A Business Plan helps entrepreneurs to raise capital. It is the process of going through essential questions. It is necessary that your Business Plan meets your needs.
There are two main categories of Business Plans:
1. Traditional Business Plan
Traditional Business Plans are standard and comprehensive as well explained in detail. These are very detailed plans that can go up to dozens of pages and require more work beforehand to write each section in detail. These plans attract more lenders and investors.
2. Lean Startup plan
Lean Startup Business Plans are also standard but not preferred by most entrepreneurs. It is a summary of the key insights on the Why, When, and How for a startup. These can be prepared swiftly and typically shrink to one page only. Investors may ask for more information even after presenting this plan.
Let us now discuss the Business Plan formats for both.
Traditional Business Plan Format
It can be utilized to explain your financial needs to investors with every detail. Entrepreneurs need not be glued with the exact Business Plan outline. Focus on the sections that can give more sense to your business orientation and requirements. Following are its sections to be defined:
1. Executive Summary
Here you need to mention:
- your startup missions!
- why is it going to be successful?
- brief about your company’s leaders, employees, and location.
- your mission statements.
- high-level growth plans to attract more investors for financing.
2. Company Description
It is the showcase of the company’s strengths and a description of the problems your business can solve. Tell your readers about the competitive advantages of your business. Introduce your experts in the team, how it is an ideal location for the business.
3. Organization and Management
Explain the legal structure of your business. Will it be structured as a Limited Partnership, Proprietorship, or LLC? Be ready with the organizational chart. You can include resumes of important members of your team.
4. Products and Services
Explain the Research and Development you have done for your offerings. Mention what the products and services you will provide are and their benefits to the community. Include the product lifecycle and plan for Intellectual Property.
5. Marketing Analysis and Plan
Competitive Research of your industry outlook and target market is required to explain trends and themes, competitor’s work, and how you can do it better than them.
Explain marketing and sales strategies in detail and describe how these attract and retain customers. Market research, Elevator pitches, SWOT, marketing budget, CPAs, addressable market are the key factors that are the main attractions to investors.
6. Financial Plan and Funding
Provide a Financial Plan for the next five years to convince your readers of the stability perspective of your business. And if it is already in operations explain Break-even analysis, including Cash Flow Statements, Balance Sheets.
Lean Startup Plan Format
Write a brief on:
- Your business value to the community.
- Key strategic partnerships like suppliers, manufacturers, etc.
- Key resources – staff, capital, or intellectual property
- List the key activities and ways for competitive advantages like the technology used for selling
- Marketing channels, Cost structure, revenues through sales, membership fees, and advertising space.
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