Today, I learnt a lesson. This lesson is good enough to write about and hence this post.
I am a big fan of Brian Solis (of the PR 2.0 fame). Here’s his blog. I was reading one of his blog post the how Foursquare, which happens to be one of the hottest start ups, is changing how local businesses (restaurants, salons, spas, eateries, burger joints, other fast food joints etc.) interact with their customers and vice versa. More emphatically the point of the blog is how a local business can’t escape the shadow of Foursquare and why it has everything to gain from being a part of the Foursquare magic.
A thought came to mind that a natural extension to this idea is a Foursquare of products. After all, the ultimate aim of any company’s marketing team it to make their customer loyal to their products, isn’t it? Since Foursquare has made it possible for local businesses to offer incentives to loyal customers through convergence of social media and smart-telephony, it must be possible for a “product” company to make their customers loyal or engage with them in a better way. And I got tempted to think that I must be one of the earliest people to get this thought, Bingo! Oops……nope, that’s not true.
I thought of developing the idea into a prototype business framework but before that, I thought I should search Google if any such idea already exists. So I searched “Foursquare for products” in Google. There it was! It’s called Hollrr. Someone wrote about it here.
Here’s the lesson. If you think you’ve got a good new business idea, search for it on Google first. It is very likely that many of the geeks out there have already thought of this and some of them have already built a business around it, provided that you search well enough. If you don’t find any, you are lucky.