Via Devon Live : Planning on starting a business in the new year? Every startup needs a business plan, says Jamie Christoforou, Director, Tamar Telecommunications.
Your business plan will be the foundation of what your business is, does and is going to be. Having a business plan will help you along the way by providing something to constantly read back on to make sure you’re heading in the right direction.
Filling out your business plan isn’t just putting words on a piece of paper. Really make this work for you, do market research, find your customer base and trial your product where possible. You could get feedback from friends and family, ask them to see what their work colleagues think. Your business plan should be months, even years of research on how you are making your business idea work. Here are a few things to think about:
Keep it simple, make it understandable and think about who is going to be reading your business plan. Although it is written by you, for you, your business plan needs to be understood by potential supporters or investors. Ask friends and family to read over it and see if they needed any help understanding anything, if they do you may want to consider rewording or simplifying that section.
Offer what your competitors cannot. What are they doing well? Where are they failing their customers? Fill the gaps and give your customers a reason to choose your business.
Explain your business. What it is, does and has done. Explain how your business will stand out and what will be your unique selling points. Clearly show all your market research and how you are making your business work.
The Skill Set
Investors need to know who they are investing in. Tell them your skills and the skills of anyone else within the business. Show investors you are the right people get this business to its true potential.
The Sales Strategy
Without a sales strategy there is no business, so go into detail here. Show how you will market, explain how you will sell and work out what your profit margins are going to be.
The more you can include here the better. Make realistic forecasts for sales, include cashflow forecasts, profit and loss forecasts where possible and balance sheets.
Writing a business plan isn’t a chore but an essential and exciting part of starting your business. Make the most of any opportunities you have available to make your plan as realistic and detailed as possible.