If you have followed me over the past couple of weeks, you know that I am currently writing a series on how to write a start up business plan. The first article was about getting a start up business idea. Then I discussed how to use the SMART method to build your start up business plan. Now that you have a clear idea of what your start up business will look like, it is time to go deeper into the plan to look at the positive side of things. Today we are going to work on What is Going to Work in your Start up.
Start with your strengths
Your business will have some assets; the biggest of all will definitely be: YOU. Therefore, it is important to make a list of all your strengths that will help you succeed with your new business. Among these strengths, you will find:
– Your knowledge
– Your talent/abilities/management skills
– Your qualities as an entrepreneur
– Your network
– Your financial means
Making a list is a good thing, but then, you need to write down how each strength can help you to make more money with your business. This will give you an idea of how much you can expect to sell/generate in the upcoming year. This part of your business plan is very important especially if you need financing. Banks love to see what you are going to do and that your start up is well organized. They see too many start ups failing because the owner had a good idea hampered by poor planning/management.
Who will be your first clients?
If all things go well, who will be the first people to contact in order to make a sale? This is another important part of your plan; define who needs your product/service. By determining your segments, you will be in a better position to assess how much sales revenue you can generate within your first year of operation.
Think of all the opportunities, groups of influence and leaders that may be interested in your business. Think of special ways to reach each segment you are targeting. If you think that your product/service is for everyone, think again. Go deeper in your market analysis and target people that are more likely to deal with you upfront.
While knowing your potential clients is pretty useful to draw your first financial plan, it will also help you in setting smart goals. In this part of the plan, don’t be shy to enter optimistic numbers. The goal of this part of your start up business plan is to do away with your mental barriers and aim for the stars, you can do it!