According to the business news channel “Bloomberg,” 8 out of 10 businesses fail within the first 18 months of their genesis. However, a recent study states that the companies that started with a proper business plan and followed them entirely had double the chance to successfully improve their businesses over time or obtain the necessary capital compared to those who didn’t have a business plan.
It’s not actually the important plan but the planning that goes into it that makes all the difference. A successful business plan is necessary for all types of business; both profit and nonprofit organizations require it.
According to the US Small business administration, A business plan is an essential roadmap for business success. This living document generally projects 3-5 years ahead and outlines a company’s route to growing revenues. They can be just a few to hundreds of pages long based on how much detail you want to add.
Steps to Create a Successful Business Plan
A business plan should have a few basic elements to be an effective document. It includes –
1. A summary and a description of the business.
2. Fundamental analysis of the market conditions, the competing parties, and the market positioning of your brand/business;
3. Your organization’s vision, mission, and objectives;
4. Strategies you would handle within your organization;
5. An outline plan of how you are going to develop the products and services which you would eventually sell;
6. Financial projections for different periods;
7. An outline of all the possible risks and opportunities involved;
Writing a business plan might seem daunting initially, but it isn’t a very difficult proposition. If you are familiar with your business and hope to make a mark with it, writing a business plan becomes crucial for its success.
Let’s discuss a few sections in detail.
It’s an overview of your business and its values. This section explains to the potential reader the why and what of your company and where you are headed with it and what makes it special in the market.
Give a brief note of your firm’s history, management’s unique strengths, assets, and liabilities. Then, if you are established, give a list of the products, services, or programs you offer. Finally, include your financial roadmap as to how you will sustain the company.
2. Organization and management
This segment should deal with your firm’s internal organization structure, information about the stakeholders, and brief profiles of the top management, including their qualifications. In addition, you will be required to list the people on your company board and their holdings and terms.
3. Marketing strategies
In this segment, we will explain the marketing strategies we will be handling to market your company’s products. Your comprehensive marketing strategy should include your marketing strategy and simultaneously your sales strategy, as they go hand in hand. The sales strategy deals with how you plan on actually selling your product. It’s the art of turning leads into sales. Marketing and sales should work together for optimum results.
4. Financial data
Before starting with this part, you should analyze the market potential and set clear targets for your company and the products you sell. In addition, this segment should include historical data of your company, including income statements, balance sheets, and cash flow statements for every year you have been in business, to understand the trajectory you have taken with the company.
5. Services and products offered
This segment of your business plan deals with the service or product that you offer. Emphasize the benefits of your potential and current customers when they use your products and their value proposition. Describe your product/service in detail, its lifecycle, and any intellectual property you might own about it.
You can also list and describe the products you might produce in the future and how you plan to do so. If you have any copyrights, trademarks, or patents secured for your organization, you will have to list them.
6. Presenting effectively
You must present your business plan precisely and effectively as well. When you have developed a detailed business plan, you should be able to convey it to potential investors or clients in a convincing manner.
You can create a pitch deck to present business PowerPoint presentations to the target audience effectively, which would seal the deal. You can read this to know—Is your pitch deck hurting your business?
We hope this guide was helpful to you to get a better understanding of what a successful business plan should be. Let us know if you have any doubts, and we will be glad to help you out.