The importance of writing a business plan before starting your business cannot be overemphasized.
Because it gives you the opportunity to carefully think through the process of starting your business. And by so doing, you prepare for success.
To clearly put it, writing a business plan gives you the chance to discover any weaknesses in your business idea.
It also helps you identify opportunities you may not have considered initially, and plan how you will deal with challenges that are likely to come up in the future.
In addition to the advantages that come with writing a business plan, it is important to note that a well-written business plan can help convince investors or lenders to finance your business; interesting, right?
However, you should bear in mind that no matter what kind of business you intend running, keeping your client happy is key; because that is what is going to keep you profitable.
So, with this in mind, your first step in developing your business plan is to envision your client.
And apart from the prospective profit, a whole lot of factors which include your industry, your location, the nature of your business, whether you sell services or products, depends greatly on your client.
Here are 12 infallible guides to writing a successful business plan
1. Executive summary
This is where you have to summarize the elements of your business; and they include location, capital, products, and services, determining key business partners, as well as establishing business processes.
2. Company description
The company description is all about identification. It is where you introduce your readers to your company and your business concept.
3. Industry analysis
This is where you give a picture of your industry and of the position of your business within the larger framework.
4. Market and competition
This is where you take time to evaluate what you are getting into. It is more like a feasibility study.
However, there some business plans that separate market and competition; but ideally, it takes an examination of both, together, to come to one very important final conclusion.
5. Strategies and goals
This is where you analyze the market and your competition, as this will determine how and where your company or products or services fit.
And if you can get it right, it will enable you to maximize your position in your target market.
6. Products or services
Products or services come next to strategies and goals. And here is where you describe your products or services and how they match the findings of your strategies and goals.
7. Marketing and sales
This is where you draw up a plan to market your products or services with the best positioning. It also makes it possible for you to forecast your sales based on the findings of categories four, five, and six.
8. Management and organization
This is more like the engine room of every business. And it is here that you will come up with a plan that will perfectly take care of the management and organization of your business.
This is where you take time to explain how the business should always be run.
10. Financial Pro Formas
In this case, you assume there will be no increase in the cost of each item you are selling, but you will need 10 percent more items to sell in order to achieve your sales.
It is where you forecast successful financial performance for all activities
11. Financial requirement
After your Financial Pro Formas, your financial requirements should come next. And it is here that your plan will come up with the type and amount of financing needed based on the conclusions of the previous sections, to accomplish the whole plan.
This is more like a review; here you close the plan and sift through to separate any supporting materials that would interrupt the flow of the business plan.
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