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The business world is changing year on year – nothing stays the same for too long these days, what with the major advancements in technology and how fast everything is moving overall. Creating a business plan used to be about looking ahead to the next 10 years and deciding what you’d do with your business and where you wanted it to be, but things can change far too quickly these days to project that far into the future. Here are some pointers for entrepreneurs who are yet to start their business and want to create a plan suitable for 2018:
Keep Your Business Plan Short
Your business plan needs to be short and sweet. You’re going to be using this plan in the coming months to stay focused and make decisions, but you may also use it to secure funding. Nobody who could offer you funding is going to want to read through 100 pages of your business plan. They’re likely going to be a very busy person, and they simply won’t have the patience.
Suitable For You
Your business plan needs to be written not just to secure funding, but so that it’s suitable for you to use, too. It should help you to grow your business over time, and be something you can refine later on. Your business plan shouldn’t go stale – you should look to update it when appropriate!
Suitable For Your Audience
Your business plan also needs to be written so that it’s suitable for investors to read through and understand where their money will be going. Here’s an idea of what you should include in your business plan:
- Summary – this is an overview of your business and plan, should be around two pages long.
- Opportunity – here you should outline what you are selling, who the competition is, who the target market is, and any other relevant information.
- Execution – how will you turn your opportunity into a business? Also include your marketing and sales plan.
- Team and company – describe your current team and who you need to hire to succeed.
- Financial plan – include a financial forecast and know your numbers so that investors can feel more confident in what you’re saying to them.
- Appendix – here you should include product images and additional information.
- Executive summary – introduce your company, explain what you do, explain what you’re looking for from your readers. Should be able to stand alone.
Make sure you talk about what you’ll spend money on in your business plan, as well as how investors will get their money back from you. You need to make it attractive. You could even include where you’re going to get equipment and machinery from, such as including TruckDealersAustralia.com.au to give them a good idea. You should also include a one sentence overview and summarize the problem you are solving. Knowing your target market is absolutely imperative. This is because your business plan needs to outline what makes you unique and why customers will come to you rather than the competition.
Who are the competition? What will you do differently? Know your exact funding requirements too – you need to know what you’re asking for, even if you expect you will get a counter offer. Remember, you can find templates online if you need one.