As you set out to start your business, your business plan can guide your path to success – with a road map to how you plan to run your business and make money. This is why it’s so important to not just have a business plan, but to have a strong one. Here are 7 tips to help you go about developing a great plan to set yourself off on the right path from the very beginning.
One size doesn’t fit all.When it comes to business plans, there are different kinds. Some are specifically written for investors or financial institutions, and others are written to help encourage people to join a board of directors or advisors. Be clear about the goal of your plan, and write with that in mind.
Your executive summary, the very first section of a business plan, needs to clearly outline who you are and what you hope to do. It needs to grab the attention of the reader of the plan – and convince them to take action, whether that is to invest, join you or partner with you.
Especially when writing a business plan for your investors or lenders, including industry statistics can help add credibility to your gross profit, inventory and financial projections. These benchmarks can help prove that you are knowledgeable and aware of the current market.
You are only one person – and even if you have a team, each person on your team only has so many hours in a day to get the job done. As you put together your timelines and resource needs, be realistic about how much you can get done in any given week or month. Overestimate the time needed to get each thing done so that you don’t fall behind schedule.
Increase cost projections, decrease revenue projections.
This may not seem like it makes sense, but costs will often be higher than you expect – and if you under-predict revenue can give you a better idea of what to expect and if (or when) you exceed those projected numbers, you’ll have more cash to continue growing the business.
Use visuals to tell your story.
When you include visuals, like charts to explain your financials or product images of what you are going to sell, it can better convince people to get involved in your business in the way you are asking them to. People often better understand information in a visual format over a strictly written plan.
Pay attention to the details.
It’s often said that success is in the details. And it’s true, especially with your business plan. As you prepare your plan, read and reread it to ensure all the details are in place and all spelling and grammar is correct.
Work with an expert from Bargain Business Plan, who has helped thousands of business owners just like you get the right information together so their business plan can help them land funding, launch a business and find success over those critical first few years. Get in touch today to learn how we can help.