Whether you own an expansive business or a small trading firm, every business should have a business plan. Not the one that lingers in your mind but it must be written so that your partners can better understand your strategies and direction. A written business plan also acts as a definite reference for potential investors to your business venture. Business owners are probably good at kicking off their business ventures, but many desires to perfectly write down a business plan.
A written business plan should have the basics such as an executive summary, the company description, organisation structure, product offering and appendix section for permits or certifications. Ideally, a well-written business plan should include the following factors such as market analysis, marketing and sales strategy, funding appeal and financial projections. Investors are keen to invest in businesses with straightforward goals and objectives.
Now that you have an idea of what entails a flawlessly written business plan let’s begin the process of writing it down.
Step One: Research and Analysis
Start by researching and analysing your product, its effectiveness, your market segment, your target audience, your customer persona(s), your competitors and the industry. Get into the tiniest details of your research and exhaust every nook and corner to get a thorough market analysis. It is your business. Hence, you must know everything about it. You can get insights from reading as well as talking to your audience.
Step Two: Purpose of the Plan
A written business plan is a document that describes the business nature, marketing strategy and financial background as well as projection of profit and loss. A business plan can also serve other purposes such as a road map with directions for the business or to attract investors to invest in your company. Keep in mind, whatever the intention of your business plan is, it should define the goals convincingly.
Step Three: Prepare A Company Profile
The first part of a business plan must highlight the primary contents. It usually consists of the vision statement, mission and objective of the company. It is commonly found in the company’s official website. It serves as an introduction of the company to the customers, investors and talents.
Step Four: Document Everything
This may be tedious, but worth every penny and effort because investors will want to know everything about your business. By documenting everything, investors can easily access whether your business is worth their penny.
Step Five: Marketing Strategy
An excellent written business plan should ideally contain a marketing strategy plan, as well. If you are serious about your business and its product offerings, your marketing plan should reflect that. You would need to define marketing objectives in line with your business growth, market environment and consumer requirements. Your marketing strategy should also include the latest marketing strategies used in this day and age. It must be complete from strategy, targets, budgets to the flexibility of implementation.
Step Six: Adaptability
Your business plan will be viewed and read by people from different backgrounds. Investors will be interested in the business concept and management. Funders will want to know the details of balance sheets and cash flow. Employees or managers will use the business plan to understand and embrace the objectives. Knowing your audience will work wonders in your business plan.
Final Step: Create an Emotional Connection
Who says a business plan is a dull and boring paperwork? You can create an emotional connection with your written business plan. You can start by explaining your passion and dedication towards this business every step of the way. Be genuine, and your written expression will show through in the business plan.