It’s Your Roadmap – Cover All Of Your Viewpoints

A business plan is a roadmap that describes how a business is going to achieve its objectives and goals. Business plan are usually a written plan from financial, marketing and operational viewpoint.

Nature of business plans are inherently strategic, an organizations starts their business with specific abilities and resources and aims to reach to a specific point in future (Generally, a period of three to five years). Essentially, a business plan is considered as answers to a comprehensive list of questions. The most important question is: Where you want see your business after three, five or ten years? What level of profits and revenues organizations expect in future? How many locations? How many employees? And so on. In order to answer all these business planning questions, an organization has to answer questions related to each of core business plan sections.

A business plan is a set of different other plan which includes; customer analysis, company analysis, industry analysis, marketing plans, operational plans and financial plans. Integrating all these plans with each other helps an organization to formulate business goals.

Perform Rigorous Self-Assessment

Certain steps are required in order to make an impressive business plan. First of all an organization have to perform its own analysis. The product and services they offer in the future or what an organization develops and offer in the future. After an organization performs his own organization analysis then an overall industry analysis is required in order to develop an impressive business plan. Look deep into what you can offer, what your resources are, how would you manage, what is your personal opportunity cost, what is your time assessment, how will people look into your business, how would they percieve the business with your personality, or what type of personality you envision for the company based on current situation.

Perform Industry Analysis

An industry analysis outlines market size, market conditions and changing trends within the industry. Moreover, an organization has to know the market position of their competitor and areas in which an organization can gain competitive advantage over their rivals. Think which services the industry demands, and how the supply is working. Write each competitor, and write their competitive advantage. Perform a small survey which can show you the weaknesses of these competitors. Outline each weakness and then show how you can make it as your strength. Look deep into the media. How media will see you? How the media is currently targeting and helping the competitors? Which media outlets can deal with your service or product? Also find some company which can give you analytics on current climate in the industry. Gartner reports etc. can help you decide e.g. 

Profiling Customers/Clients/Consumers

Primarily, organizations now a day’s wants to fulfill the needs and expectations of their customers to make their customers satisfied. Customers play a vital role in making a business plan; Organizations identify their potential customers by making psychographic, demographic and geographical profiles. Customer analysis is an important part of a business plan through which an organization influences their potential customers.

Marketing Plan

A product requires an efficient marketing plan to target the right customers. A marketing plan guides an organization to use different marketing channels and promotional activities to reach to the customer. In order to reach to the organizational goals specific action plans are required , for this organization use an operational plan within their business plan, through which an organization identify key milestones and the activities which are required to reach to those milestones.

Financial Plan

There are certain costs associated with activities performed within the business environment and for that a financial plan is required. A financial plan is a part of a business plan which outlines external funding required by an organization to perform set of activities. Moreover, a financial plan guides an organization in acquiring different assets and most importantly guides in projected profits and revenues in the long run.

Abridged version

Always create a simple and small version, perhaps 2-5 pages, of your business plan. This is the version that you can easily skim later on. Similarly you can use this version in public settings to get help from influencers. Sometimes influencers need to look into some document, this is the one that you will provide, so why not make it a part of the writing.

Do not be over-imaginative

Sometimes people start writing plans which become unrealistic. This is due to writing everything that comes to mind. Try to be realistic from the start. Your time is important. Keep things simple, and doable. You can amend it later, or you can amend it while you acting on the previous version. Always make it a living document, back into your mind. Be creative but don’t be over-imaginative. Your goals should have clear deadlines, and clear projections for financial, operational, or marketing areas.

Infographics

Infographics have become very important these days. You normally have very little time, so thats why you need the abridged version for future. Similarly you also need infographics, which help you easily skim through the entire process. I have seen some people putting these infographics in front of their doors. That also becomes a constant reminder.

Using Business Planning Softwares

Again your time is of the essence. And there are tools to help you make a best business plan in a very little time. But remember, the more thought you put into your business plan, the solid it will be. So get more time to do the thought, by outsourcing some of the work to the Business Planning Softwares. These softwares have templates, which are easy to follow. Sometimes these softwares do help you create infographics as well. You can easily amend these plans later, so it helps you make it a living document, easily.

Questions Section: Ask A Lot of Questions Within The Business Plan

This is the area or part of your business plan where you get extra imaginative. Just write 10-20 questions without answering anything. Keep adding questions as you progress. You do not need to answer anything.

Opportunity Focus

All of the business plan document should have one theme in common, opportunity focus with audience in mind. Always remember what is your opportunity cost, and how would you align your goals to streamline it. What bigger the opportunity it, will it last in the next few years, is it the next big thing in my niche etc.

I hope theses sort of steps, and thinking approach will help you in your pursuit.


The author can be reached at khawar@infoginx.com.

If you would like to contribute on Infoginx, feel free to reach out at info@infoginx.com.