How often do you see a thriving new business or company, and you slap your forehead for not thinking of the idea first? Or, even worse, slap it because you did think of it but didn't do anything about it?
Everyone has good ideas, but we are so often at a loss as far as how to use them. You'd be surprised at how many letters I get that follow the same theme: People who know that they bake the very best sweet potato pie in the country, but they just don't know how to market it. That's why I thought it was so important to share Julie Clark's story with you. As the founder of The Baby Einstein Company, Julie (pictured above) turned her idea into a company with over $20 million in sales.
Julie, a former teacher, shot the first Baby Einstein video in her basement because it was something that she wanted for her children—an age-appropriate way to teach art, classical music and poetry. From there, she hit a New York trade show, sans booth (because she couldn't yet afford it) but with video in hand, and she made sure it got into the right hands—a buyer from the children's store The Right Start. Her enthusiasm, clear vision and persistence sold the first copy, and her distinctive idea ensured that sales continued to climb. "I think it's a good example of how, with limited resources, you can still do something successful," says Julie.
Julie's since sold The Baby Einstein Company (to Disney in 2001) and moved on to a new project, The Safe Side, through which she produces children's safety videos in partnership with John Walsh of America's Most Wanted. Her story sounds simple, but within it are a few must-dos if you're going to turn your brainstorm into a business.
It takes seven steps to make your dream a reality.