4 insane small business ideas that actually worked
Sometimes we take a look around ourselves and see what others don’t. Opportunity is a sly beast that often hides in plain sight and it takes a special set of eyes to see it within the mess of well worn ideas and already occupied niches.
But every so often an idea is formed by entrepreneurs in these tiny opportunity-fissures that fill a void few thought needed filling. These are their stories.
Let’s face it, flyswatters are boring. How about shot guns? Overkill, yes, but certainly not boring.
The bug-a-salt meets us somewhere in the middle.
This novelty shotgun lets users annihilate house flies and mosquitoes using ordinary table salt instead of wildly inappropriate buck shot! Let’s hear from the manufacturer:
“A miniaturised shotgun effect is generated through this ingenious design. Ordinary table salt is utilised as a lethal projectile with accuracy range of within 3 feet. Bugs will remain whole for easy clean up.”
Bug-a-salt is one of Indiegogo’s most successful campaigns, having sold over 21,000 fly shotguns.
It seems that a love of firing projectiles meshed with an intolerance of flying insects is a winning combination.
2) Algordanza: memorial diamonds
When faced with the prospect of our earthly demise, we often turn to a rather limited range of questions as to how we want to be laid to rest: Burial or cremation?
Such a dismal lack of choice seemed more of an opportunity than a restriction to Swiss company Algordanza. Algordanza specialise in creating artificial memorial diamonds from the carbon content of your mortal remains. Diamonds are forever and now you can be part of that eternity!
The process involves the creation of a diamond by replicating the natural pressures and environment present in the earth’s crust when natural diamonds form. Being 99.9% carbon, and with the human body’s 20% carbon, it is possible to extract the necessary carbon from a deceased person’s cremated remains and use this to seed a unique heirloom – a diamond made from you!
On the process, Algordanza states:
“The carbon solely from the remains of your loved one converts under high pressure and high temperature to graphite. The purified graphite is the foundation for the subsequent diamond transformation inside our own HPHT (High Pressure – High Temperature) machines.”
Once complete and cut to your specifications, your loved ones will be gifted with a timeless artifact of your existence, your molecules forever preserved in the crystalline structure of a perfectly formed diamond. Many choose to create custom jewellery with their treasures.
After all, inheriting Grandma’s ring is special, inheriting Grandma IN a ring is another dimension of special altogether.
I know what you’re asking: why in the name of Merlin’s beard, would anyone want to rent a chicken?
Well, lots of people who become interested in urban farming will consider getting some chickens for their yard at some point. This idea usually takes hold right after installing a veggie garden and right before considering an aquaculture fish pond setup.
And why not? Who wouldn’t want to bask in fresh eggy goodness every morning forever more. However, that’s a big step. What if you don’t like caring for chickens? What if they scare your kids? What if the neighbours complain? What if you realise they stink?
Well then, you’re stuck with an ammonia stained chicken coop and several chooks you don’t want.
If you decide at the end of your trial that you don’t gel with this whole chicken game, no harm no fowl.
4) Hangover Helpers
Here’s the situation: You and your friends were up all night partying. It was large. It got loose.
Now, you’re suffering from a horrendous hangover, you’re dehydrated, and your apartment is trashed. The thought of having to make yourself something to eat and then clean up that possibly hazardous nest of filth all your ‘friends’ left you is just too much to handle.
Just one glance at that cigarette butt filled beer bottle nestled gently in a pile of pizza crusts is enough to reverse your digestive system.
So what do you do? You call the Hangover Helpers that’s what.
These two college guys in Boulder, CO help their hung over clients crawl back into the land of the living with as little pain as possible. The guys show up at your house armed with a breakfast burrito and Gatorade for you. They then clean every room where the party happened. This includes cleaning dishes, pots, and pans, and recycling all of your beer bottles. Genius!