You're starting a business! Congratulations! But wait, you don't know how to make a business plan or where to start. What do you do? You have questions, concerns, and worries floating around in your head nonstop; it's enough to make anyone want to give up on the whole thing! But don't worry - we are here with a roadmap and tips for how YOU can create an outline that will help keep things organized and provide motivation when necessary.
You’re starting a business! Congratulations! But wait, you don’t know how to make a business plan or where to start. What do you do? You have questions, concerns, and worries floating around in your head nonstop; it’s enough to make anyone want to give up on the whole thing! But don’t worry – we are here with a roadmap and tips for how YOU can create an outline that will help keep things organized and provide motivation when necessary.
It can be helpful to have a step-by-step template to follow when creating your business plan. This blog post will guide you through each section of the business plan and provide everything needed for a great chance at success.
The Business Plan template consists of three parts: The Executive Summary, Description & Overview, Products/Services offered by your company as well as Market Analysis which includes Target Markets (geographic regions where customers live), Key Competitors in those markets, Competitive Advantage over those competitors. You’ll also want to cover Financial Information (revenue projections) and Management Team Qualifications on page three if applicable or relevant at this time; there are some optional sections included as well such as Milestones/Goals that can be added later when appropriate.”, “Business Plan” – Your First Step to Successful Entrepreneurship!
By this point, you should be past the brainstorming phase of what your business will be and what you are looking to achieve. These ideas need to go from your head into writing. They can be organized on paper so that you don’t forget anything significant about them – but this will require putting in some work first…
Still with me? Good, now draft a mission statement that encompasses your goals, values, and vision. It should outline what your company stands for while also containing why you are starting this venture in the first place.” Think of it as your own personal vow toward what you seek to achieve in your company. This will be a living, breathing document that you can repeatedly return to remind yourself why you do what you do.
If you don’t design your own life plan, chances are you’ll fall into someone else’s plan. And guess what they have planned for you? Not much.
– Jim Rohn
Now it’s time for the nuts and bolts of your business plan – this is where you’ll give specific details on what your company does, how it plans to make money, who are your target customers, and so much more!
All businesses need an executive summary. It should be no longer than one page, written in plain English or whatever so language applies, and easy to understand for anyone reading it. A good rule of thumb is that this document can be easily read to a 6th grader. “For example: If tea is your business, you might start with a sentence like this: “The world’s most delicious cup of tea awaits you at our new Serena’s Shop.”
This is where you will describe what your company does and why it matters. Give an overview of the offered products or services, the market size (i.e., how many people need this product), and a genuinely good value proposition. Really bring your ideal partner on a journey towards visualizing this magnificent tea shop. What makes your brand different from the competition besides your personal devotion to passion and award-winning customer service. This is where you have an opportunity to really stand out against the crowd.
Now that you’ve discovered how many clients are on the fence, it’s time to figure out who they’re buying for. In your plan, be sure to specify who your target audience is. This is a crucial step because you don’t want to spend time and hard-earned money on such key aspects as marketing and selling to the incorrect demographic with your next big age-defying tea. Imagine you put in all that effort, only to discover after all that hard work has been put in that most of this demographic only drink Red Bull and has little to no interest in tea. All that work went down the toilet, which will be a huge disappointment.
The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.
Here, you decide exactly what you’re attempting to solve. What issue are you trying to fix for your audience? Provide them with a solution they haven’t seen anywhere else. Offer something that will make their lives better or easier.
To make money, every business needs to answer this question: How do you plan on making a profit? This section of the business plan will outline your revenue streams and how you plan on generating income.
Again, I cannot stress enough how important it is to know your customers and why they buy from you. It’s good to have a target audience in mind but remember that not everyone will fit into this category, so make sure some of them don’t fall through the cracks! If we’re talking about tea, then maybe it could be people who enjoy drinking hot beverages on cold days or people who are looking for an organic option.
Now it’s time to put a dollar figure next to all of this! How much do you think it will cost you to bring your vision to life? You’ll need these other elements to understand your company’s financial needs when you’re putting the components of your creation together, just as Dr. Frankenstein needed those essential parts to make his vision a reality. I am not saying you need to go on a rooftop and yell, “it’s alive!” but make sure that you have a good grasp of what it will take from start until finish. This section should detail all start-up costs, monthly expenses, and projected revenue.
Did You know:
“Around 82% of entrepreneurs self-funded.” This means that even the most successful among us still experience some bumps along our paths towards success (and don’t worry; there is always room at or beyond knocking down those potholes).
This final section is vital because it tells others whether or not your idea is feasible. It summarizes everything outlined in the previous sections and paints a clear picture for potential investors (or yourself). This is also where you outline how much money you will need to get started and maintain your business on a day-to-day basis. Include things like salaries, rent, and other overhead costs.
Now that you have a solid base of information in front of you, it’s time to get started on your business plan! This document is an essential piece of your business puzzle and will help keep everything organized and track. Think of this plan like Jarvis to Tony Stark or Rocky Balboa to Micky’s training regime. One works better with the other’s assistance. It also serves as a reference point for yourself down the road to look back and see how far your business has come. So, get to it!
To Sum It All Up
Market analysis and competition
Products or services offered
Target audience and marketing strategy
What problem are you solving for your audience?
Offer a solution that they can’t find anywhere else.
How do you plan on making a profit?
Funding requirements and financial projections.
We’re going to change the world! I know it may sound lofty, but this effort toward empowerment, education, and inspiration is something that needs your help. It might even give you a little inspiration on what we can achieve when working together as one team towards these goals. So please share our article with friends/family members who could benefit from reading it. The first step usually isn’t easy; however, thanks for being part of my journey, and keep in mind that the best is yet to come.
What are your best tips for getting a business plan approved? Please share them in the comments below. This has been “Do you have a successful business plan? Your competitors do.” I hope it was helpful.