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Tuesday, July 16th 2019

Create a Solid Business Plan

Tips for Success

At some point, preferably before you begin your new venture or launch your company, you need to create a business plan. Not necessarily for funding but to thoroughly examine your potential marketplace, to help determine a true competitive advantage and to assist in the development of your marketing positioning.

All too often, an entrepreneur feels he/she can just launch their business and do the planning later. Take the time to really plan your business. A sample suggested outline is listed below.

Possible Business Plan Outline:

  1. Summary
    • Business concept
    • Current situation
    • Key success factors
    • Financial situation/needs
  2. Vision
    • Vision statement
    • Key milestones
  3. Market analysis
    • The overall market
    • Changes in the market
    • Market segments
    • Target market and customers
    • Customer characteristics
    • Customer needs
    • Customer buying decisions
  4. Competitive analysis
    • Industry overview
    • Nature of competition
    • Changes in the industry
    • Primary competitors
    • Competitive products/services
    • Opportunities
    • Threats and risks
  5. Strategy
    • Key competitive capabilities
    • Key competitive weaknesses
    • Strategy
    • Implementing strategy
  6. Products/services
    • Product/service description
    • Positioning of products/services
    • Competitive evaluation of products/services
    • Future products/services
  7. Marketing and sales
    • Marketing strategy
    • Marketing positioning
    • Sales strategy and tactics
    • Advertising tactics
    • Promotions/incentives
    • Publicity tactics
    • Online strategy and tactics
    • Event marketing
  8. Operations
    • Key personnel
    • Organizational structure
    • Human resources plan
    • Product/service delivery
    • Customer service/support
    • Facilities and equipment
  9. Creating the financials of the business plan
    • Assumptions and comments
    • Starting balance sheet
    • Profit-and-loss projection
    • Cash flow projection
    • Balance sheet projection
    • Ratios and analyses

For more help see our business plan library.

I look for three I's in an employee--integrity, industry and intelligence. Of the three, integrity is the most important.
~ Sol Price, SDSU'34
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