If You Build It, They Will Come. Worst. Advice. Ever.

The movie, Field of Dreams, had the famous theme of “If you build it, they will come.”

Kevin Costner’s character felt he should build a baseball field in the middle of nowhere and if he did, then people would come.

Baseball field viewed from behind home plate

That’s just not how business works.

My background is software development. I love to write software. A common problem with software developers is that we have some cool idea and so we create a program or app.

We spend time and energy creating this awesome app.

We then tell the world about this awesome app.

Nothing happens.

No one cares.

It’s because something was built to solve a nonexistent problem.

Don’t fall so in love with your idea that you work on it before knowing that people want it.

Do you know how to find out if people actually want it? You would think you could just ask them.

Unfortunately, that doesn’t work.

If you ask people what they want, they won’t be able to tell you.

Henry Ford, who created Ford Motor company, is credited as saying,

“If I asked people what they wanted, they would have said ‘faster horses’”.

Steve Jobs, founder of Apple, is credited as saying,

“People don’t know what they want until you show it to them.”

You don’t want to just build something hoping people will want it. But if people can’t tell you what it is they actually want, what are you supposed to do?

While your market won’t be able tell you what they want, they will be able to tell you what they don’t want.

As humans, we are really good at talking about what we don’t want. From that, it can be determined what we actually want.

What Is the Single Most Important Question You Could Ask Your Market?

A mentor of mine, Ryan Levesque, in his book Ask, goes into great detail about asking your target market questions in order to know what they want.

The SMIQ or Single Most Important Question that Ryan brags about is simply:

When it comes to X what is your biggest problem, challenge, or question?

You replace X with your particular market key word. For example, if you were wanting to help people with getting more leads for their business, you might ask:

When it comes to getting more leads for your business, what is your biggest challenge?


What is your biggest problem when it comes to getting more leads for your business?

As you pore over those results, what do you pay attention to? The most common answers? You may be tempted to do that.

Ryan mentions that as he was in the Orchid Care niche that he kept seeing items around watering their orchids – how to water, how much water, when to water?

What did he do with the results? He created a product teaching all aspects of watering orchids.

He went back to those same people that answered his questions and offered the new product.

You would think that he would be able to sell it, right? He didn’t just go off and create the product without consulting the market. He asked the market. And the market responded with a need around watering their orchid.

Unfortunately, he sold zero. What a disappointment.

Depth of Response is Greater than Frequency of Response

He went back and looked at the data again. This time he paid attention to something else. Instead of the most frequent responses which were usually short, he looked at the longer answers. The paragraphs of text that a person responded to that question.

And that is the key. It’s not about the most frequent surface answers, it’s about the answers that are long and detailed. These answers are from people who have demonstrated a tremendous amount of pain, suffering and struggle in their long, detailed, and passionate response.

Here could be an example of one response:

I’ve been caring for my orchids for years, but when I try to repot my orchids, I end up killing them. I don’t know what I’m doing wrong. I’m washing my tools. I’m washing my hands. I know that orchid roots are sensitive to glaze on porcelain pots so I’m not using those. Yet every single time, I’m still killing my plant. Please tell me what I’m doing wrong.

Compare that detailed response to the earlier ones … how to water, when to water, how much water. There really is no comparison. It is obvious that this person is having a real pain point and wants it solved.

After Ryan solved this problem, he grew his orchid care company to over $25,000 a month in under a year. Going from zero sales to over $25,000 a month is quite the jump and it is all because he was able to find out what the market actually needed.

So don’t simply build something you think your market wants. Build something they actually want. Figuring that out is hard work, but it is very important work to do.

Do the hard work. Get the good results.

So let me ask you…

When it comes to starting or growing your business, what is your biggest challenge?

Feel free to respond in the comments. Of course, you can always let me know via email as well.

If you’ve not joined my list, I invite you to do so. Simply respond to any of my emails as I read them all.

Should Christians Desire a Prosperous Business?

Money is the root of all evil. That’s what the Bible says, right?

Money is the root of all evil.

No. That’s NOT what the Bible says.

For the love of money is the root of evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.

1 Timothy 6:10

The Bible says, “for the LOVE of Money is the root of all evil”.

This article is written for Christian Dads who are considering starting their own business, but might be concerned about the reason why they want to start their own business.

I know sometimes, I have an idea and then later I’m thinking … “What was the motivation for that idea?”

Back in middle school, I knew I wanted to get into computers. A couple of years later, I was concerned that maybe I wanted to get into computers because there was potential to earn a large income. I struggled with my motives for a while, before realizing that when I first felt I should get into the industry it was long before I had any idea that it was a good career to go into in regards to salary ranges.

So why do you want to start your business?

Is it to provide income so you can provide for your family?

Is it to help others?

Is it because you see an opportunity, a problem to solve, a need that needs to be met?

Is it because you have a mission or a message you need to get out to the world?

Is it a desire to just do something more with your life?

Is it something else?

What is your reason? It’s not that one of these reasons is better or worse than another. And chances are you may want to start your business for a combination of these reasons.

Make sure that whatever your reason is, that you’ve spent time in prayer and that you’ve sought the Lord’s face on this matter.

Ask Him to make it clear to you if you should start a business or not, or if the business you are in is where He wants you to be.

Be willing to change directions if He makes it clear that you should do something different.

Running your own business is not easy. You may hear others suggest that it is easy. The motive is usually because they want to sell you something.

There is no such thing as an overnight success.

There is no such thing as “Get Rich Quick”.

But there is such a thing as producing a large income from having your own business. That’s a possibility and it’s a very real possibility.

Money itself is not evil. It’s amoral.

Money has no morals.

Much like a brick, money is just a tool.

You can take a brick and build an orphanage. Does that make it a good brick?

You can take a brick and throw it through a window. Does that make it a bad brick?

It’s just a brick. It’s just a tool that can be used.

Money is the same way. It’s neither good, nor is it bad.

If our desire is just to gain wealth, then that is a wrong motive. That’s serving ourselves instead of serving God. But there is nothing wrong with having money if we use it in the right ways.

We can use it to better our lives, and that is fine. But we can also use it by giving it.

If you are thinking of starting your business, but you are not tithing regularly, then I highly encourage you to start.

Don’t wait to earn some specific dollar amount before you start tithing.

Chances are that if you don’t give 10 cents out of a dollar, you won’t give a dollar out of ten dollars, or ten dollars out of a hundred, or a hundred dollars out of a thousand, or a thousand out of ten thousand, or ten thousand dollars out of a hundred thousand, or a hundred thousand dollars out of a million.

So where does the tithe go? It goes to your local church, the place you attend. That’s where your 10% goes. You can always give more as an offering to missions or other charities, but that first 10% goes to your local church.

Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed Me! But you say, ‘Wherein have we robbed Thee?’ In tithes and offerings.

– Malachi 3:8.

Don’t expect for your business to grow if you are robbing God.

Tithing is a command, and so is fasting. You’ll hear a lot more preachers talk about tithing and not speak on fasting all that much. Regardless, I encourage you to fast and pray to see if you should start a business, and what type of business you should start.

However, if your main goal is to increase your income, you may want to get a raise, different job, or a second job. It is easier to make money that way than working for yourself.

If you know you are supposed to start your own business, but are not sure what business is right for you, feel free to sign up for my free 5 Day Find Your Ideal Business Challenge. If it is closed when you read this, sign up for the waiting list so you can be notified when I run the challenge again. Plus, when you sign up for that waitlist, you’ll get a nice jumpstart in your email to help you in your journey.