No matter how immersed in routine you are, worried about the expansion of your firm or the launch of new proposals, never underestimate the importance of good planning: the backbone of your actions and the fundamental pillar from which you will solidly build your company.
So that it really serves you as a road map through which to advance with projection and intelligence, we are going to present you with the questions to create your business plan.
We know that. Writing a business plan is by no means an easy task, but finding the right answers to the fundamental questions is critical if you want to lay the foundation for a scalable business and attract sufficient attention from new investors, partners and strategic allies.
And although many companies hide it, building their own business model has certainly been overwhelming. While the heads of the world’s most recognized firms smile in surprise and shrug their shoulders every time they are asked about their continued success, the truth is that they have certainly laid out future growth on the solid foundation of sound planning.
This is one of the most typical variables that divides CEOs, managers and executives who are aligned with results and goal achievement from those who are simply guided by instinct, frenzy and market speculation but do not even look closely at the elementary steps that their business plan should contain.
What need will your company seek to solve?
This is the first and most important question to be answered, a question that goes beyond the simple question “what does your company do?
It is one thing to describe your business in general, what it does or what products it offers; but if you want to take it to the next level, you must focus it on a need to be met. Try to discover in your niche market what your target is still missing and focus on satisfying it.
How will your business meet those needs?
Associated with the first point, consider including a mission statement, vision and corporate objectives detailing in these three aspects how your business will respond to that latent market need.
Your business plan should explain as concretely as possible how you will reach your potential customers and how you intend to maintain a constant relationship with them in order to help them solve their problems.
Just as digital communication has contributed substantially to improving customer service, it is also necessary to be aware that users are more intelligent and demanding than ever, so they will be waiting for your concrete response through various channels (newsletters, social networks, invitations to events and training, training resources, discount coupons, etc.) Do not waste the power that different channels have to channel their demands!
What makes your company different from the competition?
More and more firms are constantly entering or leaving the digital ecosystem. Objectively describing your business model and your competitive advantages will help you to outline a consistent action plan to maintain your position in the market. Find out what makes you different and unique from others and stick to that factor to stand out and stand out with emphasis.
Who are the key players in your business?
Regardless of whether your firm is conventional or modern, orthodox or flexible, you need to structure a kind of organizational chart to organize your resources not so much from a bureaucratic logic but in a more organic way: what is their degree of responsibility, their interaction with other departments, their level of deliverables and their involvement in the company’s decision making.
The areas of an organization are like the parts of a living organism, and as such, must constitute a harmonious and functional union. To do this, label each of the boxes with the name of the resource, the department it belongs to, who it reports to, which members it is responsible for, and what their knowledge, experience and responsibilities are.
What is the size of the market you want to position yourself in?
This question is valid more than anything else in case you are about to launch a new business or promote an additional mega product/service. Only after understanding the industry you are about to enter (its size, attractive value and profit potential) will you be able to justify whether it is really an opportunity.
Which Buyer Person is your business aimed at?
No matter how useful or practical your product or service is, there is no way you can sell it to the whole world. Being clear about who your target customer is will help you improve your marketing strategy and focus on each of your actions to nurture them and turn them into real consumers.
Think about specific factors such as age, gender, education, geographic location, job position or marital status and conduct preliminary market research to determine the best segmentation to move forward to build customer loyalty.
What will be your most effective marketing and sales strategies?
Promoting your business is as important as creating it. Otherwise, people will never know who you are or what you offer. So, once you have represented your potential customers, you will have to study their consumption habits, their ways of interacting and the information channels they frequent to develop and implement high-impact strategies to reach them.
Don’t worry if your marketing strategy starts with a series of basic actions that other companies similar to yours have already advanced on before. It never hurts to attend local fairs and events, offer free demos, conduct tutorials, publish content on authority pages or give away educational and training resources in exchange for your precious data.
What initial budget do you have to act with?
The financial section must take into account how much it will cost you to operate your business, month by month, and how much money you need to earn not only to cover those expenses but to obtain a profit that will not leave you operating at cost. Without going into accounting details, you must focus and prepare a folder that contemplates your entire business scenario.
How will you make your business profitable?
This seems to be one of the 10 most obvious questions to create your business plan to answer, but you might be surprised to learn that most managers do not include it in their planning. The most common response is usually “selling my amazing products or services”, but achieving this is not so easy!
To define your revenue flow, pricing structure, production, promotion and distribution costs, profit margins and investment in resources.
In this way, you can draw up a cleaner diagram that makes it clear what your operating expenses are, how much you need to sell to be profitable, who you are going to pay for their work and whether you will be helped by external financing or whether the funds will come from the company itself.
How will you measure the success of your business?
The hackneyed answer to this last question is usually unambiguous: by the money you earn. However, you can raise enough money and still not have a successful business. In fact, the answer is more complex: while profitability is the first thing you think about, the year’s balance sheet may have been dominated by the numbers in red, and therefore only an apparent lucrative prosperity.
Strangely enough, the database and customer satisfaction are two equally important indicators of profitability. If you have constantly growing contact lists, this constant movement will make your success limitless because you will always have new opportunities to conquer. And if, on top of that, you satisfy them with the attention and quality of your proposal, they will make you win new users!