Saturday, July 19, 2008

Big Business (Part 3)

What's the Plan, Stan?
Business plan, that is.

You've heard how important it is to come up with a business plan in the early stages, right? But why is it so important and what is it?
A business plan is a plan of action. Where you are, where you want to be and how you'll get there. Here are some tips and pointers in writing one...
  1. In once sentence describe what you do. Be as specific as possible so that when you tell someone, they aren't confused. "I sell clothing" isn't near as specific as "I hand paint clothing for adults and children."
  2. In detail, describe what you sell and what makes it special, or sets you apart from your competition. Is it more of a luxury, less expensive, custom, etc? Why buy from you?
  3. Who are your customers? It's important to really think about this one. Be very specific. Everyone can't be your customer, so who are you selling to? Senior citizens? Teenagers? Moms of twins? Where does your ideal customer usually shop/frequent? If you don't know where to find them, how will you market to them?
  4. Realistically look at your start up costs. Do you need a loan or are you fronting all of the money yourself? All of the little things can add up quickly, make sure you know what you're getting into before heading unknowingly into debt.
  5. Make sure to include copies of your Fictitious Name Statement and publication documentation.
Leave room for growth. It's a good idea to revisit your plan in a year to see if you're still on track or if you need to make any adjustments.


Rascallion said...

Great points in this post, I really need to revisit my BP, it has been way too long.

Beth262 said...

Thanks! Appreciate so much the information. I like your blog a lot.

Carrie said...

A business plan is soo important. I'm glad to see your bullet points on these major items.

Kelly said...

Ugh. I really need to get serious about revamping the ol' business plan. Thanks for the timely reminder and great tips!

Nikki said...

Great info, you are right about the little things adding up QUICKLY!


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