What's the Best Entrepreneurial Idea You've Ever Had?

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JodyBuchanan

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I've had lots. Some have worked while others haven't. I'm curious about yours. What's the best (most fun, most lucrative, most satisfying) entrepreneurial idea you've ever had?
 
LukeLewis

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I have one for you. This was one of my best business ideas of all time. It made me good money very quickly. Unfortunately, it was somewhat illegal, if you know what I mean.

My friend and I used to visit Canal Street in NYC often, about 25 years ago. Back then, the shops down there sold knock-offs of just about anything, from handbags to stereos to jewelry. We were never really into anything other than watches, so that's what we went down there to buy. They had a bunch of different brands and some of them were cheesy, but the TAG Heuer watches looked great. Very authentic. And for $25 each, they weren't a bad deal, considering they kept time as good as any other brand of watch that I've owned.

Anyway, after buying a few of these watches and wearing them to a local college I attended, I noticed some interest in them from the other students. Right there, I saw an opportunity. The next time my friend and I visited Canal Street, I bought a few extra watches. When I brought them to the college, they sold like hotcakes. So because of this, we continued to visit our favorite watch shop to buy, but because we were frequent customers by this point, I was able to haggle the price of each watch down to $7. When I sold them at the college, I charged $20. After a few weeks, I was able to make a handsome profit.

The best part of all this was that I had one customer who was from another country. He loved the watches and he would buy about five from me every time I saw him. He'd ship them back home to his friends. I actually didn't care what he did with them as long as he continued to buy them.

Eventually though, my friend and I saturated the market at our college and we weren't able to find any more customers. That's when our endeavor stopped. It was good while it lasted though.
 
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JodyBuchanan

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LukeLewis said:
I have one for you. This was one of my best business ideas of all time. It made me good money very quickly. Unfortunately, it was somewhat illegal, if you know what I mean.

My friend and I used to visit Canal Street in NYC often, about 25 years ago. Back then, the shops down there sold knock-offs of just about anything, from handbags to stereos to jewelry. We were never really into anything other than watches, so that's what we went down there to buy. They had a bunch of different brands and some of them were cheesy, but the TAG Heuer watches looked great. Very authentic. And for $25 each, they weren't a bad deal, considering they kept time as good as any other brand of watch that I've owned.

Anyway, after buying a few of these watches and wearing them to a local college I attended, I noticed some interest in them from the other students. Right there, I saw an opportunity. The next time my friend and I visited Canal Street, I bought a few extra watches. When I brought them to the college, they sold like hotcakes. So because of this, we continued to visit our favorite watch shop to buy, but because we were frequent customers by this point, I was able to haggle the price of each watch down to $7. When I sold them at the college, I charged $20. After a few weeks, I was able to make a handsome profit.

The best part of all this was that I had one customer who was from another country. He loved the watches and he would buy about five from me every time I saw him. He'd ship them back home to his friends. I actually didn't care what he did with them as long as he continued to buy them.

Eventually though, my friend and I saturated the market at our college and we weren't able to find any more customers. That's when our endeavor stopped. It was good while it lasted though.
That's actually a very good idea. I like the way you saw an opportunity so quickly. You really do have the entrepreneurial spirit!
 
15Katey

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JodyBuchanan said:
I've had lots. Some have worked while others haven't. I'm curious about yours. What's the best (most fun, most lucrative, most satisfying) entrepreneurial idea you've ever had?
I don't have a great entrepreneurial idea, but I do have a lousy one. I thought it would be just as entertaining though.

When I was in college, I majored in fashion. After taking a few classes, I thought I was the bomb-diggity. For those of you who don't know what that means, it means the cat's meow. I got to a point with my classes that I thought I knew what I was doing. Unfortunately, I didn't really understand consumer behavior very well. Or consumer desire for that matter.

I read in the paper that a guy from a neighboring town was selling boxes of pretty high quality t-shirts. I stopped by his house and bought about 200 of them. Some shirts had small holes in them from moths, but overall, they were great. For the price, they couldn't be beat.

I brought the shirts to a local screen printer and had a design put on them. I can't even remember what it was, but I do remember that the entire print project cost me around $200. That was for about 100 shirts. I put a design on the front and back. The shirts looked great and I was in high spirits.

When it came time to sell them though, I wasn't able to sell even one, no matter what I asked for them. I went down as low as possible, but no one bit. No one would even buy a shirt for just a few bucks. It was terrible. I even went to a dance party one night with a bunch of shirts trying to give them away as prizes. No one even wanted them there. I have no idea why. Ultimately, I was forced to keep them all, so they've been sitting in my closet for years now. I wear one every so often.

Terrible, right? An utter failure.
 
JodyBuchanan

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15Katey said:
Terrible, right? An utter failure.
I honestly don't think any real entrepreneur hasn't experienced at least a few failures. That's the name of the game.
 
CampFireJack

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JodyBuchanan said:
I've had lots. Some have worked while others haven't. I'm curious about yours. What's the best (most fun, most lucrative, most satisfying) entrepreneurial idea you've ever had?
The best, best, best idea ever came from my best friend when we were kids. He heard on the radio that Action Park in Vernon, New Jersey was having some sort of sale. If you brought in a Yankee baseball ticket stub from a recent game, you'd get into the park for free. I think he heard about this on the radio. It didn't take long for his idea to click, so when it did, he called me on the phone to tell me his plan.

Basically, we drove down to Yankee Stadium (the old one) on game night and asked people for their game stubs as they were walking out of the stadium after the game. Some gave them up easily while others were highly suspicious. Once we had about 100 in hand, we left.

The next day and the day after, we drove down to Action Park and hung around the parking lot. As people would drive in and park their cars, we'd approach them to see if they wanted to buy a Yankee ticket stub from us. We were charging $10 and it cost $29 to get in if they paid at the gate. So many people had heard about the sale and quickly bought the stubs. Many didn't though because they had never heard of the deal. We ran out the second day, but not before making many hundreds of dollars. What a great idea. Not exactly and entrepreneurial business idea, but an idea to make money nonetheless.
 
JodyBuchanan

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CampFireJack said:
Not exactly and entrepreneurial business idea, but an idea to make money nonetheless.
That is one clever idea. That kind of thinking comes from a real entrepreneur. Tell that to your friend.
 
CaptainDan

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I am not clever, but I do know how to work. I've been working since I mowed my first lawn at about 10 years old. My neighbor needed his lawn mowed, so I used my father's push mower to get the job done. For that, I earned $5. I enjoyed the feeling of earning money by myself, so I began asking other neighbors if they needed their lawns mowed. Some did, some didn't. I will tell you this - by the end of that first summer, I was earning $46 per week. Not bad for a 10 year old. I had wads of cash in my bedroom.

When I graduated high school, I borrowed some money from my father so I could buy a pickup truck. I fabricated a chip box that I installed on the back of it and rebuilt the wood chipper my father had used for many years. I rebuilt the Chevy 350 small block engine I put on it and purchased new v-belts for it. I even sharpened the blades. When an Army recruiter called me to see if I wanted to join, I turned him down. He asked why. I told him I was starting a tree removal business. Just as luck would have it, he had a Husqvarna chainsaw sitting in his office that he was trying to sell. I drove to him and bought it for $100. With a used truck, very used chipper, and a used chainsaw, I was in business.

I made some flyers and drove around my town, dropping one in each mailbox that belonged to a property that had a dead tree on it. I received many calls the very first night I did that. I estimated the jobs and got many of them. By the end of my first month, I had earned $2000. That was the proudest I had ever been with myself.

I continued on this path for a few years and made very good money. I eventually decided that cutting down and pruning trees was just too hard of work for me, so I went to college instead. Today, I'm still an entrepreneur and I make more money sitting at the computer than I ever would have cutting down trees. But what a great experience.
 
What's the Best Entrepreneurial Idea You've Ever Had? was posted on 03-04-2021 by JodyBuchanan in the Business Forum forum.

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