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How's my business idea?

  1. Jun 2, 2008 #1
    Today nail salons have spa chairs and I want to start a company that makes entertainment system that could be mounted to those spa chairs. The system consists of a 7" to 10" touch screen LCD and a mini computer. With this system and user friendly software, the users can surf the web, play video, music and games. Because of the touchscreen, they could just use their fingers and not have to use a mouse or keyboard. The cost for each system will be at least $400. I'm close to finish developing fully functional system.

    I know this is a broad and non specific question, but how should I market a product like this? Is it even a good idea ? I'm thinking maybe setting up booth at conventions and store to store selling.
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 2, 2008 #2


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    Have you done any research to see whether these would be popular? I'd imagine that if they were popular, then they would have been made by now (the idea seems pretty much identical to the "on demand" tv screens that have been available on planes for a while).
  4. Jun 2, 2008 #3
    Yes it is similar to entertainment system on airplanes. I'm having trouble finding ways to market research this idea.
  5. Jun 2, 2008 #4


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    Aproach a local salon and ask.
    The main problem is likely to be licencing rather than technical.
    Just showing local cable/broadcast TV is going to require some sort of licence - similair (but more expensive) to the licence the shop already pays to have music playing.
    Sometimes a large chain will buy rights to the music directly and use the same tape in all their stores - this is probably a better model since you could target particular ads at your 'captive' market. The problem would be getting enough installed seats to give you negotating power with the MPAA.
  6. Jun 2, 2008 #5
    Are you sure that you need a license to publicly show broadcast TV in the USA? If so, it is ridiculous.
  7. Jun 5, 2008 #6


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    As is sueing someone for $1.5M for copying a CD they own to an MP3 player - welcome to the world of the MPAA and RIAA.

    I don't know the detailed law in the US, but in the UK it costs £90/year to the Performing Rights Society to play commercial broadcast radio in a small shop or to use it as on-hold music on a phone system.
    They are then supposed to pay it to the artists under some complicated scheme but in fact almost all the money goes on administering the system.
  8. Jun 5, 2008 #7

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    hmmm.. I see two problems:

    1) Wet nail polish getting on the touch screen
    2) Manicures getting ruined when this happens

    would be fine for pedicures, though.
  9. Jun 5, 2008 #8
    Im going to steal your idea and make then in china for $50 a chair!

  10. Jun 5, 2008 #9


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    I was thinking the same. Also, where would the screen be located? It can't be between the manicurist and client, or else they can't talk if it's in the way. What about the sound? Do you have a bunch of TVs all competing within a few feet of each other, or do they have to fumble with earphones/earbuds with wet nails?

    I haven't noticed too much demand for a TV in a salon other than maybe in the waiting area (then again, I don't frequent salons much).

    Though, if you can find a way to position it inside of or near those head-swallowing hair dryers along with some way to hear it over the noise of those things, I could see something like that being popular while you're trapped under one of those things unable to hear any conversation around you.
  11. Jun 5, 2008 #10
    Do keep in mind...

    Personally, I would not try to start a business in the current economy.

    If you are going to proceed, though, I'd suggest more than one feasibility study and/or business plan be developed and heavily vetted by disinterested parties... just to keep you safe.

    Keep in mind the average profit for retail businesses that do not fail is 8%, and many have three years in the red before showing dime one of profit.

    I don't mean to discourage you, but failing businesses and lost money are enormously depressing--- better to avoid these outcomes if possible.
  12. Jun 5, 2008 #11
    Yes well the MPAA and RIAA can kiss my shiny white ass. Seriously, who's gonna stop doing ripping their CD's?
  13. Jun 7, 2008 #12


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    Not for airwave broadcasts, but if you're purchasing cable or satellite broadcasts, you'll pay a sliding rate based on the seating capacity of your place. I purchased sports packages for two bars last year, one with a 65-seat capacity and the other with an 85-seat capacity, and prices ranged from 10-15 times what an individual would pay for the same viewing rights.

    You don't have to put television broadcasts on these devices, though. You could put proprietary games on them, and negotiate separate deals with individual game developers, and sell 30-second ad loops, including loops that the businesses you're placing the devices in could use themselves to market their other products and services. The added revenue stream would probably make your business more attractive to investors, but I'm still not sure how I feel about the overall viability of placing any type of individualized entertainment in the hands of spa and salon patrons. More often than not, they're there to relax or chat, I'd think.

    Still, you may as well try it, and see if you can get anyone to purchase the things. If it doesn't work out in spas and salons, seek out other venues. Maybe sports stadiums, commuter trains, hospital waiting rooms. Think of any place people might get bored and stuck in a seat.
  14. Jun 7, 2008 #13
    I can get them from China for $25 a chair! But my guy says that the materials they use make you crap your pants instantly:uhh:
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