A winning business plan tells a story to funders about the company in question. Like any good story, the strategy must be appealing and exciting, providing more within its pages than first meets the eye. Rather than being a narrative of the past, a business plan is as much a narrative of the future, describing how the company will function, behave, and succeed over the next several years.
The strategy starts with exposition, setting the platform for the company. This includes introducing the players, like the founders, customers, and competitors. This also must consist of describing the industry position in detail, wherein a prominent issue for a customer group is going to be presented. This problem arises from an unsatisfied need for clients and also the inability of current businesses and options to satisfy that need. This issue generates the industry opportunity your company will act upon. The business analysis, customer analysis, and competitive analysis segments supply this exposition and history.
The action of this “story” is the plans of the company, detailed in the advertising, operations, and Weave software management strategies. Promotion is the first step, as customers must be attained with the product or service using a combination of advertisements, pricing, supply, and branding. The operations strategy clarifies that the functions of the company will need to execute daily and how it will grow over time. The management team outlines details why the founders are qualified to direct and what their specific responsibilities will be. Together, these departments show a focused, capable business which moves forward to take advantage of this market opportunity seen and also to discover future possibilities.
If there’s a climax to the story to get a funder, it’s in the financial projections. Assuming the opportunity is appealing, the plan is set up, and the credentials of the founders are suitable, funders will expect to see yields that more than compensate them for the risk of investing in or lending to the company. Returns to funders may be shown through interest payments, dividends, or the Weave growth in value of their company resulting in a strategic sale. The financial plan must provide a narrative to show what these financial results will be along with the financial statements to encourage these words with numbers.