How to write a start-up business plan

How to write a start-up business plan

A business plan can help you identify your goals, target market, financial options and much more. Your business plan should adapt with your company an

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A business plan can help you identify your goals, target market, financial options and much more. Your business plan should adapt with your company and change as you make new goals. Things rarely go to plan in a start-up business, and you should be prepared for that.

A well-structured plan will keep your business on track – even when you feel overwhelmed. Try writing the business plan at the start of your new adventure and update it as you go. When you feel stressed at work, you can look at how far you have come with the company. You might have already achieved those initial goals or changed direction entirely. After all, a plan is just a plan.

Let’s take a closer look at what to include in your business plan.

An executive summary

Write a short overview of your business objectives, research and data. It can be anywhere between one to two pages. An executive summary should condense the information in your plan and introduce your company. For example, you may need to provide a business plan to the bank when applying for a business loan. The executive summary is the opening page, and you need to get it just right.  What makes your business unique, and how will you make it a success?

A company description

You need to provide a quick description of your brand. Think about your company values, priorities and workplace culture. There may be something unique about your company – like your dedication to the environment and eco-friendly materials in the office. Or, perhaps you are committed to employee wellbeing and have an extensive list of workplace perks.

Market research

You need to research your target market and identify who your target customer is. Consider their lifestyle, budget, needs, wants and look out for any gaps in the market. There may be a demand for your product right now. Once you have found your target market, you need to conduct some research. For example, you could research which marketing strategies are most effective for your target consumer.

Description of product or service

Write a brief description of your product ideas or the service you will provide. You might start off with one collection to launch the company. Identify the unique selling point of your product or service and how it relates to your brand.

Management and operational structure

Start-up companies usually have a small team that gradually builds over time. You need to think about the management structure of your company – even if there is only a few of you. Your employees should know that you are the boss and what you expect of them. Think about your company culture and how you will run your workplace.

Financials

You may need funding from a lender or investor to start your business. You will need to inform the lender of your expenses and exactly what you will spend the money on. Make sure these details are as accurate as possible.

Prepare to launch your start-up by writing a business plan.