February 22, 2006

Business Plan Basics

Most entrepreneurs look forward to writing a business plan the way a vegetarian looks forward to a Big Mac.

Let’s face it: It’s obvously not a fun-filled task, but it is obviously not an optional one.

Unfortunately, many entrepreneurs post their business plans on FundingUniverse.com with proposals like this:

“I have a fantastic new product that I just received a patent for.  All I need is $2,000,000 for marketing and hiring and this thing goes through the roof!  Contact me a.s.a.p!”

Proposals like this will not attract investors — no way, no how.

If you want your business plan to catch the attention of investors, here are a few things you can do before your post your plan on FundingUniverse.com:

  1. Learn – If you don’t know what should be in a business plan, its going to be tough to pound one out.  Talk to your local SBA, university business school, or check out the FundingUniverse.com resource centerSCORE also provides a lot of great resources
  2. Ask for help — Never written a business plan before?  Don’t worry. there are alot of people out there who have.  Network with other entrepreneurs and find out what has worked with them.  FundingUniverse.com has a huge collection of free sample business plans from real, successful companies.  Download a few and see what other entrepreneurs have done to raise money.
  3. Edit, edit, edit — Once you have written your plan, have at least ten people that you respect review it for you.  Get as much feedback as you can.

There is obviously much more to writing a good business plan, but these three steps are a good start.

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