Your business ideas, hot or not!

IdeaSome of us are ideas people, others are more practical and better at doing. I would probably put myself more in the ‘ideas’ bracket. The worst thing about having ideas is that more often than not you don’t act on them. The worst thing about not acting on a good idea is that it can become obsolete or end up being done by someone else.

Working by yourself means that you don’t often get the chance to have an idea discussed and either shot down in flames or given the thumbs up, so I suggest that we use this blog to discuss ideas submitted by you!

If you have a business idea, offline or online then please contact me putting your message for the attention of Scott and supply your name, email address and describe your idea as best you can and why you think it has legs.

Obviously most people’s first reaction is to say “if I tell anyone my idea then someone will copy it”, unless it is an idea for a mini site that could be thrown up in a few minutes the chances are you are unlikely to have this happen, it is always a possibility though but that has to be weighed up against not doing it.

The more likely outcome with that scenario is you don’t share your idea, you keep it to yourself and nothing ever happens, my first break came when I emailed Sir Alan with my idea that was published in a national newspaper, that leap of faith opened doors for me and I am glad I asked for an opinion that put people in contact with me.

If you have good ideas and share them through this blog then a few things could happen

  • We shoot it down in flames :) and you can forget about it moving on to more productive things in your life
  • We collectively find out it has already been done
  • We give you the thumbs up, maybe that’s just the kick up the bum you need to progress with the idea, often the case!
  • Someone or some people with skills you lack also like your idea and offer to work on it with you which could make or break anything ever happening.

I have on occasion thought I had come up with the next big thing, in fact I remember a few years ago thinking up an idea where I took a dictionary a-z and created a definition based online with resources for each word, a bit like Wiki but before I had ever heard of it, and I was always going for the money and sponsorship angle though. Well it was probably poorly thought out at the time but I didn’t really have anyone I trusted to bounce the idea off or progress it with so that was that.

As an example I’ll start with an offline idea, I don’t plan to take this any further so feel free to steal if you think it has legs or maybe it has be done already somewhere that I don’t know of.

The idea:
Hair salonWhen customers go to the hairdresser to get their hair cut they often sit in front of huge mirrors for long periods of time (especially women), the bottom half of that mirror in front of the customer would be a fantastic place to advertise, completely wasted at present, the customer has to sit there for a prolonged period and talk about things like holidays, cars, children & weather so there should be TFT screens showing local adverts and holiday deals & discounts etc

The implementation
Offer the owner a percentage of revenue generated creates a low cost to entry into the market with one salon or shop at a time, TFT screens placed in front of each chair all hooked up and broadcasting adverts from a central location.

So, what do YOU think, does this idea have legs, is it done already? is it a go’er or a waste of time?

Your thoughts on this business idea
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So, if you have an idea and want to know other people’s opinions good or bad then get in touch.

About Scott Jones

Scott hails from the north east of Scotland and started earning online at the end of 2000 building websites for local businesses during which time he won an award from Lord Alan Sugar for Excellence in Enterprise. After having quite a bit of success with domaining Scott mainly runs educational evergreen websites which generate over 3 million visitors per month but is always on the lookout for a fresh thinking out of the box way to turn a buck. Follow on Twitter.


  1. Interesting post - I can definitely understand where you’re coming from. I have so many ideas that one of my toughest tasks is choosing what to work on.

    Your idea is interesting. Issues I see:
    -it will piss off customers (me at least)
    -many salons like try to appear classy so showing adverts will look cheap
    -tracking how many people actually see the ads

  2. I noticed this post appeared very early this morning. I would like to ask if you get up really early to work or if you just had this post set to appear overnight? (Because I think a lot of successful people, but not all, get up really early.)

    • The time it got published wasnt early for me. Scott and Al are based in the UK and I believe it was posted around 9am which isnt early at all 😉

  3. @Sam
    I agree most salons/patrons of them will not go along with this type of advertising because they try to appear classy and it will piss off customers who are paying a ton of money for simple haircut. That said, I think in the budget salon places like Cost Cutters / Fantastic Sams / Great Clips / Sport Clips / ect might go for something of this sort.

  4. Didn’t know the title was going to be used as the title to my site…woops.

    • You do now :) if you just leave the title blank it will hopefully clear it to be how it was before, must admit I’ve not tested that bit though.

  5. The idea for ads on a screen could work depending on how annoying they are. If the LCD could be in the mirror like the fancy hotel type ones and just regular shows on with targetted ads every 15 minutes for salon type products then it could work well.

  6. The classy salons could use it to promote their hair products, so another revenue stream might be creating custom adverts for them to use.

    The whole unit would have to be pretty well done though so it doesn’t get in the way and get covered in hair or splashed etc etc. I would think the initial cost of the unit would be quite high and the ROI might not be too high.

    • I would think TFT screens are really cheap nowadays, perhaps networking them together and running a system would cost a fair bit to setup though Garry.

  7. I have seen this in my local hairdresser, they have only recently implemented it and I thought…good idea. I may even ask them for pricing for my offline business.

  8. I also think it’s a pretty cool idea, I’ve seen this happening in a fair few taxis where they have an LCD in the back showing adverts throughout your journey.

  9. There is an add firm with big outdoor lcd adds in a building I used to work in. They make these large lcd’s for car dealerships and other places and have very cool ads to watch. If the patron had an option to have ads not show then probably most people would allow them (reverse psychology). Basically anyplace that people used to look at paper adds such as magazines, billboards and all are great opportunities for digital advertising. There is no click through so it does not tie to google or others. The only way to monetize it would be through enticing advertisers to pay for placement - not high tech at all and difficult to leverage.

  10. Scott

    you are asking for trouble

    you just wait for me to finish my GCSEs and I have a heck of an idea for you. It’s a big one

    Thanks for giving me this opportunity to see what a pro has to say about my ideas.

  11. I’m constantly brimming with ideas, usually after a but more thought i find a flaw in my idea.

    My business partner can testify to this!

    Hey ho, on to the next idea!

  12. Still a great idea Scott, I might take the idea on and run it through the other hairdressers…

  13. Coles, in Australia, has a related way of showing ads. They put up big plasma TVs around the store with “Coles TV” showing 24/7. In particular, there are screens above the queues at checkouts. Coles TV has some interesting content like weather and news, but mainly Coles specials and third-party ads.

    A flashing ad thirty centimetres away from my face while I’m getting a haircut might be a bit of a turnoff. But the Coles TV example may show that it can be done unobtrusively.

    May I ask why you went straight for a computer screen for the ads? On one hand, the screen allows you to show informative content from time to time to break up the ads, but on the other hand it hurts to stare at computer screens all day.

  14. you always have very nice ideas…

  15. I’ve seen this in action. I frequent an outlet of the House of Colour hairdressing salon chain in Dublin and they have monitors advertising local traders and services.

    It’s quite effective, but can get repetitive, fast. Especially when the average hair appointment lasts at least 3 hours. Variety is the spice of life.

  16. I used to have a ton of original ideas. Some worked and some didn’t. At least I try.

  17. I think it is an excellent idea. My concern has to do with implementation, though. A TFT screen per chair. That’s a significant start up cost. I think to get it off the ground, the hairdresser would have to shoulder some of this cost. Perhaps you mix the programming between entertainment and ads so the hairdresser sees it as adding value to the customer as well as making money.

    I could also see this being a nice add on niche for a company like NTN (the bar trivia people). Again, though the one person per screen issue seems problematic.

  18. I definitely see advantages to having people to bounce ideas off of, but I’m also very careful in whose opinion I value. I have had plenty of ideas that were successful despite people being lukewarm or against them. Sometimes they don’t have a good business sense and sometimes they are just too far outside the target market for the idea to even fully “get” it.

  19. Its powerful depending on how the tv com convey the message.


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