Steven Teo and his colleagues Marcel and YueLin, know all about cool business ideas and trends. They track them and write about them all the time.
CoolBusinessIdeas.com has been giving us new business ideas since 2004. I found the site early on and have been a reader ever since.
Recently I had an email interview with Steven Teo, one of the founders, to give us more insight into the business behind CoolBusinessIdeas.com.
Q: How did you get the idea to start CoolBusinessIdeas.com?
Steven: We first started CoolBusinessIdeas.com back in 2004 as a monthly newsletter about new and interesting business ideas around the world. My teammates Marcel and Yuelin and I are all based in Singapore.
When we were students in junior college, we worked together on a school business club publication about smart, never-seen-before business ideas and startups. Having seen how entrepreneurs around the world are making it big with their innovative new ideas, we were itching to start our own small business as well.
The breakthrough came when a sudden thought came to my mind: wouldn’t other would-be entrepreneurs be very interested in the new business ideas and innovations we were compiling regularly for our publication?
Our idea was to bring what we were doing all along to the online world. We thought of starting an email newsletter to deliver the new business ideas and start-ups we’d researched straight to our subscribers’ inboxes. We aimed to build up a large newsletter database so that we can sell advertising space in the newsletter and bring in the revenue.
Q: How did you get from being a newsletter to a blog format?
Steven: After some careful planning, we took the plunge and started CoolBusinessIdeas.com. It grew regularly and the next break came about a few months later when we decided to expand CoolBusinessIdeas.com into a blog, with new business ideas posted daily. That turned out to be a good move, because the popularity of the site has soared ever since turning it into a blog.
Q: It sounds like you are a micropublisher. What about other sites or publications?
Steven: Inspired by our success with CoolBusinessIdeas.com, we decided to start a new sister site not too long ago: GetEntrepreneurial.com. This new blog is focused on dishing out small business tips, advice and know-how to aspiring entrepreneurs.
The web is full of excellent business content which entrepreneurs should make use of, and our vision for GetEntrepreneurial.com is to bring useful business resources to people around the world dreaming of starting their own business.
Q: Is CoolBusinessIdeas.com a full-time business for you and your colleagues, or is it a side business?
Steven: CoolBusinessIdeas.com is created out of passion and an interest to try out the idea of establishing an online business when we were students. Although we are still pursuing our degrees, we give 100% commmitment to CoolBusinessIdeas.com and regard it as our very first full-time business.
Q: I understand you have a special publication taking one full year’s worth of business ideas and publishing them in a printable format.
Steven: Yes, we have taken all the coolest business ideas we published in 2006 and put them together in a single document.
Anita, I’ve been a fan of Small Business Trends for a long time now, and to show appreciation for sharing my websites with your readers, I’d like to offer the free ebook to your readers. They can download it here: