999 Great Business Ideas

  1. Design and make soft toys which are suitable for shelf ornaments. For example: Alice in Wonderland characters mounted on stands which have a label giving the name of each character. The high quality of workmanship should allow you to charge prices to give you a good profit.
  2. Carve wooden ornaments which look like gargoyles. Attach to one side of the ornament a sticky baked material or magnet. They can then be added to car dashboards or to fridges.
  3. Put together a correspondence course about how to become a stock-market chartist. Sell through ads in financial newspapers and magazines.
  4. Begin a postal service which produces personalized bookplates. These might be printed with a person’s surname, coat of arms, thematic design relating to a hobby or occupation, drawing of a home, or a portrait. Sell to people with large collections of books.
  5. Set up a service which organizes holiday exchanges between people who live in English speaking countries and those in Japan and Continental Europe.
  6. Start an international correspondence club for stamp collectors. The benefits of membership would include being able to swap stamps, magazines, books and information. Match stamp collectors according to their interests and produce a periodic publication for all members.
  7. Make loveable pocket-sized soft toys and hang on a rack for display in shops. Give the toys a catchy name like ‘Pocket Pets’.
  8. Design a selection of bookplates. They might have a theme related to, for example: Greek gods, astrology, rural scenery, trains, etc. Have them printed and packaged in cellophane packets. Sell through bookshops and stationers.
  9. Bring out a correspondence course or audio cassette course, about how to write good dialogue for fiction. Sell through ads in publications for writers.
  10. Set up a business which organizes weight loss holidays. These holidays are not on health farms but consist of long distance walking, diet instruction, and discussion amongst participants. A person who wants to lose weight goes on a two or four week holiday which would consist of walking for most of the day, following a strict diet and evenings of discussion groups.
  11. Design and make a selection of lucky charm key-rings. For example, make a key-ring fob which is a wooden or metal number seven or four-leaf clover. Mount them on a rack and have them stocked at suitable retailers.
  12. Organize the production and distribution of souvenir potted plant holders. These plant holders should appeal to the same people who buy souvenir trays.
  13. Sell a wide range of postcards and souvenirs from a roadside stall.
  14. Produce novelty car stickers which feature a big ‘X’ stamped across pictures of traffic wardens, policemen, or cars. They are designed to be stuck to cars in the fashion of fighter planes to show enemy aeroplanes destroyed. They are for amusement only and should appeal to a wide range of drivers.
  15. Build elaborate sand-castles or sand sculptures at the seaside and accept donations from those who want to show appreciation of your work.
  16. Begin a service which helps car owners to sell their cars. You would have around twenty sites at newsagents, barbers, supermarkets, etc., where details of the cars are displayed. A car owner pays you, for example, £20, half goes to you and half to the site owners.
  17. Start a fortune telling gift service for new born babies. When a baby is born a fortune-teller provides a written statement about their future. Such a statement would make an ideal birth gift. Advertise in the classified columnist of a variety of publications.
  18. Bring out a selection of baseball caps which are printed with the names of popular sports teams. Distribute to sports shops, gift shops and sell by mail order.
  19. Design, produce and distribute tie clips which have a theme related to astrology, football, a holiday resort, etc.
  20. Set up a business which teaches languages by post. The courses might consist of both audio cassettes for learning to speak and written material for learning to write the language.
  21. Bring out a correspondence course about creative thinking and attract students by advertising in national newspapers and magazines. The ads might have a headline like ‘Do people say you lack imagination?’, or ‘The amount of money you make is limited only by your imagination’.
  22. Put together an audio cassette course about how to be a successful disc jockey. Sell from ads in music publications and have it stocked in record shops.
  23. Produce a series of biographical audio cassettes about well-known businesspeople. Bring out a catalogue and send it to business and professional people. Or start a monthly club where a subscriber receives a different cassette every month.
  24. Give private tuition about how to make money. The tuition might be about making money from business and investments. You might, for example, use some of the ideas listed in this selection as worthwhile money-makers. Prepare lesson plans on the subjects you wish to cover and teach a set course.
  25. Start a mail order business which sells paper and card products to photographers. For example, sell stationery with a photographic theme, cardboard frames in bulk at a discount price, printed paper with frames for planning photograph collections, paper supplies for processing, etc.
  26. Research, write and produce a manual or correspondence course about ‘How to start your own holiday organizing business’. This might cover everything from organizing walking holidays to conventional sightseeing holidays. Sell to opportunity seekers.
  27. Organize holidays for people at American farms and ranches. First advertise in the States for farmers and ranch owners who want to have paying guests. Then advertise in a variety of publications in this country for clients.
  28. Begin a mail order business which sells things related to cult figures such as Nikola Tesla, L. Ron Hubbard, Leonardo Da Vinci, John Lennon, James Dean, etc. Sell things such as press cuttings, photographs, audio cassettes, books, etc.
  29. Design and make novelty soft toys and caps. For example, a soft toy sledgehammer is attached to a cap so that it looks like it is embedded. Also make hats with antennae and horns.
  30. Produce an audio cassette course about positive thinking. Sell by direct mail and through press advertising.
  31. Seek out English overseas language publications for teachers and educationalists. Place adverts in these publications which read: ‘Educational products wanted for distribution in the UK. Write to…’.
  32. Produce a library of audio cassettes about the Wild West. Sell by direct mail or have them stocked in bookshops and record shops.
  33. At tourist sites take photographs of holiday makers with a man dressed as a gorilla, or other amusing costume.
  34. Produce an audio cassette course on ‘Teaching Yourself Gaelic’. Sell by mail order throughout the world.
  35. Design and produce a series of wall charts for children. One chart might ask a child to record one good deed a day; another might ask a child to record new words learnt; a third might be for recording the weather or what happened at school.
  36. Start a mail order catalogue which specializes in products which aid abstinence. For example, products for giving up: Smoking, Swearing, Nail Biting, Drinking, etc.
  37. Set up a school of variety entertainment. Teach beginners about the variety entertainment business. Also show beginners how to improve any acts of their own which they would like to perform.
  38. Design and manufacture skin painting kits. In each kit have a spectrum of colors and a selection of designs which can be easily copied. Get your kits stocked at shops which sell toys, novelties or artists materials.
  39. Use pastels or charcoals to do original pictures of tourist sites. Sell, framed or unframed, as quality souvenirs.
  40. Design garden ornaments which create special effects on mid-summer’s day. Start a business which builds and sells your designs. You might, for example, advertise in occult publications.
  41. Begin a lesson of the month club for those who want to learn the principles of management. Each lesson takes the form of a newsletter. The lessons are strung together to make a complete management course.
  42. Devise your own brand of Bombay mix snack. Set up a business which makes and packages the snack. Sell through newsagents and grocers.
  43. Design and produce a selection of amusing ‘Keep Your Distance’ car bumper stickers. For example: ‘Keep your distance, or we might meet by accident’, or ‘Keep car mechanics poor, keep your distance’. Have them stocked at car accessory shops and service stations.
  44. Put together a hamper of Christmas decorations. In each hamper include all the decorations needed to completely decorate a room of average size. The packaging might include a picture of a room which shows where each of the decorations might go.
  45. Bring out an audio cassette course about how to be assertive at home and at work. Use direct mail to sell the course to businesspeople and opportunity seekers.
  46. Use unusual materials to make names of football teams for hanging on walls. For example, they might be made from lines of studs on leather. Sell from ads in football magazines and programs.
  47. Bring together a selection of products related to chess. For example: books, ornaments, framed prints, chess playing accessories, etc. Produce a catalogue and sell by mail order.
  48. Design and make a selection of baby christening outfits. Sell the outfits by mail order or through shops which sell children’s clothes.
  49. Use leather to make key-ring fobs. Burn designs or put studs into the fobs and add a key-ring. Sell from a stall or find suitable retail outlets.
  50. Make kites which feature Union Jacks, Stars and Stripes or the colors of popular football teams. Package and have stocked at suitable retailers.

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