Archive for Great Ideas

Wag! Personal dog walking

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One of the biggest concerns with dog owners is getting consistent walking. If you own a dog and no one is home all day, or if you go on vacation, there isn’t a quality way to let them have freedom to exercise while keeping them safe inside your home. Wag! Co-founder and CEO Joshua Viner was unsure about committing to take care of a dog since he wasn’t home often and it wouldn’t be fair to the dog to be stuck inside a cage all the time. He took this problem and created a very innovative unique solution.

Wag! is an app you get on your phone that allows people to come to your house and give your dog a walk. This idea sounded really weird to me at first but the more I thought about it, the more it made sense. Most dogs require at least 30 minutes of exercise per day with bigger dogs needing even more. A lot of time with people working full time jobs and having other activities it can be difficult to always find the time to walk your dog.

Wag! has a guarantee that your house and dog will be safe using their services and even have insurance up to 1,000,000$ for your home while using their service. They thoroughly screen everyone that applies to become a dog walker and does everything possible to keep your home and beloved animal safe.

This service is not only a great idea for dog owners but also for the people walking the dogs. Personally, I would love to be paid to walk people’s dogs and spend time with them. I was never allowed to get a dog as a child and so I always appreciate it when I get to be around any dogs. It also seems like a great way to make money as a college student looking for something to do over breaks or during free time at school.

All in all, Wag! is the best new service to help keep your dogs healthy. It helps owners know that their dog is well cared for and in the best shape possible while giving them the freedom to be away from home. Finally, it is a great new way for dog lovers to spend time with a lot of dogs and making money while doing it.

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Tonami’s Creations: For Children Aged 4 to 95 Years

Tonami’s Creations is the creation of Tonami Abiona, 7 year-old Nigerian entrepreneur who loves to draw, paint, color, write, and create.

At the humble age of five, Tonami began creating her own books of sorts, collections of art and stories. She gave them to her friends, wanting to spread her love for creation, and encouraged them to do the same thing. Her simple art form soon turned into a business opportunity when she was approached by Kid Entrepreneurs, “an organization that is primarily focused on raising the next generation of entrepreneurs;” they wanted to showcase her product!

A few pivots later, Tonami, with the help of her computer engineer and entrepreneur mum and financial analyst dad, arrived at what is now the My Story Book Kit. This product is “a creative writing resource for young readers, writers and illustrators,” containing a detailed instruction manual that guides kids through the contents and their own story-writing process. The kit encourages kids to be creative, and sharpens problem skills, all the while helping with personal and educational development.

Tonami’s branding is, quite frankly, genius. It’s a brand by kids, for kids, but appealing to parents, teachers, and gift-givers as well. The business increases their presence by showcasing at events and offering their products through different retailers. They also market the My Story Book Kit as a great gift idea and sell t-shirts to increase brand awareness.

Taking an everyday piece of joy and turning it into a business, Tonami’s Creations has re-created the way kids around the world look at creativity. To see their website, click here.

Smiley Face Sponge Becomes a Jackpot

Aaron Krause, the creator of Scrub Daddy turned a simple idea into a million-dollar company. Scrub Daddy was founded in 2008 by Krause. He later partnered with Lori Greiner, a business mogul on the shImage result for scrub daddyow “Shark Tank”. The company sells smiley-faced dish washing sponges that change its texture and feel depending on the temperature of the water. The features of this sponge is that it is scratch-free and odor resistant, as well as dishwasher-safe. Krause had always had a passion for invention and even as a child would be constantly inventing. Scrub Daddy originally was not invented to dish washing Krause engineered the sponge originally to be for washing his hands after a long day as a factory worker and his hands would be covered with chemicals and grease. One day, he had a eureka moment and realized that it would be way more useful for washing dishes. Plus, the hole would allow for it to be easy to hold when scrubbing pots and pans.  Krause’s story is inspirational because he simply revolutionized an everyday item into a million dollar business. His story shows that just simple changes to an already utilized product can result in a huge success.

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Silbermann and Sharp: Pinterest

Ben Silbermann and Evan Sharp, co-founders of Pinterest, both used their prior experiences in the technology and the internet to start a very successful business of their own. Silbermann was a Google employee until he left to design apps on his own. However, these failed to gain any traction, until eventually he designed a product inspired by his own love of collecting things.

Similarly, Sharp worked at Facebook as a product designer. He met Silbermann in New York, and then joined his team to make Pinterest a reality.

Pinterest is really about idea sharing. People enjoy telling others about their ideas, and Pinterest gives them a platform to not only do so but also to gauge how a community will respond to it. It is a great place to see other peoples ideas as well, and find inspiration for many different things.

This business idea is a great example of collision in a liquid network. In the realm of technology and the internet, two men with the experience and ideas necessary collided to make a business that could possibly eclipse Facebook and other social media giants.

Without one another, the idea would just be a pair of hunches, and nothing would have come from it. However, in a community where ideas can bounce around, change, and grow, true innovations can be born.

Jack Kim- Benelab Search Engine

Jack Kim is a young entrepreneur that is still in high school in Seattle. He is the founder of a search engine called Benelab that is designed to make philanthropy easier by generating donations. Jack’s project is not-for-profit and he plans to donate all of the revenue generated by Benelab. Jack quickly learned the power of a search engine’s ability to generate wealth from very little traffic through his work with search engines in the past. After developing an outline for his idea, Jack got a team of his high school classmates together to start working on the project. So far, Benelab has been incredibly successful at generating wealth, and all of this wealth is then donated to different charities and organizations to help the less fortunate. Benelab provides an easy yet effective way of enabling everday internet users to participate in philanthropy, even if they do not realize it.

“Many people think of charity as something limited to the rich or “good”, but in reality it’s something that can and should be incorporated into anyone’s daily life – you just have to know how.” – Jack Kim

Spotify – Daniel Ek

Spotify or Apple Music?

Answer: Spotify

Spotify has been around for many years, but it especially rose to dominance in the last few years. However, it hasn’t always been success and diamonds for the two Swedish founders and entrepreneurs, Daniel Ek and Martin Lorentzon.

Once upon a time (back in 2005), they were two guys fiddling and working on the development of Spotify from Ek’s apartment. It was so hot inside because of all the servers running– and the two founders were said that they were forced to sit around half-naked to avoid sweating to their death.

But let’s back up.

Daniel Ek has always had an unparalleled love for music… and technology. The young Swedish boy was without a biological father in his life and was given the chance to combine music and technology in his studies at secondary school. After completing IT college where he graduated with top grades, he landed a job at Europe’s largest advertisement company and rapidly became successful. At that age, 23, he was financially independent, owned a red Ferrari Modena, and owned a VIP card to the hottest clubs in Stockholm, Sweden. Source

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Restoration Apparel Co: Michael Mitchell

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Today we live in a world where the apparel industry is more prevalent than ever. The rise in fashion has made it so that you could purchase a shirt anywhere from $10 to $1000 and the market just keeps expanding. In order to supply the heavy demand placed on clothing, the apparel industry employs many people from every corner of the world.

However, many of these workers, especially in third world countries, are being paid extremely low wages.On average, only 2.5% of the wholesale price of apparel goes to all workers who construct the  products in the developing world.

Michael recognized the exploitation that occured so frequently in this industry and decided to act on his compassion for these people. Michael along with others started a company called Restoration Apparel Co. Restoration Apparel Co. strives to lift the lives of workers and restore dignity to the apparel manufacturing industry through living wage job creation and its Wage Restitution Allowance give-back program. It offers factory direct access to dye sublimated, screen printed, and embroidered sportswear while providing its customers peace-of-mind regarding the production of their products.

I admire this entrepreneur for his compassion and selfless heart. And unlike so many other people, this entrepreneur chose to act on his compassion by supplying a better paying job for people who are stuck in their poverty.

Warby Parker: Making Glasses Cheap Again

Warby Parker has reimagined the eyewear industry as the first company to introduce affordable eyewear that can be purchased online. The company offers prescription eyeglasses for a flat $95 and has a number of stylish options. Customers can order a number of different eyeglasses, try them on at home, and return the pairs that they do not want. The idea started with a simple question. Why are glasses not sold online? Founder, Neil Blumenthal asked that question so he recruited three friends and Warby Parker was born. However, the company ran into problems early on. Forty-eight hours after the website had launched, it had to be taken down because they received so many orders. The website did not indicate when a product sold out which led to a 20,000 person wait list. Eventually, they sorted out their website issues and are currently making waves in the industry.

This company peaked my interest because of Warby Parker’s ability to recognized gaps in the marketplace. Currently, Luxottica has a near monopoly in the eyeglasses industry. While Luxottica controls the brick-and-mortar sales, they do not address the online market. Neil Blumenthal saw that gap in the market and was able to capitalize on it. However, the problem he solved wasn’t complicated, it was simple. Sometimes the best ideas are the simplest.


Johnny Ward: The Paid Vacationer

Johnny Ward was raised on the welfare system in Ireland. At 18, he left for England, where he attended a university there. When he graduated, he decided to tour Asia until he ran out of money. With the last little bit of money he had, he booked a flight to New York City, and decided to live their for a while. However, even in this exciting country, he could never find a job that he loved, so he decided to invest $100 into starting his own travel blog, writing about his experiences in the different places he had gone to. Little did he know that this $100 project would turn into a multi million dollar business.

Now, Johnny Ward spends his time traveling around the world, writing about the best places to eat, fun exercises to do in each place, and what the best places are to go if you want to do touristy things or know some local hacks. Johnny has been to every country in the world and gets to choose where he works, although he only works for 10-15 hours a week.

Ward in Iraq

Johnny represents true innovation because he took what he was passionate about and turned it into a truly innovative business venture. He works very flexible hours, get to talk about whatever he wants to, and makes a lot of money doing it. It is neat to see how he went from being a poor Irish boy who ran out of money to an incredibly wealthy and successful global businessman.

Manly Man Candles

As a young, 14-year-old entrepreneur, Hart Main saw a need for more manly-smelling candles for manly men so he capitalized on it. Instead of the typically fresh laundry, flowery smelling candles, Hart created “ManCans”, candles made for men that are “more likely to smell like a fresh new baseball glove”.

Hart’s idea started as a joke when he was teasing his sisters’ “girly scented” candles that she was selling for a school fundraiser. His mom then suggested that he make a more masculine scented candle to solve this problem. With Hart’s $100 and his parents $200 investment his business took off from there.

“ManCans offers eight scents so far: New York Style Pizza, Grandpas Pipe, Sawdust, Campfire, New Mitt, Fresh Cut Grass, Coffee and, of course, Bacon.”

Not only has Hart’s business flourished economically in the for-profit industry, but he has also donated his time and money to various charities. The candles are made of empty soup cans that have been purchased by his family and the soup is donated to a local soup kitchen. Hart’s mom makes the candles in their kitchen with supplies from Ohio, but they are looking to rent out a space because their kitchen has become overwhelmed with candle products.

Hart presents himself as a very professional business man for only being 14 years old. He cares about his company and the way things are run. He had a simple idea to a problem that he was passionate about it and he created a very successful business out of it. ManCans are now sold in stores across the country and Hart is gaining a decent profit from it.

Let Hart Main be an example to us all that age is just a number and that you can do or change anything you are passionate about.

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Hart Main and his “ManCans”.