A well-written business plan serves as a guide at every stage of your business. It enables you to structure your business, manage it efficiently and grow successfully.
Whether you are searching for investors or looking to inspire confidence in your employees regarding your company, a well-drafted business plan will help.
But how do you ensure that your business plan is up to this crucial task? Whether you’re hiring someone to write a business plan or writing it yourself, here are some ways to make your business plan a strong voice:
Conduct Significant Market Research
Market research is key to a successful business plan. The more you research, the better your knowledge about your industry, customers and competitors and the deeper your insights. Not only does research allow you to develop better strategies, but it’s important to give readers a deeper insight into your competition, target customers and industry.
Genuine facts interest your stakeholders, especially if you are looking for financing. They give potential investors credibility that you truly understand your market.
Raise the Curiosity of your Readers
A business plan need not be boring. You can make it interesting in many ways. For example, you could use stories regarding why customers really desire the products and services you offer.
For example, make the Executive Summary section interesting by leading the reader to discover not only the details about your company but also why your business will be more successful than others.
Describe Benefits and Not Just Features of Your Products/Services
When you describe your products or services, emphasis should be on how they will benefit your customers and not on their features.
Say, for example, you sell a freezer with an external handle. Stated this way, it is only a feature. But when you say “the external handle provides extra safety for users while rotating the built-in carousel. They will not have to reach inside the freezer to rotate the carousel,” it shows the benefit.
Show You are Passionate about What You Do
When you show you care, you have a greater chance of convincing your readers about your business. Demonstrate this passion in your business plan wherever possible.
For example, while describing your products or services, explain the existing problem and why you think you can solve it better than others? Is it because you have faced the problem yourself or because you feel deeply associated with people going through the problem? Let the reader see your emotion.
Be Realistic but Aggressive with your Marketing Plan
When sharing your marketing plan, give existing statistics about your target market, competitors’ market share, and the market future. These statistics will give a clear picture of your industry and your business to readers.
But if you want them to show interest in you, tell them how you can go beyond the statistics and establish yourself in the market.
One way, for example, could be by showing a revenue channel that your competitors have not yet discovered or are underutilizing. Tell the readers about your strategies to leverage this channel.
Another way could be to show your in-depth knowledge of your target audience and how you could leverage this knowledge. For example, your product or service could be addressing a customer issue that competitors have failed to notice because of their poor insight into customer needs.
Tell Them When to Expect Results
Everybody is interested in results. If your readers are investors, they will be interested in knowing when profits will start coming in. Employees may want to know about milestones.
Give a realistic projection of the results so that you do not over-promise results that your business may not be capable of achieving.
Developing a successful business plan takes time. But given that it will directly impact your business’ future, the investment of time is well-deserved.