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How to Write a Business Plan

Spend the time to create an accurate and detailed picture of your business for investors, with a plan that will answer all of their questions.

Instructions

  • Step 1: Detail executive summary Detail an executive summary with a brief mission statement. Include names of partners and employees, functions, services rendered, and business location.
  • Step 2: Provide market analysis Provide a market analysis that reflects your knowledge of the industry, the industry's outlook, target markets, and an evaluation of the competition.
  • TIP: Gathering information on regulatory restrictions that affect your business is essential.
  • Step 3: Describe company Include a snapshot of the company with organization and management described, including salary and benefits. Add the ownership information, clarifying legal and practical involvement.
  • Step 4: Define market strategy Define your market strategy with information on penetration, channels, and growth. State communication and advertising decisions and your overall sales strategy, identifying prospects.
  • Step 5: Present products Present your product line, emphasizing distinct advantages with a target public. Give patent or copyright information. Relate any ongoing research and development.
  • Step 6: Request the money When requesting an investment, present positive and negative funding scenarios and needs over the coming five years. Make capital expenditures, working capital, debt retirement, and acquisitions clear.
  • TIP: It is better to be accurate and honest than to project successes that might not materialize.
  • Step 7: Detail financials Detail your financials, historical and prospective, capturing realistic quarterly and yearly projections.
  • Step 8: Add the appendix Add an appendix with supporting information. Provide credit history, resumes, references, market studies, licenses, leases, contracts, and names of consultants.
  • FACT: Did you know? According to the Small Business Administration, only 67 percent of businesses make it past two years.

You Will Need

  • A standard business plan form
  • A market analysis
  • Information on regulatory restrictions
  • Knowledge of your industry
  • Product

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