Your startup business plan is the key to your new business’ success. A business plan gives business owners a path to follow, mapping out each step from ideation to funding to preparation to day one and throughout the first couple years.
One of the main things many people use their business plan for is to attract investors and lenders. People who will help you fund your business need to feel comfortable in their investment and know that there will be a return on that investment. This type of business plan needs to anticipate and answer their questions so you need to get it right on the first time through, as you probably only have one chance to secure funding from each source.
What goes into a business plan for investors?
Your startup business plan should attract investors who can help you get your business up and running. The primary elements it needs to include are:
- Company background and executive summary: Provide a history of the company, what products or services you will provide, and what problems or needs you solve. Basically, this section should provide what value your company will bring.
- Market opportunity: Include research on the industry and market, the target audience, market size and segments, competitors, and your sales and marketing strategies. Who are you going after and how will you convert them from prospect to customer?
- Products or services: Describe your product or service. What are you doing and how do you do it? Include photos, if available. Be sure to explain the manufacturing process and how you will go about getting these products. What are your competitive advantages? Include patents, copyrights and trademarks, if applicable.
- People – leadership and personnel: Investors care about your business, but they really care about the people. They want to know who they are investing in, and that those people are the best team to ensure success of their investments. Include executive leadership, advisors and board members, as well as any roles you are still hiring for.
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- Milestones and timelines: Include timelines for your key hires, financing, sales goals, and new product launches. Show when you think each item will be achieved, based on your goals.
Any supplementary documents to these aspects of the plan can go in an appendix, including resumes or bios of key leadership, patents, testimonials, financial statements and more.
Your startup business plan is not only for you but for those who will give you financial support to start the company. Work with an experienced business plan writer at Bargain Business Plan to create an effective document to get you started.