8 Steps to Writing Your Business Plan (Guest Blog)
Before launching your company, use this article as both a cover letter and a way to organize your ideas.
For everything in your life you need a plan, right? The same is said for business. Every business, whether a startup or a valuable organization, needs a business plan. To know where you are going, you need to know where you came from and what happened before you. Here are some elements of a successful business plan.
1. Executive Summary. It is a summary of one or two pages of your business plan. It is best to do so when you have finished all the details of the plan.
2. Description of the business. You must include and define various aspects of service offers, the history of your field or any current event, your personal goals and objectives. This section is the backbone of your business plan and will set the stage for the rest of the information.
3. Products and services. They all have a product or service that they offer to a prospective customer. You must be able to describe what it is that you sell and identify what makes your product unique.
4. Sales and marketing. This section is very important. It opens the window to industry, the state of the market, general costs and gives you the opportunity to distinguish yourself from the competition. As you work in this section, understand that just as people pass by the physical store and see what happens inside the business, visitors to your website can also see your merchandise and recognize your personal branding.
Make your website your online store in thought and action.
- You can give samples or demonstrations of your product.
- Graphics and / or photographs of visual marketing material.
- The URL (web address) is your "location".
- The equipment you use and the methods of delivery of products are manufacturing and shipping tools.
- The navigation through the site is like a showcase of the physical store.
- If you have a site map you can help people find what they are looking for.
- If you show testimonials, affiliations and experience in accessible areas of your website the client will have more confidence.
Presenting your contact information allows people to do business with you. Giving detailed information about yourself, even if you are not in the presence of a potential client, gives the first impression of your personality. Instead of just thinking of your place as a rug to put your name on, improve it and veil it like an online store, the place where business is achieved.
5. Operations. The purpose of this section is to help you highlight the more administrative side of your business, including how you operate, where your office is, equipment, legal relationships, supplier network, etc.
6. Administrative team. If you have some counselors or people to help you run your business, this is where you need to understand their involvement and the capacity with which they contribute to your success. If there is a hierarchy of positions within your company, you must detail it and the relevancy of each relationship.
7. Development. This is where you can dream a little. Not everything in this section is based on facts as the information you would have given in the other sections. Project to the future and think big. Development is an important part of the business to remain competitive, so be sure to spend some time writing this.
8. Financial summary. Back to reality! You need to provide a history of your financial deals, investments and how you managed to have the position you have now. With some flexibility, you will know how your business will operate and you will see your financial status, including things balanced at the end of each month, health of your business and cash flow.
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