5 Important Features of a Successful Business Plan

If you are in need of financing, you need remember the following 5 important features of a successful business plan:

1. Report your excellent track record.
Investors understand that an excellent indication of a company’ success in the future is how much success its executives and the company have had in the past. If the company has had financial backing in the past, it is wise to show how you handled this capital, used it to help your company grow, attained certain milestones, success against your competitors, and was able to reward your investors. If this is a new company, explain how the management staff you employ had helped other companies grow from birth into full-blown success stories.

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2. Show that you have knowledge of your niche and the ability to master it.
Today, niche is of the utmost importance for all types of businesses. If your company is competing inside the trillion-dollar healthcare market, it has to target its marketing efforts and products on one particular section of this large industry. An example of this would be networking products for use by family physicians located in California or other states in the area. As part of this your company winds up competing in the telecommunications, business services and electronics industries. This will direct your concentration in on a niche, which helps you increase profits on your marketing plans. Smart investors will admire your niche knowledge.

3. Show that you not only understand what your customers’ needs are, but also that you understand how to deliver them.
Investors look at the company’s abilities to develop constructive relationships with customers. Your business plan for your company has to clearly spell out why your business is the right one to deliver an unfulfilled market need. Your business plan should have not only an outline, but also a timeline for how it will deliver the product to its particular market. When you can’t deliver to your customers, your business can’t realize a profit, and nor will your investors. Show your investors that your relationship with customers is solid.

4. Explain the way you win over your customers and block your competition.
One excellent method of winning over (also called locking in) your customers is by offering the types of bundles of services that telecommunications companies do. When a customer buys one products, he will be given the chance to buy a collection of services, but at a discounted price. On top of this, now that he is a customer there are not installation fees unless he changes companies, which is an excellent lock-in strategy. Excellent customer service and products obviously are other strategies for locking in customers. These can keep you ahead of your competition, and help you build what is called barriers around your current customers. Which of these methods will you utilize to protect your revenue flow? Investors will ask.

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5. Set realistic financial projections.
Well-researched financial projections and assumptions show a company’s credibility and growth. At times, the financial part of a business plan is the only important thing to many investors. The projected financials and assumptions have to be perfectly realistic. Operating margin, revenues and penetrations per employee calculations have to be well researched, and consistent within the company to be seen as credible as far as the investors are concerned.

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