Chameleon cage business (much like a saltwater fish tank business)

Discussion in 'Growing and Managing a Business' started by ChameleonKing, Sep 10, 2011.

  1. ChameleonKing

    ChameleonKing
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    Ok, as for the introduction. Hi I'm Josh from Tampa FL. I'm skilled in a few useful trades and great with reptiles.

    I have a unique business idea that I thought you guys could critique. As a kicker rich businessmen like yourselves are who I would be marketing to, so you can tell me what you think on that level as well.

    The summary of my business idea is I put a beautiful chameleon in someones office and they pay me for setup and
    weekly maintenance. Let me get more into detail.

    I would design a chameleon enclosure out of high end wood to match their office. I would then landscape it with living
    plants and put a male chameleon in it. I will have an automatic mister on a timer, as misting a couple times a day is
    crucial as chameleons don't drink from a bowl. I would also include all of the lighting the chameleon needs to survive,
    that would be on a timer as well. Chameleon cages are huge, but more tall. It wouldn't be so huge it's intrusive like a lot
    of saltwater fishtanks are. I would have to charge between $1000-$1500 for the initial setup.

    I would have to maintain it once a week. This would include filling the mister, cleaning the enclosure, taking care of the
    chameleons veterinary needs, and setting up food for the week. The bottom part of the enclosure is where I would keep
    the food (bugs) in separate disposable containers. I would set it up in a way where they would live until they're fed to the chameleon. This way the customer would never have to touch bugs, all they do is open the container and empty it into the chameleons enclosure. This service would cost $50 a week.

    The chameleon owners responsibilities would be to empty food into it's tank and water the live plants every day. That's it. I would do the rest.

    I've got keeping the chameleon alive figured out. Not going to go into that too much, as this is a business advice forum
    and you guys probably don't care about that element.

    I suppose mainly I will be competing with the saltwater fish tank maintenance business.

    So how does this idea sound?
     
  2. ChameleonKing

    ChameleonKing
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    Sorry about the format by the way. I don't think this website works well with my browser.
     
  3. JBMedia

    JBMedia
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    Welcome to BAF ChameleonKing! Honestly, it's not a bad idea at all, and I have a pretty good visual on the products you're trying to produce for your consumers being as all of my friends have had chameleons in their past.

    Here's some advice I would offer, and I will admit, a lot of it can sound general, but it will more than likely help you get kick started.

    Being how you're going to have a new business here, it's always a great idea to offer promotional prices. You can send out fliers, make newspaper ads, and so on. Have the initial set-up pricing of your choice between $1,000-$1,500 USD and have a cross going through it. Then have an ad saying a promotional effort for the upcoming business, you can get the initial set-up for $750, or whatever sounds fair. You want to make sure it's a decent amount taken off the top so that your consumers get the idea in their heads that they're getting a killer deal. You could also offer a promotional service saying first month or two of maintenance is free. Keep in mind, according to their specifications of the cage, you want to make sure you still bring home a little profit, but in the beginning can cut the first purchasers some sort of deal.

    Then more business will start coming forth, because people will comment on the lovely design, the animals, and so forth. As long as you make sure you provide a premiere service, you'll almost always get good word of mouth going around about your company. Which, in my own personal opinion is the best way for getting "free" referrals towards your products and services.

    Out of curiosity, you said you were considering pitching this idea to investors? Do you live in a big city by any chance? The reason why I ask this is because more than likely you won't get any amazing investments in a business like this unless there is a lot of office areas. At least, that's what I'm assuming the market is that you're planning on going after.

    None the less, your idea is definitely not a bad one. If this is something you really feel will work and you feel passionate about, go all the way with it and don't give up until you bust. Just keep in mind, with any business, it's always good to set-up a financial plan ahead of time to where you can make sure it's profitable and you're not killing yourself with work for free.

    I hope this helps some.
     
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  4. ChameleonKing

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    I probably won't need any investors other than my family members who would invest. I live in Tampa where there is plenty of offices. My dad has run his own business in the area for longer than I've been alive, so I should have my foot in the door as he's most likely going to tell all of his associates about this shortly after I get it started.

    I like the promotional idea a lot. I think the service is where I would make the bulk of the money anyhow so why not knock a chunk off of the startup costs so I can get a bunch of people on the service?

    I'm going to write up a business plan for this after I conduct my test experiment as to how I'm going to deal with people leaving for the weekend and such, but I think I've got that figured out.

    Thanks for the advice, helps a lot.
     
  5. Hurbel2k

    Hurbel2k
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    Disclaimer: I'm 99% a online person, but I feel like I can give some advice anyways, because... well I just because I am I. /Disclaimer

    $US 1.500 is not cheap, and you already said you want to use highest quality materials and target high value customers, or in other words, offices. Does that ring a bell?

    Here is what I would do:
    - Set the price at $US 15.000 and a yearly cleaning all inclusive fee for $US 1000
    - Make the whole thing a piece of art. Don't just make a chameleon cage, make it out of representative wood, use golden nails for the extra bling.
    - Did I say Art? One prominent piece of the cage interior is a hand carved piece of wood, it shows the name of the customers company.
    - At a extra cost you also carve stones
    - You don't just set up a representative cage with some chameleons. You do increase the customers luck by adding a lucky animal.
    - Your art increases feng shui.
    - A stone from the Himalayas inside your piece of art focus positive energy.

    Here is how you start:
    Build one such piece of art, set it up in your dads office. Of course in a place where all the customers pass by. He doesn't need to tell everyone. But if it is really well done, your dad's customers will ask where he got his chameleon form. He will then say, he got it from a local artist and feng shui master.

    I'm not sure about the offline world, but that's what I would do.
     
    #5 Hurbel2k, Sep 10, 2011
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2011

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