This article is part of our “Business Planning Guide” —a curated list of our articles that will help you with the planning process!
Every business has long-term and short-term goals, sales targets, and expense budgets—a business plan encompasses all of those things, and is as useful to a startup trying to raise funds as it is to a 10-year-old business that’s looking to grow.
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Validate a new business idea, or quickly develop your business strategy by starting with a one-page pitch. Do this before you plan!
A business plan is a formal statement of business goals , reasons they are attainable, and plans for reaching them. It may also contain background information about the organization or team attempting to reach those goals.
Business plans may target changes in perception and branding by the customer , client, taxpayer , or larger community. When the existing business is to assume a major change or when planning a new venture, a 3 to 5 year business plan is required, since investors will look for their investment return in that timeframe. 
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The Business Model Canvas (BMC) gives you the structure of a business plan without the overhead and the improvisation of a ‘back of the napkin’ sketch without the fuzziness (and coffee rings).
Creating a business plan will help you achieve your entrepreneurial goals. A clear and compelling business plan provides you with a guide for building a successful enterprise focused on achieving your personal and financial goals. It can also help persuade others, including banks, to invest in what you are creating.
You can also download a free cash flow forecast template or a business plan template on the Start Up Loans website to help you manage your finances.
A business plan is a written document that describes your business. It covers objectives, strategies, sales, marketing and financial forecasts.
This article is part of both our “Business Startup Guide” and our “Business Planning Guide” —curated lists of our articles that will get you up and running in no time!
You’ve reviewed what a business plan is , and why you need one to start and grow your business. It’s time to dig into the process of actually writing a business plan.
List and discuss the alternatives that were considered before arriving at the recommended strategy. Alternatives might include discontinuing a product, re-branding, positioning as a premium or value product, etc.
Discuss why the strategy was selected, then the marketing mix decisions (4 P''''s) of product, price, place (distribution), and promotion.
Business networking is an effective low-cost marketing method for developing sales opportunities and contacts, based on referrals and introductions - either face-to-face at meetings and gatherings, or by other contact methods such as phone, email, and increasingly social and business networking websites.
The shortened term 'networking' can be confused with computer networking/networks, which is different terminology, relating to connection and accessibility of multiple computer systems.