So, you have decided to start a new stage in life, and you got inspiration and an idea for your business. To successfully bring your concept to life, you should start by drawing up a business plan.
It is a document that contains a description of a company’s development strategy, an analysis of existing problems, and steps to solve them. If competently drafted, such a document gives a clear answer to the main business question —”Does it make sense to invest in this business?” A plan can be issued both in paper and electronic form and intended for both internal and external purposes. A well-thought-out marketing plan is a key to the success of any entrepreneur, no matter what goals they set — from attracting investments to the strategic development of their company. For a budding entrepreneur, formulating a business plan is not an easy task. To write it correctly, you need to dive deeply into the industry, understand key financial indicators, and also be able to assess the market and its prospects.
Basically, a business plan should be about 30 pages to make it convenient to read while consisting of the following sections:
- product (service) description
- sales market analysis
- competitor assessment
- marketing strategy
- production plan
- organizational and financial plans
In addition to formal documentation, do not forget about the creative component. For example, shoot a short video. Also can make a conference to represent your business, use conference flyers to create nice flyers. Combine images, fonts, and stickers to present your project in the best possible way.
Two Types of Plans Explained
There are two types of business plans, depending on the purpose. The first one is for internal use and the second one is for external use, such as obtaining loans, attracting investments, receiving subsidies and tax incentives.
An internal business development plan is drawn up to achieve maximum efficiency from the implementation of an idea. It covers actions to achieve certain indicators. This option should include information about the resources already available and those to be yet obtained. Data on financial, human, and production resources help the company’s employees to make management decisions. This plan should also contain as many alternatives as possible while trying to focus on the best ones. Before drawing it up, you should organize marketing research to study a new product, project, or direction in the company’s activities. It is necessary to analyze the prospects of a new project, to identify its main pros and cons, as well as distinctive features. Consider also the situation in the segment and the entire market.
A plan for external use is a formal document, which has specific design standards. It is the most complete version of the company’s development strategy. Since the document is intended for reading by individuals outside the organization, maximum attention should be paid to detailed elaboration of all its points. With this type of plan, you will be able to attract investors, new employees, or people for cooperation. You can search for them on the social network LinkedIn, which is aimed solely at expanding your work contacts and career growth.
What to Include
In any case, you should start with a clear and concise statement of the plan’s purpose. Get to know and understand your target audience from the inside. Write the business plan in a language that the people who will consume the product can understand. Focus on investors. Describe your product as simply as possible and avoid complex terms. It is better to submit detailed information in supplements. In this section, you can also provide links to used sources or place full versions of calculation tables. It can comprise certificates and research results, as well as other documents related to products.
An important role is played by the resume because if it does not hook the investors, they do not want to read the entire plan. In the best case, it should fit in one or two pages. At the very top, under the name of your company, describe the essence of your business in one sentence. You can simply state what your company does or write a slogan if it conveys the idea. Then, in a few sentences, describe the market problem you are going to solve. Your product must be the solution. Create an image of your “ideal buyer”, that is, describe the potential customers. The next point is to mention the competition and your ways to counter it. Provide information about your employees and state the reasons why your team can successfully implement the idea. Showcase your projected sales, costs, and profitability with visual tools (graphs, charts, etc.). If you are looking for funds to start or grow your business, you should describe your needs in a separate paragraph of your resume.
Long Story Short
To summarize the steps, the first thing that should be polished is a resume – concise but informative. The full plan shouldn’t grow to 50 pages; try to fit it into 30 pages. Present information in a language understandable to the target audience, avoiding an excess of professional terms. Do not forget to include information about financing if you are looking for investors. Good luck!
Author – Katherine
Crello SEO manager, copywriter and digital marketing specialist, currently working with competitive niches and specific geo.