Murder and Suicide Cleanup Business – WWPMM #5

Are you a fan of the show CSI? Do you like horror or zombie movies where you feel like, “The gorier the better?” If so, you might want to start a Murder Scene Clean-up business. (It’s not just for murders, they also do suicides.)

I’m not one for guts and gore. In fact, doing the research for this business made me realize I really didn’t want to write about it. However, I will leave you with a couple of links so that you can do your own research if you chose to.

As I’ve been doing research for the Weird Ways People Make Money (WWPMM) series, I’ve come to realize that each business idea has its own set of challenges. Some businesses have ethical issues. Others have the, “What will people think?” issue.

Some of the takeaways that I’ve had with all of these businesses are: is there a need to fill? Will people pay for it? Is it ethical? If it’s not ethical, is it illegal? And if it’s illegal, who says so and why? Can the laws be changed?

While doing research for murder scene clean-ups businesses, I ran across a place in Switzerland where you can go and commit suicide and they’ll clean everything up for you so your family doesn’t walk into the aftermath. There are some hoops you have to jump through and I don’t really want to write too much on the topic. But here’s the link if you want to look it up and I promise that the next episode of WWPMM will end on a happier note.

The Something Store –Weird Ways People Make Money #4

Sami Bayrakci was looking for a gift online for a friend when he came up empty. He thought, wouldn’t it be great if someone picked a fun, interesting gift for someone and for the added surprise they wouldn’t be told what it was. It would be a total surprise. This is how he came up with The Something Store idea.

Nine years later they have delivered thousands of “somethings” all over the world. The great thing is they do it for $10 which includes shipping. Who would have thought that a mystery grab-bag type business would work out?
Bayrakci says, “You should take a chance on your wacky idea! What do you have to lose?”

We’ve all heard that, “Most businesses fail within the first five years.” But you know what? You’ll never know if you don’t try. All of the businesses I’m profiling at the moment are a bit wacky, but they all work and they all make more money than I do sitting in a cubicle for 40 hours a week. Most of these business have one thing in common, they started small, then they grew and now others see the coolness that they saw all those years ago.

Start now moving toward your goal now and eventually you be where you want to be. Or you can stand around and do nothing and most likely still be where you are right now.

Weird Ways People Make Money #3 Potato Parcel

We’ve all had that, “Why didn’t I think of that,” moment. Well this next weird business idea is so far-fetched that I don’t think anyone would have thought that this was a good business to start – but we all would have been wrong.

The Potato Parcel is a company that ships potatoes to your doorsteps. And these aren’t just any potatoes. These potatoes have messages written on the with Sharpie markers. Some of them have pictures attached to them as well. Those are called Potato Pals.

Need a Mother’s Day gift? How about a potato that says, “Love you mom! From your little Spud.”

Or how about, “Happy Birthday Babe! Now cook this up for me.” I’m pretty sure this wouldn’t go over in my house and the website specifically says not to eat the potatoes.

Do you think this business is crazy? Well they sold over $200,000 worth of potatoes their first year and you can watch this video of two Sharks from Shark Tank fight over the idea.

The point of these posts are to show you that no idea is too crazy if you know how to sell and market something. Now get out there and figure out what your Potato Parcel is.

Weird Ways to Make Money #2 The Wedding Wagon

Continuing with my series on, “Weird Ways People Make Money,” today’s weird business is The Wedding Wagon in Las Vegas. The idea behind the Wedding Wagon is that anyone should be able to get married anywhere they want for an affordable price. How affordable? How about $129.00? (Flowers usually cost more than that.)

The Wedding Wagon is a fully decorated wedding on wheels. An Officiant and photographer will meet you at your location. The back of the van opens up for an elegant backdrop and that’s where the couple takes their vows.

Now granted, this business is in Las Vegas which is often called, “The wedding capital of the world.” (Side note, one of my brothers was married at Red Rock Canyon just outside of Las Vegas. The marriage didn’t last long though because unfortunately she went back to doing drugs.) Moving on…

Vegas weddings can be fun and whimsical. There are drive-in weddings, “Little Chapel” weddings and even weddings with an Elvis impersonator as the Officiant. This type of business model is great for Las Vegas, but what about other geographical locations around the U.S.? Would this idea work?

I happen to know a lady named Samantha who does, “pop-up weddings,” in St. Louis, MO. A pop-up wedding is usually a small wedding at a restaurant, park or scenic viewpoint where the bride and groom can invite their close friends and family, have a quick ceremony, have a little food and then get the heck out of there.

My friend who does these types of weddings usually charges about $2500 and has a 20 person max. All food is included and you also get a person to officiate the wedding. This is about 12 times cheaper than the average cost of a wedding these days, which is roughly $32,600.

The point is there are all kinds of ways you can make money. One of the many ways is through weddings. Whether it’s through pop-ups, DJing, Officiating, being the photographer, or the cater, weddings are usually once (or twice) in a lifetime events that people don’t mind paying for.

An interesting point here, the original guys who started The Wedding Wagon sold out. They thought they would franchise the idea. Unfortunately they didn’t plan the exit very well and then went to Shark Tank to try to sell the idea. If you’re interested, you can click here to see the rest of the story.

Weird Business #1 Boxcycle.com

This is the first article in a series that I’m going to write on weird business ideas that are making people money. If you think you have a good business idea, chances are you do. One thing for sure is your idea can’t be any crazier than some of the ones that I’ve been reading about.

For instance, www.boxcycle.com is a nationwide site that encourages people to recycle and buy used moving boxes. The site’s mission is to educate people that recycling boxes only helps landfills a little, whereas if we reuse them we have a more beneficial environmental impact. The site makes money when you order the boxes online and go pick them up at 100’s of participating locations.

Boxcycle started in San Francisco, but is available in most states. Just go to the site and enter your zip code. I did notice they are not available in Honolulu, HI yet, but they were available in the other six or seven states I entered into the box-finder filter.

My point of this short series is to show people that, maybe your business idea isn’t so crazy. Have some faith in yourself, do your homework to get yourself prepared and most importantly of all—START! Like now.