopes of making extra income. And the first question they ask themselves - what is my site going to sell? Coming up with a working idea may be quite difficult, so here are five inspirational examples when successful online businesses where launched by thinking out of the box. So don't bee afraid to think silly, wacky or unusual.


Living in 'da hood' is bad enough, and surely no one, other than drug addicts, would want to go there. This is what regular people think, but Alfred Lomas is not regular person. After all, he is a felon, drug dealer and former gang member. Realizing that there people who are fascinated by the underworld. So he started a two hour South Central bus 'gang tour' visiting most prominent gang sites and telling the history behind them. He wisely turned online to promote his business and now charges $65 each person who wants to go on the tour.


Good domain name is extermely important, but it seems that all the good ones are already taken. Buying a name on the aftermarket ususally costs thosands, so Dmitry Davydov sensed that this problem offers a great business opportunity. He launched a risk free naming agency with a simple proposition - you deposit $50 and he'll come up with a great domain name for you. If you don't like any suggestions and decide not to use them, you get your money back. The service was launched in 2007 and Dmitry was so overwhelemed with requests, he could not complete all the orders himself. So now over 46000 people have signed up as contributors who get paid for their suggestions and after successfully coming up with over 1500 domains, the service has branched out into slogans, product lines and software naming.


Living is a small country of Estonia, Pavel Sidorenko was limited in money-making opportunities. But being a designer by trade, thinking outside the box was part of his nature. So when he has stumbled upon thousands of unwanted vinyl records, he immediately decided to do something with it. The result - vinyl record wall clocks that is known for now worldwide and sells for $40-$50 each from his website mosly outside his native Estonia.


We tend to think of phone pranks as juvenile, but it's a $2.5 million a year business for Jeffrey Goldblatt, HumorHotLines founder. He stumbled into the idea in 2001, after getting tired of hearing same trashy pickup lines and putdowns. This is when he started Rejection Hotline -a phone number ladies gave out to pursuers, that led them to this voice mail: "Hello, the person who gave you this number obviously did not want you to have a real number. Maybe you're not this person's type; note this could mean that you are short, fat, ugly, dumb, annoying, arrogant or just a general loser." Because these recordings were funny, people would dial the number again and again, and with each call Jeff made more and more money.


Betty Funk is obsessed with recycling. Imaging her feelings when she discovered that car seat belts can't be reused for legal reasons. So she decided that she'd have to do something with millions of seat belts that are sitting in junk yards. Being a woman, she decided to make a purse out of seat belts. The idea quickly caught on and first 1000 bags where sold out quickly (they can be quite expensive, up to $160 for a custom bag). The main selling point turned out not to be 'green', but rather their amazing durability due to material they are made of. Not only there is no 'wear-and-tear' with her bags, one woman pulled a truck with here bag when a tow rope proved too short.

David Deprice blogs at Unusual Business Ideas That Work, the only online blog solely devoted to strange but successful online and offline business ideas.