As always, tapping into that collective spirit is the key challenge for entrepreneurs. The new age represents a vital opportunity for almost any business, whether directly (through book publishing or spiritual consulting) or indirectly, by adapting your business to principles of social conscience and spiritual balance.
Don't limit your thinking to traditional stereotypes about New Age. "You can't expect everyone in this market to be wearing Birkenstock sandals and hanging out at a health-food store," says Oliver.
Unconventional marriages of, say, New Age concepts with technology can work brilliantly. For example, New York City-based educational software publisher Enteractive Inc. launched two interactive CD-ROM titles: Enchanted Tarot and The Alchemist. Computerized tarot? "What we saw was a high correlation between this market and computer use," says Randy Hujar of Enteractive. "Here was a market that was untapped and available." Though Enteractive declines to release sales, they report being "pleased" with the numbers so far.
The lesson here: This is a market of affluent, knowledgeable consumers with plenty of unmet needs. A new millennium shimmers on the horizon. An entire segment of society is looking ahead to a new age--and looking around for the products and services they'll need to help them reach it. Could you be the one to fill that need?