If you have been wondering how to write an effective business plan that you can use to smoothly run your business, win investors’ confidence and investment, and maintain entrepreneurial success, then you have come to the right place!
Irrespective of the purposes you want to utilize your business plan for, you will need to focus on the following steps in order to design and produce the most useful and powerful business plan:
- Recognize the importance of a business plan - It is important that you identify why you need a business plan in the first instance. This is because there are different kinds of businesses serving different business purposes. You may need to design a mini business plan, a presentation plan, a pitch deck, an operational business plan, or a recovery plan.
- Understand the financials of your proposed or existing business - You need to familiarize yourself with your business’s financials. This entails that you should have a deep understanding of how much it will initially cost you to run the business, and what are your projected sales, revenue, and profitability levels. All these pieces must go into your business plan to make it effective.
- Write your marketing and operational plan - Your business plan won’t be practically useful if it doesn’t contain your marketing and operational plans. Your marketing plan is the blueprint for setting up efficient marketing campaigns, and your operational plan is the guide you will need to successfully manage your entire day-to-day business activities.
- Do your market analysis - You cannot dabble in a market you know nothing about. It is through your market analysis that you will be able to discover the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats (SWOT) in the market for or against your business.
- Write your business plan - After you have acquainted yourself with the financials of your business, prepared your marketing and operational plans, and conducted your market analysis, you will still be required to put all these essential parts of your business plan together in writing. You have to make sure you are designing a business plan that is error-free, easy to digest, fundamentally informative, and detail-oriented. You want your prospective business partner or investor to quickly obtain any vital information they want from the business plan without sweating over it.
- Customize your business plan - You should understand that different kinds of businesses require different types of business plans. In other words, even though all businesses contain the same important elements, they come with different approaches. So, if you are running a nonprofit, a manufacturing service, or a project management business, it is imperative that you tweak your business plan to highlight the significant aspects of your business. Therefore, you will expect to see different areas of emphasis in each type of business plan based on your field or industry.
Eight Elements of Every Useful Business Plan
Look out for these eight essential elements of a powerful business plan:
- Executive summary: This is the summary of all the content in your business plan. It should be between one or one-and-a-half pages.
- Company Overview: Here, you provide an overview of your business to the readers.
- Business description: It is expedient that you fully describe your business and its products or services in the plan.
- Market analysis: This is where you will provide detailed information about the market your business will be serving by revealing how well-positioned your business is in the market.
- Operation plan: You are required to provide the detailed, actionable steps or processes you will adopt in running your business’s day-to-day operations. An operational plan is part of a strategic plan. A strategic plan is a process of creating goals, plans, and actions that guide a company toward its destination. Read more about Business Strategy in our blog Business Strategy Essentials 101.
- Marketing and Sales Plan: Tell the world how you plan to market your products/services. Are you going to use the traditional methods of marketing or will you be experimenting with digital marketing? The goal is to be able to get your products/services in front of those who most need them and increase your sales.
- Financial plan: Provide a snapshot of information about your business’s finances. Where will you get the money to start and run the business? How much profit do you project to make in the first three years?
- Appendix: This contains all additional or supporting documents or information about your business.
Business Plan Essentials explains in detail all the essential steps highlighted above, with real-world examples, sample business plans, and an easy-to-understand language. You will also discover how best to write a business plan and consequently overcome your fear of sitting down to actually write one! Read the Advance Review Copy of Business Plan Essentials here!