Do you have any business idea? Awesome. But, do you know what to do now? First of all, you must develop a business plan, that is, a written document where you describe what your business consists of, what sources and capacities you have to carry out it, what your purpose is, how you are going to get it and when you are going to achieve it.
For someone who has never done this kind of documents before, this could seem something complicated, but today we are going to explain how to develop a complete and effective business plan step by step, so you can attract potential investors:
- Executive summary: This is the most important part of the plan, as it has to be the hook for attracting investors and making them to support your idea. But keep an eye on the length, it should not have more than two pages if you do not want them to get bored and refuse a possible good idea. Be brief and persuasive.
- Description of the product and service: Describe in all details what your product or service will be, what characteristics it will have and, furthermore, what its differential value will be and what benefits it will be able to provide to consumers.
- Potential market and target audience: Describe the potencial market you would target (size, growth, trade barriers, possible tendencies and key factors for success). After that, divide it into segments and study its characteristics, consumption habits and key points to take into account. Do you want an advice? Keep always in mind the possible marketing action you will develop in the future.
- Competition: Analyze what you are doing now and what you have done before, visualize the possible strategies and opportunities you will be able to take. Your competitors’ weaknesses can be your greatest strenghts.
- Business model and development and implementation plan: What business model are you going to choose? What phase is it in currently? What are the next lines of action? Detail the actions and schedule them.
- Management team and organization chart: Investors focus on people, who will be responsible for bringing the business to success or not. Explain who will be part of the team, their experience and qualifications, showing that the skills required to develop the plan will be covered.
- Marketing Plan: Detail the marketing and communications strategies you will undertake to generate sales, in which media, when the objectives will be reached and what the purchase price will be for customers.
- Financial Plan: How much are you going to spend for the implementation and development of your Business? What is the forecast for the revenues for mid and long-term (from 3 to 5 years)? What financial needs will you have? Use table and charts to make information more attractive.
- Contingency plan: It is important to take into account the possible business and market’s risks and the alternative strategies (plan B) that will help you in case you have to reject any of them.
In conclusion, the Business plan is the document that will help you to analyze the options and resources to develop your business and get investors who will make your idea come true. Mind you, be realistic and objective when you do it, otherwise, it will come to nothing.
““Long-range planning does not deal with the future decisions, but with the future of present decisions.” Peter Drucker