If you’ve decided to quit your job and start a small business of your own, congratulations, that’s a brave decision. But whether this becomes a smart decision or a stupid one depends on your approach to how you manage the start-up. The first thing to do is to create a proper business plan.
A business plan is a set of well defined business goals that you set for your start-up. In a good business plan, the goals are not vague or abstract, but clear and well thought out, with definite ideas on reaching them. A business plan also defines your organization, describes your team, lists the value added by each team member to the start-up.
You will be asked for your business plan by Angel investors or venture capitalists looking to invest in your start-up, that is why it is so important to write a really good business plan. While writing a business plan for your start-up, see if you can answer the following questions.
What Does Your Start-up Do, Exactly?
That’s the most important question you should ask yourself before embarking on a start-up. What does it do, exactly? What product do you intend to sell? What is its potential in the market? Have you clearly thought out the details of the product? For example, if you’ve decided to open an electronic showroom of your own, you should have decided at the very start about the products you wish to sell, from which supplier are you going to source the products from, are there going to be any special offers for your customers and so on.
What’s Your Target Market?
A business plan must address questions about the target market your start-up is aiming for. Who are your customers going to be, which income group do they belong to; are they college educated or not; are they male or female, adult, children or teens. Do you really understand your target customer? Are you aware of his or her needs, aspirations, goals, wants and do you know what your target customer is really looking for? Can you add value to his or her life with your product or service? How do you plan to reach out to your target customer? There are just so many questions you should address in your business plan about your target customers and the demographic they belong to.
What’s the Name of Your Business?
Actually, it’s not easy to name your business. There are so many issues involved in this. First, you should choose a name that is relatable to your customers and can be easily remembered.
Second, the name you choose shouldn’t have been already taken by some other business. Third, the business name should be the same as a domain name of your website. Then, you will have to decide on the logos, taglines, color schemes and trademarks for your business. All of these should be there in your business plan.
What Are Your Business Goals And How Can You Achieve Them?
Finally, the most important part of the business plan. What are your business goals and how do you intend to reach them? A business plan is, more than anything a “mission statement,” which is designed to guide you when you’re confused about what your startup will be all about and also inform potential investors about what they are getting into, when they put their money in your business. It is important that the goals you set for your business are relatable, achievable and practical. There has to be a definite timeline on when you intend to achieve the goals defined in your business plan, and how you plan on making use of the capital that is available to you.
Well, that’s how you write a business plan for your start-up. We hope this blog post has been useful as well as informative to you. As usual, we look forward to your comments and suggestions, so bring them on!