It is nice to be getting some recognition for the countless hours I’ve been putting in!
Date: August 29, 2013
Author: Paul K. Stevens
How many times have you said: “I wish I could find (fill in the blank) in a bigger size / different color”? It’s when you notice a need for something that is missing – but then act to supply that lack – that makes you an entrepreneur.
Josh Hagler hit on the lack that sparked his business idea when he was shopping in Target for posters. As a student in rented accommodation, posters are the only way to decorate and personalize walls in a temporary way that won’t upset the landlord. Josh found the ones on offer were aimed at a younger market, with nothing to appeal to college students.
Instead of giving up, and living with boring, plain rooms, Josh decided to design his own range of posters. He included work from art students which provided originality, as well as offering them a sales outlet. This simple idea grew into supplying lots of decorative items for students at RoomScapeU.
“I want to have a student marketplace through the site where students can make really cool stuff, sell their artwork, sell some convenient invention they have. It’s an entirely new market opportunity for college students.”
By sharing space on his website, Josh is fostering a whole new batch of entrepreneurs who might not have been able to sell their creations on their own. His promotions are built on social media:
“Social networking is huge. The whole idea now is to take your good idea and kind of make it social. That’s just how college students are. They want to share their experiences. I first want to have a rewards system for sharing your purchases. So, for example, if you just bought something really cool if you tag us on Instagram or Facebook, you get a discount on your next purchase.”
By concentrating his sales efforts on a niche market, Josh has shown the value of his knowledge of their needs. Let this story inspire you to follow up the next time you can’t find what you’re looking for. Ask yourself if there are enough others who feel the same, and take that first action step towards filling that lack. Start small, and allow your imagination to lead you to find ways to develop and grow.
- Paul Graham on Building Companies for Fast Growth (inc.com)
- (Young) Entrepreneur Checklist (tech.co)
- Start Your Own Damn Y Combinator – Mark Suster, Om Malik, Michael Arrington, Kevin Rose, Sequoia Capital (ycuniverse.com)