The first thing you need to know is that the business plan is vital whether you are looking for investors, applying for a loan, wanting to know the viability of your business idea or simply wanting to improve your current business. It is like the passport of your business and with all that this entails: obtaining it, updating it periodically, etc. Unfortunately, the business plan is like the income statement, you know you have to do it but either you don’t know how or you simply don’t feel like it because of how laborious it is.
7 Steps to make your Business Plan:
1. Details of the company
In this first section you have to make a brief description of some basic details of your company, such as the commercial name, the location or the type of entity with which you plan to create the company.
2. Executive summary
In this section you have to describe the most relevant data about your company as a summary . Start by revealing the mission of your company, the sector in which you are going to operate, your purpose and define exactly what you are going to offer, be it a product or a service.
It is interesting that your mission reflects the work of your company in the market. Asking yourself the following questions will help you define your company’s mission: what do we do? What is our business? What do we do? What is our reason for being? Who is our target audience? What is our geographical scope of action? What is our competitive advantage? What differentiates us from our competitors?
You can also look for examples of mission statements from well-known companies to get ideas.
3. Market analysis
In this section you have to give information about the market you are targeting. It is very important to describe very well who your client is, whether it is a company or an individual.
Identifying your ideal client is crucial for your business to be viable , and it is the biggest stumbling block you will encounter on your path to success.
Likewise, you have to estimate your potential market, for example, if your product is bicycles, it is estimated that around 1 million bicycles are sold in Spanish territory each year. To arrive at these figures, it is recommended to search the internet in official organizations.
Finally, do not forget to analyze your competition, detailing all existing competitors, and describing the aspects that differentiate them from your company. In this way, you will show that you are ready to compete.
4. Marketing plan
This section contains information on the company’s strategy to make itself known in the market . To do this, make a list of the marketing techniques that you will use to sell your product or service, such as promotion on social networks, email marketing, television ads, search engine ads, etc. and on the other hand it explains the sales methods that your company will use, such as online or through a commercial establishment.
Do not forget to do an exhaustive search for marketing techniques since there are many and new ones appear every day with better efficiency.
5. Human team
In this section you have to give information about the people involved in the project. It is vital to detail the shareholding percentages of the partners as well as the role they are going to play in the company.
Likewise, it is highly recommended to include a brief description of the professional experience, studies and skills that make each of the company’s partners unique. In addition, you have to make a list of the employees that your company will need during the first years of life.
6. Financial plan
This section collects the financial information to understand if your project is profitable. For this you will need to make a financial plan of between 3 and 5 years and an investment plan indicating the investments in assets that your company will initially make . Regarding the sales forecasts that you have to make in the financial plan, we recommend not presenting sales forecasts that are too optimistic, but rather as realistic as possible. Think that banks or potential investors already understand that every business needs time to start.
7. SWOT analysis and long-term objectives
Finally, any business plan worth its salt must include a SWOT analysis and a short list of the company’s long-term goals. The main objective of a SWOT analysis is to help you evaluate the Weaknesses, Threats, Strengths and Opportunities of your company.