Business Plan Basics

Building a business plan is no small task. It takes an unbiased approach, a willingness to devote time to research, and an understanding that the plan is never complete. Here are the basics to building a business plan from the ground up. This should assist when you’re ready to take the plunge!

Executive Summary
Overview of the business plan from 50,000 feet
Company Description
Who you are, what you do, and why you do it better than anyone else
Industry Analysis & Trends
Is the market growing, shrinking, and why this is important for your business’s positioning
Target Market
Who is your product absolutely perfect for, and how you plan to market to them
Competition
Are there competitors that may make your strategy impossible?
Strategic Position & Risk Assessment
How can you differentiate your business from the competition, and can this have a negative impact on your business?
Marketing Plan & Sales Strategy
How will your target audience hear about you, or view your business? And can you turn informed consumers into customers?
Operations
What does infrastructure look like – technology | management | organizational structure
Social Responsibility
Does sustainability play a factor in the business? How will you ‘go green’?
Development, Milestones & Exit Plan
How will you measure success? How can you exit the business or transition the business?
Financials
First off, are financials available? If so, what do they tell you about the direction of the business? Can you measure profitability? Can you cut operational costs, as an example?

Other Considerations and Analysis:
SWOT Analysis
Strength, Weakness (internal), Opportunity, Threat (external)
PRIME Analysis
Product, Resources, I-Statement, Marketing, Economics

Resources:
The Successful Business Plan; Secrets & Strategies by Rhonda Abrams

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