Magazines are stuffed with biz ideas

You don’t need to look any further than the nearest magazine rack for new business ideas — whether at your corner drugstore, the local newsstand, the supermarket, one of the big chain bookstores, or even the downtown library.

Let’s pretend you’re at a bookstore featuring a generous magazine section. Here are seven simple steps you can take to generate dozens, even hundreds, of fresh ideas for viable home businesses. 

  1. Notice how the magazines are arranged by general topic — Entertainment, News & Politics, Business, Travel, Crafts, Science & Nature, Pets, etc. Which topic interests you? Pick one.
  2. Let’s say you choose “Pets.” Within that broad subsection, you’ll find magazines about everything from dogs, to cats, to reptiles, to hamsters. You’ll also probably find a few generic pet magazines. Select a few that have the same emphasis.
  3. Buy those publications. Or, if the bookstore allows it, find a comfortable chair and begin studying the magazines you’ve chosen.
  4. Read the headlines on the covers. What problems do they address? What pet-owner challenges do they promise to solve? Think about businesses you might build around solving one, two, or more of those problems.
  5. Read the magazines’ “Letters to the Editor” sections. What are readers talking about? What are their concerns and questions? Again, consider how you can address those issues with your own business.
  6. Pay attention to the “departments” in the magazines. Is there one dedicated to grooming? To pet training? To diet? Each may contain unique ideas for your home business.
  7. Read the articles. What are the particular subjects? Pay special attention to the “experts,” whether the writers themselves or people quoted by them. Do any of the things said in the pieces spark ideas in you?
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