We get a lot of enquiries regarding App ideas here the Digital Noir HQ, some are duds and some can turn out to be gems, but one thing is usually evident; people are always hesitant to tell us what the app is about. We understand the thought of someone stealing your idea is quite alarming, it’s human nature. However, we believe that being open with your idea is the best way to get it off the ground, here’s why:
1) Passion & Execution
Having an idea is 1% of what needs to be done, execution is 99% of the work. It’s extremely rare that someone will just drop everything and spend time and resources to copy your idea. The most important thing an ‘idea thief’ can’t duplicate? Passion. You need passion, effort and perseverance to bring an idea to life.
The most likely situation of someone stealing your idea is an entrepreneur who is already playing around with a similar idea that you have. The world is a big place, and 9 times of 10, an idea you come up with has already been thought of, or even already tried and failed. If you can execute it better, you can still succeed (think Myspace being forced out by Facebook).
2) Learning From Others
Sharing your app idea is a great way to learn if your idea is actually good or not. It’s the best way to get feedback, develop new ideas and features for your app you never would have thought of before, and gets you practicing on your pitch incase that deep-pocket investor walks by.
It’s good to ask people you don’t know of their opinion. It’s usually not a good sign if everyone likes your idea, they are probably lying or don’t want to hurt your feelings. Critical feedback is the best feedback.
“Everyone likes my app idea, my wife, my mate and my mum thought it was awesome!”
3) Slow & ‘Being Different’ Wins The Race
Many people with app ideas think they need to be top secret with their idea and rush it to the market so they can be the first to gain an advantage. This is mostly NOT true. Let’s look at Whatsapp and Line, two competing cross-platform instant messaging apps. With Whatsapp almost having a 3 year head start and 50 million users ahead, Line were able to catch up, fast. How? Stickers. Line were arguably the first to use funny stickers as emoticons and they were able to monetise this by creating a Stickers Store on their app. Last year Line made $100 million from selling stickers. It wasn’t about being first, Line were able to make the instant messaging experience more expressive and enjoyable.
Further proof is shown by David Teece, he found that innovators capture about 20% of the profits generated by their new ideas. Followers and imitators late to the game capture slightly more that.