If you’re like most entrepreneurs, the idea of starting a business was planted many years ago perhaps in your youth. Owning a business can be a lucrative endeavor. Though you know it will be challenging, you’re willing to put in the time and effort to make your dreams come true. Before you kick off your new business, you’ll probably need some funding, and before you can qualify for a business loan, you need a business plan. Once you can present a lender with an effective, well-thought-out plan, a financial institution is more likely to lend you the money you need.
Have Some Proof
Some prospective business owners like to go over the top in writing their plans. Be careful about making bold statements. It’s OK to say things such as my business is going to be the market leader or my products will outsell everyone else’s, but you need evidence or data to support your claims. Be specific, and explain specifically how these things will occur. Facts and figures will go a long way in convincing the audience that you’re on your way to greatness.
Understand the Competition
In your business plan, it’ll be crucial to explain what will set you apart from your competitors. Regardless of what goods and services you intend to provide, you need to show why customers would want to choose you over a more established company on the other corner. In order to express this, you need to learn all you can about your competitors. Pick them apart and explain why you’ll be a better choice.
Go on the Conservative Side
Sure, your ultimate goals are high, and you want to be the foremost provider of whatever it is you’ll market. But be wary of high financial projections. You don’t want to set yourself up for failure right off the bat. Be realistic. A lender or other financial backer won’t hold it against you if you don’t include pie-in-the-sky dreams.
In your business plan, you will describe what your business is, what you will sell and market, and what your customer base will look like. Don’t be vague in this description. Lay everything out in the plan and include every facet of your business down to the smallest details. You should even give an overview of what your workspace looks like.
Your business plan is a critical step in not only getting your business underway but in obtaining small business funding. Use these tips to put together an effective plan.