5 tips to writing a successful business plan
So, you need a business plan. Where do you begin?
As part of my coaching business, I help entrepreneurs get started building a business plan that will work most efficiently for their goals. I've put together the top 5 tips I like to cover in my initial client meetings in this post.
Think big picture with no filters! Write down all the details of what your business looks like when you have it up and running. Don’t worry about money or all the details that go into making it happen. DREAM! That would be the foundation that you will build on. If you don’t have a strong vision, you won’t have a strong business. When you see pictures of furniture you want or art you want hung on the wall, print it out and add it to the business plan binder!
Do some basic googling. Who is your competition? How many competitors are in the area that you are serving? What is the median pricing for the product or service you want to sell? How are your competitors reaching their target audience? How does their website and social media presence look? If they have a physical location, how many square feet? Is parking close by important?
Based on the information you gathered, create an ideal customer profile through customer discovery. This is super important and cannot be skipped! Customer discovery is the process of developing and testing hypotheses about your customers needs to assess whether your idea meets their needs and offers them value.(i have a 5 step in depth for just this I can publish)
Create a list of all the costs associated with starting a business. Literally, go on amazon and create a spreadsheet with every item. Go on craigslist and see what kind of real estate is available (if you can’t work remotely). You will need all of this information for the cash flow projections that will be filled out later.
Research how you are going to get the word out that you are in business. Are you going to hire someone to do your social media and marketing? If you can’t afford to outsource, look into google adwords, facebook ads. Talk to other people who are in similar industry and see what avenue has worked best for them.