Before setting out to create your own business, it’s essential to get your ideas straight. Defining and formalizing a business project is an essential starting point, and most often involves drawing up a business plan.
It allows you to mature your project in an objective and thoughtful way, and is also an indispensable presentation tool for finding partners and external financing.
🚀 We describe how to draw up a good business plan and offer you a ppt template to help you put it together.
This section should be brief, but comprehensive. It’s short, but very important, because it’s the famous “first impression” you give to your potential partners.
The essential points to address are :
- Company name
- Activity description
- Origin of the project
- Targeted audience
- Market size
- Main competitors
- Market opportunities
Introducing the founders
Often included in the operational summary, the presentation of the founding team deserves a section of its own. Knowing who is behind the project, and what their roles in the company will be, is important forbuilding confidence with potential investors.
Never forget that, even in the age of business 2.0, automation and artificial intelligence, it’s still people who make successful companies.
The aspects to be presented for each founder are :
- Career path
- Specific skills
- Future role in the company
- Possibly a personal introduction: married, children, hobbies…
Beware, however, of this last part, which can be a double-edged sword. In a professional context, it’s best to emphasize complementary skills, rather than relying on “sympathy capital”.
Corporate values reflect the vision of the company’s leaders.
This is an essential question that your future partners (suppliers, customers, bankers, etc.) and employees will be asking themselves.
“At a time of growing ecological awareness and sustainable development, we believe that our smartphone repair and recycling business can appeal to a wide audience while having a positive impact both socially and environmentally.”
This quote from the automotive magnate, popularized once again by Steve Jobs, encourages us not to follow market research, but to anticipate it. This approach worked for these two genius entrepreneurs, but they are the exceptions that hide the millions of others whose adventure ended in abject failure.
To have a good chance of success, it’s best to offer customers what they want, or what they’re going to want in the near future. You therefore need to analyze in detail :
What solutions are already on the market? Who are your competitors – their products, services, prices, geographical presence?
Who are your target customers? What are its habits, its present and future expectations, its purchasing power?
What are the unmet needs? What are the solutions to these needs? What’s the advantage over the competition?
Marketing and sales strategy
Among the many methods for defining your marketing strategy, the most widely used is Kotler’s 4 Ps. Also known as the marketing mix, this method enables you to define the 4 variables essential to a good marketing strategy:
A good communication strategy involves two steps:
Define the company’s brand image:
It takes into account the company’s values and the message to be conveyed, as well as the graphic charter.
Promote the company and its products:
Website, trade show participation, social networking, canvassing, advertising…
The famous Business Model is the economic part of the Business Plan. It enables us to estimate a project’s profitability and sustainability. It is mainly based on :
- Evaluate sales by estimating sales and their evolution. It is common practice to run three simulations: pessimistic, optimistic and probable.
- Not only are creation costs taken into account, but also operating costs.
- Define the investments needed to launch and develop your business, both in terms of material resources (a premises and an oven for a pizzeria) and skills (a pizzaiolo and a waiter).
- Available resources, to determine financing requirements.
This part is extremely important for anyone looking for investors, bank financing or grant applications.
Starting a business is expensive, so you need to think about financing, which can come from a number of sources:
- Shareholders’ equity
- State support for business start-ups
- External investors
These sources of financing and their expected amounts must be detailed in your business plan. In any case, equity investment in a project is a guarantee when it comes to finding other sources of financing.
Business plan template
To help you formalize your business idea, the Altermès teams have prepared a ppt (power point) business plan template that can also be converted to pdf 🚀
💡 To go further than the business plan, discover our white paper on business creation and become an entrepreneur too 🚀
👆 If you need help creating your business plan, call on our team of professionals