The first featured article on Fastcompany.com today was titled “Why The Next Big Thing Won’t Come From A Fortune 500 Company.” I didn’t even read this article but the second sentence is what sparked this post. “Having little to lose is a good place to be.” Really, having “little” to lose is kind of relative. But in a world of big business, if you have the opportunity to invest just a few thousand dollars into a project that could potentially become very profitable, you do it. Bottom line, web sites are dirt cheap. Sometimes free, and when combined with a brilliant mind, sometimes that’s all it takes to hit the ground running and have almost 1/6 of the world following you (facebook).
Right now there is definitely a trend of small startups all competing to create the next big idea. The next big idea that according to many, won’t be created out of million dollar investments or current leading companies. With nothing to lose, a person or team of people are more likely to go for it, put all of their eggs in one basket, and go for broke. When you don’t have anything to lose, your potential gain is usually really high. To a small company, big gain comes in the form of notoriety, profit, and sometimes a hope that larger companies will see you as a threat, thus leading to billion dollar buyouts.
Psychologically though, seeing how I am one of the many with big ideas who are cautious about the best way to execute them, there is a certain dream that I have. More than a dream, it is a force that keeps me thinking of as many potentially large profit kick starters as I can. As far back as I can remember, I have been on the internet. Back when the advertisements were small companies who had internet savvy employees creating pop-up windows that would continue to pop every time you click out of one. Soon after, the larger companies started to grab hold of this idea of an infinite real estate to throw ads onto. Today, while browsing the internet, most sites have started back at the beginning again with small or possibly un-known companies advertising on their pages. The ads on Facebook don’t even have the company’s name on them! While adverting on the internet may be cheap and reach millions, it has gone backwards in evolution. The internet is the new TV but nothing new is being done with it.
So to bring all of this back to how the next big thing won’t come from a fortune 500 company, consider this. The internet is where big ideas and large companies are born these days. The keyword there is born. Google, Amazon, Youtube, Facebook, and many more were all started by a few if not one person. It wasn’t large companies investing in designers and idea makers to create a multi billion dollar industry. By having nothing to lose, there is nothing to hold back on when the medium of mass communication for your idea is practically free. You have everything and everyone to gain.