The best start-ups solve a genuine 'pain' in consumers lives

Whether setting out to find a start-up idea, or refining and developing an existing one, the most important thing is to create the strongest foundations possible by being genuinely different, and by building a brand:
To thrive in business you have to be different – but that doesn’t mean you need to create the next Innocent drinks. Instead, look at the marketplace you want to enter and identify the weaknesses for the consumer in that marketplace. Then think how you can fix them by playing a different game to the competition, or simply by playing by different rules. As an example, James Dyson went and created a bagless cleaner when Hoover was still trying to make a more effective bag. Similarly, PayasUGym have completely uprooted the lucrative health club industry by doing pay-as-you-go gym membership. These brands have come along and stolen the show when the giants were sleeping, and by doing so  they have created completely new markets.
I absolutely revel in finding new brands and start-ups that are doing this, and my latest example is Ruby+Diva – the chic, unique wedding boutique. Frustrated by their own experience of planning two weddings (yes two, both to each other I might add) founders Sara and Rob set about creating an online marketplace where all the unique independent product and service suppliers could be found in one place. Brilliant. Check their new site out here. It doesn’t matter if you’re not planning a wedding either… with loads of suppliers already joined up to this great shop window, there is some amazing art (see their alternative gift list) and some great travel destination articles in their travel hot picks section. If you are planning a wedding, I’d suggest you sign up to win your wedding photography in their launch competition too.
A superb example of fixing a consumer pinch point – well done Ruby+Diva.