Hi all. I've got my idea laid out in a Google doc. I have wireframes, requirements, constraints, the business case, and overall theory on why the idea would work. All I'm really looking for is other like minded people to take a look at it and let me know what their thoughts are. Wheres the best place to do this? Is this considered self promotion? Are there IP concerns I should get sorted out before doing this kind of thing? Thanks for your help.
It depends on the depth and source of feedback you're trying to find.
If you're looking for business model feedback from other founders, I'd recommend either the online groups mentioned in other answers, or attending local entrepreneur Meetups and casually bringing up your idea in 1:1 conversation. It's easier to get unfiltered feedback if you present it as a friend's idea and not your own. :)
If you're looking for a gut-check reaction from potential users, you could use something like PickFu (disclaimer: I run it). It's good for fast feedback on products and ideas (example here).
That's a great point. There really isn't a place out there to shoot around ideas. I've tried to solve that kind of thing by creating a marketplace, but yes, a lot of people will have the same concerns about their IP. I've actually just created a group on LinkedIN to share ideas, but it just started. Not sure whether you want to post at least some of your questions there. I'm trying to get a good balance between start-up business people and tech people on the group. Check it out: https://www.linkedin.com/groups/8660673. It's called "Start-Ups: Where Business Meets Technology"
Other than that, I would say find some people you trust to chat about the idea. Determine who you'd like to talk to, perhaps future users, and search for people on LinkedIN to discuss. I've done that in the past with a few of my ideas.
The typical place to validate your idea is by interviewing your potential customers. Unfortunately you get bad answers when you ask people what they would do. If you can get at the necessary information by asking what they do today, you'll have a much more reliable answer. What do you do to solve X today? What problems do you run into when you solve X? What have you asked for help with on X? Where do you look for help with X? What have you spent trying to accomplish X? These types of questions generate more reliable answers that you can count on, descriptions of actual behavior instead of speculation.
It might be nice to add on some specific questions about what if... But the primary questions need to be about what they already do. It can be supplemented by what they might do. Don't miss the chance to have them poke holes in your new idea, just don't count on them to behave as they speculate.
IP concerns? I don't know that there is anything proprietary about what you plan to do that could be protected. You can always discuss with an IP attorney if you feel there might be something worth protecting. Generally it's worth very few people's time to do all the work to take someone's idea and make something of it. The people you'll be talking to, mostly the potential customers for this new product/service, are not going to get into the business you're proposing. They're already doing their own thing.
It doesnt particularly seem like self-promotion if it is at that level of detail. You would be taking some risk that others could use your idea, but the idea is not as important as execution- so not a huge concern. The big roadblock is that there isnt specifically any place you can submit your business model and have people commit the time to review and give feedback. Most people may be willing to answer a few questions, i think.
Usually, App ideas have no IP concerns unless you're dealing with some private data like healthcare etc.
You can discuss your idea with the people already earning/ playing in the app business field; there are some sites also but not sure how good they are in scrutinizing the idea.
There are some more worthy consultants or investors who can judge your idea, but they ain't going to see just the idea; they would like to see a working app before investing or judging.
You can however, discuss this with mobile consultants like myself; I've been consulting startups for idea validation, revenue model, and app development since 9 years. Just send me a message or email and we can take this forward.
The best bet to check your idea's viability is to actually launch with "reduced features" and in low cost and test the waters; if it works then invest more if it doesn't then you learn a lesson at a lesser cost at the same time you'd repent that you didn't do that. I help companies doing that all the time. :)