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Money Matters
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Old 05-13-2013, 01:42 AM   #1
615bimmerboy
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so i have an idea for a website/app and have no idea what to do next...

so i have recently come up with an idea for a website/application and pitched it to quite a few friends and family members and everyone that i have talked to seems to think i have a very good and potentially very profitable idea...

i have done some research and have not seen anything like it anywhere (which i realize could mean that the idea has already been tried and failed,) but i really highly doubt that is the case because i have told everyone i have talked to to let me know if they come across anything remotely similar and i have done my own personal research and found NOTHING.

so i have a few questions...keep in mind i am a college student that has no experience in starting a business or anything of that nature, so i am definitely new to all of this and will probably sound like a noob to some of you that have more experience, so bear with me.

1. I have no experience with web development or programming or anything...so how do i find someone that could develop a demo to present to investors to consider my idea? i know that i must have something to present to investors other than a verbal explanation of the concept but i dont know what exactly i need to do. this is honestly going to sound dumb, but i have no money to put into this concept (i am a broke college student working part time at a restaurant) so i dont know how i could convince someone to develop something for me when i have no money to put up front for their services....do i try to get a loan to pay someone to make a demo for me? how difficult is it to do this? like i said, i literally have no experience in any of this..

2. how do i find a legitimate investor that will not try to take a large stake of the company? or is that even possible? i honestly dont know, thats why im asking...

the only real advice that i have gotten from anyone is to have a lawyer present when i am pitching the idea, but again, i feel like i would need at least some money up front to even get the ball rolling

any and all advice is very much appreciated! please feel free to correct me if i have said anything wrong or have something mixed up, i literally could not be more clueless about how all of this works...most of the knowledge that i have on the subject is from what i have read online (which is a risk in and of itself) and what i saw from watching The Social Network about how Facebook got started (which im sure is also dramaticized *thank you hollywood*)
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Old 05-13-2013, 01:46 AM   #2
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so i have an idea for a website/app and have no idea what to do next...

Best bet is to learn how to do it yourself. May take some time but it's the only safe bet. Chances are if you pitched the idea to someone for a demo they'd run off with it and make it their own.


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Old 05-13-2013, 01:50 AM   #3
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Best bet is to learn how to do it yourself. May take some time but it's the only safe bet. Chances are if you pitched the idea to someone for a demo they'd run off with it and make it their own.


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and that is the exact reason i havent already tried...

also, i forgot to mention that this application would one where i would be able to automatically begin to get money from advertising from businesses...i wouldnt have to start a free version that generates no profit and then eventually work into advertising to make a profit
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Old 05-13-2013, 03:35 AM   #4
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so i have an idea for a website/app and have no idea what to do next...

Your very first bet is to get a trademark in regards to the name of whatever you decide to call this thing. Get the name registered to you (limited liability) and so no one can come behind you and call it that name with that very idea... Now as far as the demo of the web page/app is concerned, if your not already Into computers then you might have to acquire some help... It's really not that hard to be up eat but you must have some form of computer skills to formulate and have an idea as to where you'd want and what you'd want I. The header, footer, body etc... Be sure to not have a lot of white space on your webpage... Programming is no walk in the park either... Several languages that you can write it in... C+, c++. COBOL, java and the list goes on... Most popular is java and c+ (c sharpe)... Read some more on it... I'm a programmer and I tell you, with how technology changes, It's no easy task to keep up with... Now after the program is written you will have to have it compiled to where the computer can read it. Remember now that computer language is 1 and 0s so you'd have to take the finish product to a computer programming shop to get it compiled and up and running... Dont be scared though... Take your time and think and plan it out... Your mind conceived it, so it can be done...


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Old 05-13-2013, 08:49 AM   #5
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thanks Charmervin, i will look into getting it trademarked.
also, the only knowledge i have of computer programmming or writing code is the little bit that i learned in high school in a computer class where we created some VERY basic little programs...and that was over 5 years ago so i dont remember any of it and may require some outside assistance...

thanks for the advice though, keep it coming!
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Old 05-14-2013, 10:53 AM   #6
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Well, if you are still in college I would try enrolling in a basic webpage development course, perhaps even pay a few of your friends to create a website for you. They might do it for a few hundred bucks.

And enroll in a small business development class. Perhaps one devoted to online businesses.
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Old 05-14-2013, 11:07 PM   #7
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i may have to go with the second of those options (paying friends to create it for me) because i have looked for classes at my school that would pertain to that subject and they are higher level classes that would require prerequisites to take them and because my major has nothing to do with that at all, i do not have the required prerequisites and dont have enough time to take them all in order to get to the classes that i would need to take (im set to graduate next may but will be done with classes in december because i have to do a required internship in the spring semester and already have my summer and fall schedules filled up)
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Old 05-14-2013, 11:34 PM   #8
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so i have an idea for a website/app and have no idea what to do next...

I had similar experiences when I was in college - had ideas and no funding. It really does help to know a little something about programming/web development. I had started a business that was, at the time, rare but not unique. I was lucky enough to have really been intrigued by web development and learned everything I could on the fly in building that business. Fortunately, I ended up graduating college and had to give up the business due to getting securities licenses (business was in direct conflict with broker/dealers).

My first step was getting the domain name ("somebusiness.com") registered. I registered a few before deciding on the actual name I ended up with. They're cheap. Like $5-$10 per year each. Don't go to the big ones like godaddy, though.

If start with the domain name first. Then honestly I'd find someone trusted who can lightly develop and let them in on the business with a small percent or some agreed upon amount. Get a generic non-compete agreement from legalzoom.com and execute it. You'd be intellectually protected in the event of theft.


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Old 05-15-2013, 09:00 PM   #9
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I had similar experiences when I was in college - had ideas and no funding. It really does help to know a little something about programming/web development. I had started a business that was, at the time, rare but not unique. I was lucky enough to have really been intrigued by web development and learned everything I could on the fly in building that business. Fortunately, I ended up graduating college and had to give up the business due to getting securities licenses (business was in direct conflict with broker/dealers).

My first step was getting the domain name ("somebusiness.com") registered. I registered a few before deciding on the actual name I ended up with. They're cheap. Like $5-$10 per year each. Don't go to the big ones like godaddy, though.

If start with the domain name first. Then honestly I'd find someone trusted who can lightly develop and let them in on the business with a small percent or some agreed upon amount. Get a generic non-compete agreement from legalzoom.com and execute it. You'd be intellectually protected in the event of theft.


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Why would you not use godaddy?
Also, would legalzoom basically take the place of an intellectual property lawyer?
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Old 05-15-2013, 11:24 PM   #10
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so i have an idea for a website/app and have no idea what to do next...

I think there's less expensive domain registrars out there. I used 1&1 in the past. I know for a fact that the technical things via 1&1 are flexible. Not sure about anything else. A general google search for "domain registrar" would show you more options too.

Legalzoom or a company like it will simply provide the form for a non-compete type of contract. This in no way replaces the need for an intellectual property lawyer. But at least you'd have a legally binding document helping your case should the worst happen.


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Old 05-16-2013, 09:01 AM   #11
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Godaddy sucks is a good reason to not use them...

p.s. Draw up a business plan. Include your business mission/vision, a SWOT analysis (or other similar analysis), and the goals of the company you would be starting. Then compile financial information to show expected costs and revenue with expectations showing what is likely, optimistic, and pessimistic and the assumptions used to come up with those numbers. Whether you try to get outside investors or eventually start it up yourself you will be in a much better position to succeed if you do those things.
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Old 05-16-2013, 03:21 PM   #12
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Also, would legalzoom basically take the place of an intellectual property lawyer?
No.

You are going to have to share equity if you don't have cash to pay people. Nobody works for free
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Old 05-17-2013, 10:08 AM   #13
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Thanks for all the help guys and for steering me away from godaddy. On the topic of the non compete agreement, do you think it would be wiser to have an attorney write up one specifically for my business? I feel like it's not really a "one size fits all" kind if thing and would be better off having one made specifically for me. I realize that would probably cost me a good bit of money but in the long run would be more beneficial/legitimate.

My next question is how would you go about dividing up shares in the company amongst people who help with the beginning processes? Because I realize people won't work for free...but what is the best way to determine what percentage of the company to give someone based on the work they have done/will do? I'm sure there isn't an exact science to this but I don't know how much each job is worth I guess...
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