Any startups begin as passion projects, which naturally means that some of those ideas are pretty crazy and some of them actually work. A lot of people have made a lot of money from ideas that could’ve been easily overlooked .Here are a few of the wilder startup ideas that worked.
There is no one, absolutely no one, who really believes that mood rings can actually tell us what mood you’re in. We hope. Also, there may be something wrong with you if you don’t know what kind of mood you’re currently in, like, right now. It’s like Karen from Mean Girls saying there’s a 30 per cent chance it’s already raining when she’s soaked through. Mood rings really change colour to temperature. So the only knowledge the mood ring is imparting is that’s it either hotter or colder than a minute ago.
2.BIG MOUTH BILLY BASS
It was the most annoying consumer invention we have ever encountered. The rubbery fish on a plaque sang, endlessly, either ‘Take me to the river’ or ‘Don’t worry, be happy’ every time you walked past it. It would drive any normal person bonkers .But some people loved it because it was a sales sensation which sold in the millions. There was at least one good thing that came out of this last year, a burglar in Minnesota was thwarted when he was startled by ol’ Billy.
In 1975, an advertising executive named Gary Dahl was chatting with mates who were whinging about the high maintenance of their real-life, breathing pets. Somehow, this led Mr Dahl to think about how much easier to it is to take care of a rock. Not a special rock, just your average, round, greyish rock. And then he convinced people to pay money for it after all, a pet rock doesn’t run away nor will you ever have to clean up its poop.The fad didn’t last very long but by then, he’d already convinced people 1.5 million people to buy them and he turned into a millionaire almost overnight. These days, a pet rock sells for $US19.95 but we reckon you could literally pick one up for free.
Maybe there is some merit to a snuggie or slanket because as Liz Lemon has aptly demonstrated, it’s a lot easier and warmer to eat cheese with a snuggie than a normal blanket, or no blanket at all. But there is something so unsightly about royal blue fleece that makes one look like a wacky, inflatable, flailing tube man. You can even get one for your pet. According to Buzzfeed, Snuggies have made over $US500 million!
Invented 70 years ago, the slinky was fun when the only thing we needed to be entertained was watching a spring tumble down the stairs at a set pace. Fascinating.But then the inevitable twisting happened and that slinky was useless for the rest of eternity. It’s been estimated that more than 250 million slinkies have been sold since they debuted in a Philadelphia toy store.
6. THE $1 MILLION HOMEPAGE
In 2005, an enterprising student named Alex Tew from England created the $1 million homepage as a way to try to pay for his education. The homepage was made up of a million pixels and he sold each pixel to any company or brand for $1, in $100 minimum blocks. The idea was that people would pay to be on the page for exposure and a link back. Mr Tew’s setup costs were 50 pounds for the domain and web hosting.Unsurprisingly, word got around and the homepage started to generate publicity. So naturally, people wanted to get in on the action. Websites that paid for a piece of the valuable real estate included an Alaskan coin and jewellery company, a guitar site and a travel booking site. The $1 million homepage hit its target within five months of launch.