A business plan is a fundamental document created by a company that describes the company products or services, goals, operations, marketing strategy, financial projections, management structure, and target market.
A business plan is important because it’s a document you show to investors before the company gets successful track records and it can also be used to get funding from financial institutions.
Both start-up and established businesses make use of business plans, but start-up makes use of them more often as they do not have any track records while established businesses can update theirs to see what has been achieved.
steps to creating a business plan
Creating a successful business plan requires careful planning, research, and a clear understanding of your goals and objectives.
Define Your Company
this section of your business plan should tell people what your company is about, its structure, team, salaries structure, visions, and objectives, it helps state a clear reason why you are embarking on that business.
Your vision should outline your long-term goals and aspirations for your business, while your objectives should be specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time bound.
Your mission statement should state why you exist and shouldn’t be too long while your vision statement should be longer and should begin with “we will”, you have to be customer centered.
Conduct Market Research
Choose the right market for your business, one that needs your products or services.
Market research is a critical component of your business plan. You need to understand your target market, their needs, preferences, and buying behaviors.
Conducting market research will help you identify your target customers and their pain points.
Carry out a SWOT analysis, this means carrying out a Strength, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and strength, this help to state factors that will affect your business.
Define Your Products or Services
Clearly define the products or services that you will offer to your target market. Also, state the products and services you might offer in the nearest future.
Describe the features and benefits of your products or services and explain how they will meet the needs of your target customers.
It’s important you state if your products are homemade
Carryout customer segmentation
Your customer is the most important part of your business, in developing your marketing plan, you have to consider your buyer’s personal like,
Where does your customer live?
How old are they?
Their marital status
Their source of income
How much they earn
Their value and belief system
What they do during their free time and weekend
Their level of education
What do they do for fun?
Develop a Marketing Strategy
Your marketing strategy should outline how you will reach and engage with your target customers.
This includes your advertising, what method of advertising will generate customers.
social media, what social media platform is the right place to talk about your business.
content marketing strategies, what content format will attract customers, it could either be video or text format, although video format has proven to attract more customers
Create Financial Projections
Your financial projections should include your revenue, expenses, and profits for the next three to five years. This should also include your cash flow projections, balance sheet, facilities, and income statement.
Develop a Management Structure
Your management structure should outline the roles and responsibilities of your team members. This includes your executive team, management team, and employees. You should also explain how you will recruit and train new team members and how you will manage their performance.
Review and Update Your Plan Regularly
A successful business plan is not a one-time event. You should regularly review and update your plan to reflect changes in the market, your business, and your goals and objectives.
A business plan is very important as it helps you state your goals, vision an mission.