By Lika Ramlal at June 04 2019 04:44:16
Industry Analysis _ How does your product or service compare with what is currently on the market? What is the trend in the overall industry? What have been the total sales in this industry over the previous 3 to 5 years? What new products or technologies have had the biggest impact on this industry recently? What is the future outlook for these and what trends are emerging? Who are the competitors, where are they located, and how are they doing? What advantage do you offer over them? Who is buying this product or service now? Describe the typical customer for this product or service. Are there emerging markets or market segments? Where does this product or service currently perform best? Possible Data Sources: trade associations; trade journals; attorneys & accountants dealing with the industry; industry salespeople; state business websites; focus groups.
Some of the questions a growth business plan might ask you are: _ Are you comfortable that the market wants and is willing to buy your product or service? _ Is your product or service priced so it is competitive in your market? _ What's different about your product or service? Why would a customer purchase it over someone else's? _ Is your market big enough to support your business? What about 15 years into the future? _ If you wanted a better lifestyle, what would your business need to do to give you that lifestyle? _ How much sales would your business need to generate to give you that income? _ How much sales would your business need to generate to give you the income you want 15 years into the future? _ What will be the cost of your labor and material? _ What will your expenses run? _ How much will it cost to overcome the capacity constraints that will occur as your business grows to meet your income requirements? _ Will your profit give you the income you want in the future and at the same time maintain a healthy business for you as well?
Creating a Marketing Plan _ Similar to a business plan, the marketing plan spells out how you will market to new customers and retain current ones. The marketing plan should identify your target customers and develop a strategy to reach them effectively. Your marketing plan usually includes market research that gives you a profile of the ideal customer. As with your other plan, it is important to identify any strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats that may affect your company's operations.
It could be, for example, the risk of a change in the economic environment _ what are your contingency plans for that in terms of dealing with such a situation? There may be many other risks as well specific to your particular sphere of operation, but that ability to plan ahead for all scenarios makes for a robust business plan. When I have received business plans, the very best responses come from people who have looked at the risks and have an answer for every question. What you never want is to throw a scenario at your plan and have to answer "I don't know what I would do in that situation". You want to plan for every possible contingency, and certainly all the major risks to the ongoing success of your business.