Want to Grow Your Companyt? Start with a Business Plan
Writing out a plan is key to obtaining financing and understanding what it will take to reach your goals.
Whether you want to create a new line of business, expand your products or services, gain market share, or begin selling abroad, having a sound business plan is an essential first step for growing your company: especially if you need financing to do it.
Here are the key elements of an effective business plan:
Executive summary. Every business plan begins with an executive summary that features basic information about the business, the types of products and services it sells, the state of the industry, and future plans for growth.
Company description. This section describes your business goal and details the different parts of your company, including the types of products or services it sells, consumer demand, and potential new clients. It also describes its competitive advantages in the marketplace, such as its location and type of operation.
Market analysis. Who are your customers? How big is the market? Who is the competition? A market analysis answers many of these questions in detail. You can describe, for example, the type of customers you anticipate having and the area where the business is located.
Company organization. Who is doing what in your company? This information is useful particularly if you’re seeking financing; bankers need to know how your company is structured and who they are dealing with.
Description of products and services. Use this section to describe the products and services you sell. How will your products be consumed? How often? How will consumers benefit from your product or service?
Marketing plan. This is your chance to explain in detail how you will market your products and services to potential clients. This can include plans for a website, leveraging social media, or advertising in local media.
Finances and projections. The purpose of this section is to provide financial information about your company, including short- and long-term sales projections. You can also include fixed and variable costs and when your company anticipates profits.
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