5 Tips for a Successful Business Plan

It isn’t always easy to secure funding for a business, but with the following five tips you will be a step ahead of many competitors.

1. Put your past successes on display.
The best way to predict the future of a business is to look at the past of the person or executives running the business. If you are starting a new business, then you should highlight your past successes raising other companies from infancy to full growth. If your business has been funded before, then you will have to show that you were able to manage that capital wisely and reward your investors in some way. If you reached goals in operations or were able to penetrate a niche market through that funding, then you will be seen as a good investment for more funding.

2. Make your niche well known, not just your larger market.
It is easy to state a larger market that you will compete in, but if you can narrow it down to a very specific niche market you will get more attention from investors. For example, don’t just come off and say you have an electronic product that will compete in the medical field. The medical field is worth billions of dollars and is massive, so you need to narrow it down to a specific demographic within the medical field. Narrow it down to the type of medical product you are offering and a specific group of people who would buy it.

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3. Introduce your customers and explain why they will buy from you over others.
Your investors need to know that there is a demand in the market for your products and that you are the business to meet that demand. You need to come up with a plan on how you will reach your customers and then fulfill enough product to meet their needs. If your investors think you cannot reach customers, they won’t have faith in your ability to succeed.

4. Acknowledge your competition and show you can beat them.
Your investors want to know that you have a plan to lock customers into your services. You need to lock them into your company so your competitors are effectively locked out. Think of the bundles of services that cable companies often offer. They offer reduced rates if customers buy into three or four services rather than just one. They also allow customers to avoid fees if they switch from a competitor’s service. Your company needs a similar tactic to lock in customers and shut out competitors.

5. Make sure your financial projection for the company is realistic.
Would you be surprised to learn that most investors flip straight to the financial section of a business plan? Many do because they will only invest in a company that has realistic, favorable projections. If you start stretching the truth to make it look more favorable, you will lose face and won’t get the funding.

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