Every startup idea in mechanical

Crazy business ideas: unusual ideas have potential

Sometimes bizarre and seemingly crazy business ideas are so successful because they address a small and manageable target group, trigger a lot of sympathy here or simply fascinate. However, there is no magic formula for turning a crazy business idea into a success story. But what are the typical characteristics of a business idea that we put the “crazy” stamp on?

In principle, it can be stated that none of them correspond to the norms and often rather reflect the inventor's instinct for self-realization. Often it is just unusual or progressive ideas that are ahead of the times. This is always the case with technical inventions whose potential has simply not yet been recognized.

The IBM chairman's 1943 misjudgment of the world market potential for computers, which he saw at five units, is legendary in this context and one example among many. However, the crazy business ideas we are talking about are generally quite simple and therefore easy to understand, as the following small selection shows.



1. The Million Dollar Homepage

Who doesn't remember the one million dollar website, the crazy business idea from 2005 when student Alex Tew came up with the bizarre idea of ​​selling his website pixel by pixel? Born out of necessity, because he needed money for his studies, he offered the pixels of his website “The Million Dollar Homepage“An image map of the size 1000x1000 pixels for USD 1 per pixel. The site turned out to be an overwhelming success that he himself had probably not expected.

Anyone could immortalize themselves here for a dollar by placing the graphic link of their purchased pixel on any homepage. Of course, many wanted to take part in this fun, which made long-term advertising possible and secured entire blocks of pixels, which made it possible to display a recognizable logo on the page. Word of mouth made this site famous within a very short period of time and Alex Tew actually made it a millionaire, which the 200 or so imitators reportedly failed to do.



2. Paper made from elk dung

Even a layperson knows that paper is made from cellulose. Its origin is correctly assigned to the natural raw material wood. However, the fact that 70% cellulose makes up 70% of the excretion of the Nordic elk is expert knowledge. At this point, at the latest, a candidate would have to pass “Who Wants to be a Millionaire” and use a joker or be called Sune Hagmark, who is made from this extraordinary raw material manufactures paper in Östersund, Sweden.

With a common household kitchen mixer, he first mixes the animal remains into a porridge, which is then prepared for the further processing steps. The paper that is created as the end product has a brownish color and - contrary to what one would expect - smells simply of wood, which comes from the birch bark, a favorite dish of the stately ruminants.

That is why the end product is roughly structured and covered with tiny pieces of wood. The elk paper became a hit not only with tourists visiting his farm, but also with American companies that are eager to buy his paper.



3. Rental of guinea pigs

Surrogate mothers are not uncommon. Dogs can also be borrowed to find out whether a four-legged friend is really the companion you are looking for. But guinea pigs? Now it actually exists in Hirnwil in Switzerland, a village around 30 km from Zurich.

Because guinea pigs are no longer allowed to be kept individually after an amendment to the Swiss Animal Welfare Ordinance since September 1st, 2011, the crazy business idea "Sea columns for rent“Known suddenly from Priska Küng. If guinea pigs are only allowed to be kept in pairs, after one animal dies, the other is left alone, as the pairs of animals rarely die at the same time.

Since the law does not allow the remaining guinea pig to be left alone, this required the purchase of a new animal. An endless chain of animal husbandry would arise. But as it is, the guinea pig that has stayed behind is never left alone, and if the time permits, the rental partner is simply returned to Hirnwil. A guinea pig can be rented as a temporary partner from Priska Küng from 50, - SFR.



4. Travel agency for cuddly toys

Although children like to take their teddy bears and cuddly toys with them on trips, there was no independent travel agency for stuffed animals before 2010. That changed suddenly when a clever startup entrepreneur from Prague came up with this crazy business idea. After all, the city is a real tourist magnet, attracting millions of visitors every year and serving as a backdrop for countless souvenir photos.

Tomio Okamura, the founder and owner of "Sendyourdarling", the world's first specialist travel agency for plush toys, asked himself why only people should be seen in the photos of Charles Bridge and other sights. In any case, the lively startup entrepreneur couldn't complain about a lack of response after appearing on the Czech edition of the reality show Dragon’s Den.

The idea: The stuffed animals are sent in by their owners, taken care of by the Sendyourdarling team and photographed at familiar places. Then it goes back to the owner with a special passport and (proof) photos. In the meantime, the idea of ​​a travel agency of a different kind has found many imitators.

Be it in Barcelona (www.barcelonatoytravel.com/de), in Paris (www.furrytoystours.com) or in Königswinter near Bonn, where with "Teddy-In" (www.teddy-in.com) a travel agency for teddies and other stuffed animals resides, which travels with the cuddly friends and documents them with photos.



5. Stable fragrance from the can

Anyone who hears for the first time that there is now spicy country air to buy in cans will probably think what a crazy business idea this is. The idea only seems bizarre at first glance, because the philosophy behind it is not even that absurd.

The longing of many city dwellers for a rural idyll and childhood memories of people who grew up in the country is more pronounced than some might think. This is exactly where Daniela Dorrer, a 24-year-old office clerk from Landshut in Lower Bavaria, comes in. Lower Bavarian stall fragrance (www.stallduft.de) in cans is the name of her best seller, which she sends to Germany and abroad.

With industrial cotton as the carrier material, the stable odor, which is captured directly in the cowshed, lasts for a whole year. Packed in decorative tins, it is an extraordinary gift idea that is anything but disreputable, but simply extremely striking. Apart from that, hasn't you ever sold Berlin air in cans?



6. Social Memories - Network activities of Facebook users as a book

More and more users are spending more and more time on the social network Facebook and contribute a lot of their own ideas, creativity and personal notes. The Facebook activity of each user is thus given a very individual character, which, like a diary, is unique and unmistakable. It would be a real shame if all of these energies were introduced into the vastness of the Facebook network.

Social Memories (www.facebook.com/socialmemories) is the name of the app that documents this personalized content graphically and visually and keeps it in a book for eternity. Not a crazy business idea at all if you consider the potential that can be addressed with this business idea.

After all, we also keep old exercise books or document important sections of our lives with photos and videos. The application for creating books from “social memories” in Facebook was developed by Deutsche Post and is currently still in beta.




As can be seen from these examples, the success of crazy business ideas cannot be planned. The idea just has to arrive somehow or there has to be a market for the product. Even if the target groups in which the ideas are established are small, crazy business ideas can trigger a lot of media coverage.

Formats such as “Galileo” on ProSieben regularly pick up on such extraordinary inventions in order to present them to a large audience. One should therefore give free rein to one's drive for invention and venture into self-employment with market-ready products. When a business idea is declared crazy, that's already the feedback coming from customers, fans, competitors and the media.



Appropriate concepts for crazy business ideas: