How to Write the Perfect BUSINESS PLAN

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Welcome to the ten minute MBA.I'm your host, Scott Dclary. On the ten minute MBA I give youactionable insights, tool, strategies techniques that you can use to start, scale, grow or N X Your Business. Today I'm going to give you ahigh level overview of what you need to do to write a highly effective businessplan. Why do you need a business plan? Well, a business planwill help you build a business. It is what is required to help organizeyour thoughts, as well as if you want to get anyone else on board, if you want to go raise money, having a business plan is key and, ultimately, even if you aren't going to raise money, a businessplan really helps you look into the future and predict outcomes for your business.It's not a crystal ball, but it will help map you out a pathfrom where you currently are and where you're headed. It will help you estimateyour total startup costs. It will help...

...you project revenues and profits. Itwill help you convince investors to invest if that's the route you want to take. It will help you be competitive from the start. It will help youand dissipate any challenges that you may have and, most importantly, it's goingto keep you on track. It ensures that you focus your attention on theright things and helps you avoid mistakes that could totally sink and kill Your Business. So I'm going to walk you through, step by step, some of theitems that you should have in a business plan now, just before wedive into this. Unfortunately, many business plans are wildly unrealistic. The initialexcitement of starting a business often causes entrepreneurs to massively overestimate how successful they'll beand underestimate the challenge is the encounter. In order to be effective, abusiness plan needs to be realistic. So before you launch, you want tobe relatively confident that you have a good chance of succeeding, which means thatyou have to be honest with yourself about the expectations that you're setting, theprojections that you're setting, so on and so forth. In many ways,a business plan should help you decide whether...

...or not your idea will pan out. It's possible that you may want to put together Your Business Plan before youactually try and take a product to market, because you can realize, as you'remapping this out, as you're strategizing, that perhaps the potential outcome isn't asgreat as you initially thought, and that's okay, and it forces youto go back to the drawing board, but it will force you to takethe necessary time to do the market research, analyze your financial needs and map outa proper strategy for the future. Don't look at a business plan asa thing that's preventing you from getting started. View it as building a foundation fora successful, lasting business. So these are the parts that you haveto have, and I'm not going to go into too much death because againten minutes. But to start off, you have an executive summary. Sothis is the First Section of the business plan. It gives people a generalsense of what Your Business is all about, what products are, what services youprovide, where you've been, where...

...you're headed. There are six thingsthat you should have in a business plan and you should start to introduce thesesix things in your executive summary. Number One, mission statement. Number two, general information, such as founding date, names and roles of founders and otherimportant details. Number three, company highlights, including financial successes and otherkey successes. Number for products or services that you sell. Number Five,financial information, including funding goals, current sources of funding, revenue, etc. And then number six future plans for the business. So, if you'regoing to be summarizing these things, think of your executive summary like a detailedelevator pitch. It highlights the most important point of your business without going intoall the details, and you may actually want to consider writing your executive summaryafter you've written the rest of Your Business Plan. That way you're more familiarwith the relevant information. Now, after your executive summary You have your companyoverview. This section provides more detail regarding...

...exactly what your business does and howits struct shirt. You can start by explaining the industry your in, yourprimary customer base, the big problem that you solve for customers how you solvethat big problem. Essentially, you're explaining the reason for your businesses existence.You're identifying a specific customer need in a specific market and then clarifying exactly howyou'll meet that need. The overview section functions as your unique value proposition.Remember that term. It clearly and concisely explains the unique value that your businessoffers. If you're struggling with this section, try to answer the following questions.Who Do you serve? How do you serve them? You see ifyou can answer these questions, then you know your unique value proposition and that'sgoing to carry you through as you eventually take your product to market. Nextsection would be a market analysis. The market analysis section of Your Business Planprovides in depth information about your industry, your specific market and the competition.If this section is done properly, it assures readers that you know what you'regetting into, and your market analysis seek...

...to include the following information key industrysize, growth trends and other really important details. Target Market data, idealcustomers, their specific needs and demographic details. Target Market Size, yearly amount spent, purchase frequency, projected growth, market share, potential percentage of targetmarket you can acquire, potential barriers to entry, things that might make itdifficult to succeed in the target market. A competition, top competitors, marketshare strengths. These are the things that you have to include when you're doingan in depth analysis. This section will take a significant amount of research,but it's time well spent. First and foremost, it prepares you to succeed. Second, it helps investors know that you've done your due diligence. Nextsection would be the organization and management. First spell out the general structure ofYour Business, both in organizational terms and in legal terms. In this section, for example, where does each key stakeholder fit into the bigger picture ofYour Business? Include an organizational chart.

This could also be called a capchart or capitalization table or a capitalization chart. It shows who owns what, howmany cofounders, how many equity percentage, equity share, so on and soforth. And then, in terms of your legal set up, areyou an LLC and s Corp, a Sea Corp, a General Partnership,a sole proprietor? How have you set up Your Business? After that,you want to describe the background of your key team members. This part isespecially important if you're seeking funding, because investors want to know that you haveexperienced, successful individuals who can ensure that your business also succeeds. And finally, you want to describe any key hires it will be necessary. This maynot be immediately relevant, especially if you're just getting started, but it willmatter much more as you grow and expand. The next section will be products andservices. This section explains exactly what products or services your business will providethe customers. Start by describing your particular product or service and the specific needit will meet. It's really important to clarify exactly how your product or servicewill stand apart from the competition. Within...

...this section, you should also discussthe product or service status. Is it ready to take the market? DevelopmentObjectives, for example? If it's not ready to go, what steps needto be taken to get it ready to go? Proprietary information. Do youhave any intellectual property, patents or proprietary information? That is essential to thesuccess of Your Business? And supply chain. Do you depend on any suppliers orvendors? Have you set up those relationships yet? Do you know whatthat looks like and make your product or service really shine? In a section, it should be abundantly clear both to you and to the reader, thatyou have something unique to offer and that you're in a prime position to attractcustomers. Next section would be your marketing and sales. This section explains howyou're going to get your product or service into the hands of customers. Yourobjective in this section is to make clear both how you will make customers awareof your product or service and how you'll convince them to buy it from you. The first element in your marketing plan needs to be the position your productand how you are positioning your product in...

...relation to your competitors. Will youposition yourself by offering lower price, superior quality, Superior Service? What isyour differentiator or your remember unique selling proposition? Next, discuss the specific promotional methodsyou're going to use to get the word out about your product or service. Additionally, clarify the metrics you'll use to evaluate whether or not your marketingefforts are working, for example, leads generated, social media, reach,website visitors. And after you've laid out your marketing plan, then discuss yoursales plan. What method will you use to convince customers to buy from you? Cold calling, in person, meetings, Webinars, setting up funnels? Andthen, lastly, who's actually going to be doing the selling? Doyou need a sales force? Is it ECOMMERCE? Who's going to train yourteam? How big will your team be? Are you going to sell the firstmillion dollars in revenue as a founder? Lay Out the budget for your salesand marketing. This will help readers gage the scope of your efforts andpossibly your potential results and funding or sales required to keep this machine growing.After your sales and marketing focus on your...

...financial projections. This is the nextsection. In this section, you want to paint a clear picture of yourbusinesses current financial status, well also mapping out where you hope to be inthe future. Investors will closely examine this section to determine whether they want togive you funding. If you've been in business for a while, include asmuch financial data as possible, including income statements, balance sheets, cash flowstatements, operating budget, it's account receivable and payable statements, if appropriate,documentation of any debt you're carrying any other investments that have been made. Yourfinancial projections for the future will either be based on your past data or industryand competitive research. If you don't have past data, if you're not surehow to create these projections, consider hiring an accountant or financial advisor to helpyou. The next section would be your funding requirements, and this obviously onlyapplies if you're actually looking for funding, but in this section you'll lay outexactly how much funding you need over the next, say, five years explainhow you're going to use the funding to...

...help achieve your goals. If you'regoing to include this section, make sure you include the following details. Theamount of funding you need right now, funding you'll need down the road forup to five years, type of funding you're looking for, loan, investment, etc. And the terms your requesting for the funding. So how muchequity are you willing to give up, for example, or options or revenueshare? Additionally, explain how you will be using the funds. Will yoube acquiring inventory, paying down a debt, hiring employees? It is critical tolay out your future financial plan so that investors have a good idea ofwhat they're getting into. They need to know exactly what they're going to beinvesting in so that you don't have a tumult and investors feel like they've beenlined to or bamboozled. So as much as possible, you also want tomake sure that you're customizing your funding request based on who you're talking to.So, if you're asking a bank, provide them with every payment plan.If you're asking an investor, give them an estimated at Roy. And then, lastly, to wrap all this up, you need an appendix that basically containsall of the supporting documentation and information...

...that will substantiate what you've written inall the previous sections. In this section, you may want to include credit histories, permits, product pictures, legal documents, licenses, patents, contracts. In all the previous sections you're trying to paint a compelling picture of whatYour Business is like and where it's headed. You want to provide the reader withenough data to help them grasp your vision, but not so much asyou bog them down. So the appendix allows you to provide extra details tothe reader without disrupting the overall business plan review experience. If the reader isserious they want to look at these details, they can simply refer to the appendixand that, in Summary, is a business plan. Each one ofthese sections we could probably do an entire ten minutes segment on, but thiswill get you started. Remember any business questions that you have. Don't worry, I got you. This has been another ten minute MBA. That's itfor tonight. I will see you tomorrow. I will see you tomorrow.

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