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How to Write a Business Plan - Entrepreneurship 101

twelve years ago I started my first

business and I started with absolutely

nothing I don't just mean I started with

no money I started with no money no

skills no plans barely even any ideas

and let's just say that was a tough way

to start it's tough to build something

successful when you don't even know what

you're trying to build after working for

myself for several years I finally got

around to coming up with a plan it was

messy it took me forever to write and

honestly not really that useful of the

finished document but in the process of

writing the plan allowed me to create a

lot of clarity for myself about what my

objectives for the business were and how

I would reach them within the next two

years I had more than doubled the size

of my business

hiring a staff of a dozen people to run

it for me and attracting hundreds new

customers since that time I've written

quite a few business plans both for my

own companies and for those of my

clients and at this point I've developed

a system to streamline the entire

process not only making it faster and

simpler but also way more useful in a

really practical way if you want to get

your business organized and start

strategically increasing your profits

and growing towards your goals then keep

on watching this business plan has six

main sections and I'd recommend that you

start by scribbling your ideas for each

on a separate blank piece of paper once

you get your ideas worked out you can

create one cohesive document the six

pages of your business plan are one

overview to message three marketing for

product five production and delivery and

finally it's six goals the first page of

your business plan will be an overview

it's going to give a basic understanding

on what your company does and the

structure of your company now you're

seeing me write it down here in my

sloppy messy handwriting however I typed

up a nice neat version for you to use

for yourself so if you want a copy of

that just check the description down

below it's completely free and you can

use it to write your own business plan

in that first overview page of your

business plan you want to include your

business

your company structure the location

where you do business and also a brief

description of exactly what your company

actually does the next piece of

information for your company's overview

is your company's mission and this is

really important because it's the

driving force behind your business plan

it's what all your plans are focused

towards achieving and if you don't have

a mission it's like trying to make plans

to reach a goal without having the goal

so make sure you don't skip this step

the final component of the overview page

is your chart of accountability now this

chart describes who is accountable for

which of the major tasks involved in

running the business and the three main

areas of count ability and most

businesses are marketing and sales

operations and finances the second page

of your business plan will focus on

outlining your company's message it's

really important if you want your

business to be successful that you have

a clear idea of what message you are

working to communicate to your customers

who are those customers how do you fit

into their lives and how can you help

them solve a problem that they're facing

and create a result that they're looking

for as you can see here the questions

that you'll want to answer on this page

of your business plan include what

problem does your company solve for your

customers what result does your company

create for those customers how does your

company create those results who does

your company serve why do you do what

you do why should your customers choose

you over your competition and then

finally what is your company's step by

step plan for creating those results for

the customer or what is your proprietary

system this both helps to answer the

question what sets you apart from your

competition and it also shows your

customers how you're going to create

those results that you're promising

which will give them much greater

confidence in your ability to create the

results okay now let's move on and talk

about the third page of your business

plan this page focuses on marketing and

generating sales first of all you'll

want to define your target market by

their Democrat

and their psychographics demographics

are attributes such as their age their

income where they live

whereas psychographics have to do with

their interests their desires and their

fears here you'll also want to include

an estimated size of your target market

and even more important that that is

where you have identified that you can

find groups of those target customers

and here's a little big hint if you

haven't yet figured out where you can

find groups of those customers be it

online or off you're probably going to

have trouble successfully marketing your

product or service that you sell so if

you come to this part in the business

plan and you don't know what to put here

you're probably gonna want to do some

research and make sure that this target

customer that you have defined with the

demographics and the psychographics if

someone who you actually can find groups

of because if you can't find a group of

them then you might want to consider

redefining that target customer and

slightly pivoting your marketing

position the final three pieces of

information that I recommend you include

on this page of your business plan are

your visibility strategy which explains

how people will first learn about your

brand and about your products your lead

generation strategy which explains how

you will establish contact with the

people who have discovered your brand

and then finally your conversion

strategy which is essentially your sales

strategy explains how you're going to

turn those leads that you've generated

into paying customers

here is a quick aside as you're working

through this business plan for yourself

it's more than likely that you won't

know the answers to all of these

questions and you won't have all these

things figured out yet and I just want

to let you know that that is completely

alright and actually one of the main

purposes of writing your business plan

is

to become aware of those things that you

haven't thought about yet or that you

haven't figured out that you don't know

because only once you're aware of what

you don't know will you be able to

figure those things out so don't put off

writing the business plan because you

don't know everything yet but rather

write the business plan so that you can

get very clear on exactly what you do

know and what you need to figure out all

right

now let's move on to the fourth page of

your business plan this page describes

the product or products that you sell

and just so we're clear here a product

could be a physical product or a digital

product or a service but I'm just using

the term product in a general sense on

this page I highly recommend that you

choose just one a product as your

business's primary product you might

sell several different things you might

even sell hundreds of different things

but determine what your main product is

that you're going to Center your

business's marketing message around and

really try to structure your business

around selling the reason that I

recommend that you do this is that many

different parts of your business

development will be much easier if you

do have one product that is the focus on

this page of the business plan start by

first of all identifying what that

product is and then describing the

result that the product creates and

here's a little hint what your company

sells is really the result of the

product creates not the product itself

after describing the results describe

the impact of the product create this is

different than the result itself it's

instead how the customers life is

affected by the result of the product

creates for example if the product that

you're selling physically is a vacuum

cleaner then the result of the product

creates is clean floors but the products

impact is that your prospect feels

better about the state of their house

has a cleaner healthier living

environment and perhaps feels more

confident inviting company over once

you've described those three things for

your main product you can move on to

other products that your company sells

describing first of all what the product

is

second the result that it creates and

finally the impact that it has on

customers lives the sixth and final page

of your business success plan has to do

with your goals now if you look at any

examples of business plans in the past

or read a guide on how to write a

business plan you might have seen a

section that focused on projections so

sales projections or new customer

acquisition projections or market share

projections and if you've tried to write

a business plan in the past and you

tried to write a section you may have

found it very difficult and chances are

that's because you're running a small

business or maybe you've just started

your business and it's really difficult

to make accurate projections or

projections at all for that matter if

you don't have any data to base them on

and that's why I'd recommend that if you

are just starting your company or you've

only been in business for a couple of

years then instead of trying to create

projections you instead simply set goals

you can decide exactly how long you want

to make your goals for but a good place

to start would be to set some one-year

goals and also some five-year goals that

way you know what you need to work on

right now but you also know where you're

aiming longer-term for each time frame

you can set whatever goals you'd like

however some that I might recommend our

number of sales total revenue profit

impact in terms of the number of

customers who you help or how wide you

spread your message and development

which could be the extent to which

you've advanced the product that you

create and offer or to what extent

you've built your company and of course

when setting goals it's always important

to set specific measurable goals and to

set a deadline for when you're planning

to reach somebody all right that's

everything you need to include in your

business plan as you can see it's six

simple pages and you probably already

know most of the information that will

be going into this business plan already

there are many other pieces of

information that you may want to include

in your business plan and of course

you're more than welcome to include any

relevant information that describes how

you successfully run your

and how you plan to reach your goals

however my final piece of advice for you

is to make sure that you don't over

complicate things more words are not

better in fact your business plan will

be the most useful if you keep it short

and relatively simple because if you

write a document that's 20 40 or more

pages long chances are high that nobody

will ever even go back and read it ever

again as I mentioned earlier on I put a

neatly organized outline of this

business plan together for you there's a

link in the description below where you

can download it for free if you have any

feedback on it be sure to let me know

I'd recommend that you download it and

print it out now and to schedule some

time on your calendar so that you

actually get around to filling it out

because writing a business plan is one

of those things that can have a big

long-term impact on your business but

because it isn't actually urgent you

might put it off indefinitely and until

you make the time to write your business

plan your business will continue to be

disorganized and not as strategic as it

could be all right well that is

everything for today's video if you

enjoyed this video or found it helpful

then please hit that like button to let

me know and also consider subscribing to

my youtube channel I make two videos

here every single week about

entrepreneurship success and personal

development and if you like this video

and you won't want to miss the next one

thank you so much for watching my name

is Gillian Perkins and I look forward to

seeing you again next time

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