Business Planning in 6 easy steps
Gisel Martin l March 9, 2018 l Blog Post 3
What is a Business Plan For?
I know that writing a business plan can be very intimidating, but I can help you write a business plan in just six easy steps. You can write it as in-depth as you’d like, after all, it will guide you to execute your vision and sets the foundation for your business. The tone and the information you provide on your business plan depends on who intends to read it. I tell my clients that there are two types of business plans: for potential investors or for owners. If you don’t intend to seek investors, the business plan is a guide for yourself. If you can answer the following questions you will have no problem writing your business plan.
6 Essential Components
What problem are you solving? (Mission Statement)
Who are you solving it for? (Target Audience)
How will you communicate with your customers or potential customers? (Marketing Strategy)
What are you selling and what’s the price for your products/services? (Revenue Streams)
Who will manage the daily operations? What other positions are needed? What are the roles and what skills do they need? (Operations)
How much money do you need for the initial investment? What are your daily/weekly/monthly sales goals? (Money Matters)
I believe the first three components are the most important parts of a business plan. Essentially, they will define your mission statement, target audience, and marketing strategy. All three of these focus on the customer. I know what you’re thinking, “Gisel, you’re crazy! How are these three things more important than revenue?” My answer is: because without the customer, you won’t have any revenue. It’s important to establish a relationship with your customers because you are in business for them, you are helping to solve a problem or fulfill a need.
The other three parts include revenue streams, details of your operations, and to be clear on money. You should always know your numbers. For every dollar that comes in to your business, you should now how much is spent on employees, cost of materials, other expenses, profit, etc. Also, it’s important to have sales goal as a measure of how your business is performing. Is it meeting daily sales goal, if not, then it should at least meet the weekly or monthly sales goal.
What Comes First, Business or Business Plan?
It’s better to start with a business plan because you will have a guide to follow before you begin your business.
Will writing a business plan really help my small business? Yes! I highly recommend it because it will improve your business.
Can I still create a business plan even if I've already started the business? Yes! Actually, it will probably be easier for you to write a business plan because you’ll just need to write down what you’ve already done. It’s a task of translating your actions into written form. As you go through the six components above, it will serve as a reflection.
Do you have any other questions regarding writing a business plan? Let me know in the comments.
Next Blog Post
The next blog post will be about my journey of self discovery, self care, and self love.
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Did you find my guidelines of business planning helpful? Contact me if you'd like to work with me individually or in a group setting to write your business plan.