Who else wants to generate ideas for income opportunities from home in a lousy economy?

Looking for ways to earn a second income in your spare time could help ease the blow of rising living expenses

You hope the lousy economy is going to improve. How bad can it still get? Petrol price increases. Electricity price increases. Tax increases. Toll road fees so high they are effectively blocking entry into your city, forcing you to rethink where you work. Shortages driving up prices. As a friend remarked, “I don’t know how people are managing to live anymore.”

How are you managing to keep to your budget with expenses rising?

But after paring your personal business expenses to the bone, where should your focus be?

Second income opportunities and home-based businesses are looking increasingly attractive.

Home-based income opportunities may not be a substitute to formal employment but can be complimentary.

Use your creativity to generate ideas for niche markets

With the information explosion, Internet growth, and new ways needed to reduce costs and increase value, generating your own ideas for products and services is becoming within reach of many more people. Business-in-a-box packages and franchises are huge but designing your own business is becoming more attractive with markets going markets.

How can techniques of creativity of idea generation help you generate ideas and turn your ideas into moneymaking opportunities?

We look at how you can use techniques for producing ideas to make a second income, a silent income, without giving up your day job to make life a little easier.

I visited an outdoor market, probably the largest in South Africa, on Saturday morning to check out home business creativity first hand.

Stalls were overflowing with natural and organic fresh fruit and vegetables, handcrafted gifts, deli items, clothing and footwear in natural fibres, toys, arts, ceramics, hand-crafted jewellery, natural make up and health and wellness products. This informal retail environment provides a platform for crafters, farmers, pharmacists and artists – people who earn a living expressed through their passion and creative abilities.

“They know who they are buying from”

Most of these small businesses have some manufactured product (mostly handmade). The manager of the outdoor market said that what’s big is health products because of the health-conscious mothers in the area as the demographic has changed. More men are getting into the outdoor craft market with quality products that rival mass-produce products. I asked the manager what brings so many customers to the market. “It’s the quality of the handmade products and the interaction between the customers and stall owners,” he says. “Customers can deal directly with the manufacturer of the product – there’s more involvement… They know who they are buying from”.

Businesses that began from an idea

Not one of these close to 100 small business operations have been started from a pre-packaged business kit or public franchise. All these businesses were begun in the form of an idea and the creative yearning of the owners.

Open market selling is not for everyone. But the point is that many businesses are started all the time by people who have generated their own ideas for cash, either full-time or part-time (some of these stall operators sell on-line when they are not on show at the outdoor market).

Franchise businesses are proven in many cases with risks ironed out but they are expensive. Risks remain in any business such as changing demographics, new customer buying patterns and competitive threats. There’s no guarantee for any business whether you buy a franchise, a biz-kit type business or purchase a firm someone else started. Your idea for product or service has just about the same chances of success as all those ready-to-start businesses available off-line or online.

Consider the difference in opportunity

Just consider the difference in opportunity. You buy a franchise for R1 million ($125,0000) and have to be very successful to make back your initial investment. A business formed by an entrepreneur doesn’t have to pay this cost. You can sell your business at a healthy multiple whatever way you determine its value.

On the Internet you find many businesses that have begun in the form of an idea by their owners. These businesses express the know-how, experience, skills and passion of their owners. They are filling the many niches (creneaus or holes) left open by the larger businesses not geared to service them profitably.

If you are thinking about a second income opportunity for yourself, why not first try to generate your own ideas before you buy a turnkey business that you will have to pay for a long time before you start earning money. In the next article from ideaaccelerator.co.za we will help you to quickly generate ideas to come up with money making opportunities in your spare time.

By generating your own ideas, you may just discover an income opportunity that can help you cushion the blow of increased living costs or give you a little extra to make life more interesting. 

Double your potential with breakthrough ideas
Do you want to come up with new business ideas? Choose Idea Accelerator for practical, hands-on advice without the myths and half-truths.

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