Whether you are applying for a loan or not, a detailed business plan can help set you up for success. The process of creating a business plan can be an opportunity to reflect on the future success of your business and how you will get there. Business plans can be revised as needed but should serve as a vision for what you’re working to build every day.
What is a business plan?
A business plan is a detailed document that outlines a business and its objectives and plans to achieve them. Intended for an external and internal audience, business plans can be created for new or well-established businesses. Business plans can be used to capture investors, secure loans, or establish alignment with executives or employees. Business plans should be reviewed periodically and updated to ensure they remain current. When creating a business plan, it’s important to ensure it’s concise but detailed. It should include an executive summary, mission statement, products, services, finances, marketing strategy, budgets, and more. Any part that plays a role in bringing the vision of your company to life should be included.
How business plans can be used to help you secure financing
Lenders need to buy into the financial future of a business with confidence. While black-and-white documentation such as profit and loss statements can help them do that, they often want to see the future potential of the business. When applying for a loan lenders want to know what the funds are to be used for. They also want to see where current funds are being allocated. A business plan can draw a detailed picture of the lender so that they can unlock the confidence they need to approve a loan. Of course, other documentation will likely be required too, a detailed business plan can certainly help.
What should you include in a business plan to get funded?
Presentation matters when it comes to a business plan. To ensure completeness, do a thorough review to make sure all you need is included. While what is appropriate can vary, here are some key components that most business plans should include.
- Cover page: Including a cover page followed by a table of contents is a good way to organize and set up the presentation of a business plan. While a business plan is a way to deliver information, it’s also a way to show off your brand and creativity. Help your business stand out with a little bit of pop. The goal should always be to make people feel connected to your brand.
- Executive summary: Business plans should include an executive summary. An executive summary should be a high-level overview to describe your company, products, history, path forward, and such. It should summarize your business plan within one page. Think carefully about how and what the summary says – it’s more important than you think.
- Market analysis: In our competitive world, you’ll need to demonstrate that you have a competitive edge. By showing a market analysis and your understanding of it, a business plan can demonstrate the likelihood of your success.
- Products and services: In a business plan, products and services should be highlighted. Summarize what you do, what you sell, and how you meet customer needs. Pricing can be included too.
- Growth opportunity: Identifying ways to grow can demonstrate to lenders why you need to borrow money. By not only painting a picture of what success looks like but laying out how to get there, you can earn buy-in. Be sure to support this section with facts and detailed events that will pave the way.
- Finances: Lenders want to know that even though you need to borrow money, your business is financially sound. While you may want to make the numbers appear better than they are, we urge you to adhere to the side of truth as it can cause problems to extend the truth.
Tips on how to write a business plan for securing funding
Words are incredibly powerful, and presentation is key. Consider both of these factors when putting together a business plan. While you want to share your brand and culture with lenders or backers, you also want to provide accurate and real information that can aid them in making decisions.
- Show off your brand
While a business plan is a serious document, you still want to tactfully display the personality of your brand – in everything you do. Parties that view your business plan should be able to connect with your brand and understand the values you stand for. As you craft your plan, keep it to the point, but have fun with it.
- Ensure information is up to date
Business plans need to be updated from time to time. Not so often that there’s no follow through on ideas, but often enough to where it’s always current – even if you are not using it to get a loan. Business plans should be ready to go at all times. After all, planning is critical.
How Kickfurther can help
Getting funding can be a challenge, and while a business plan can help, there’s more to it than that. Other considerations such as the pros and cons and cost will need to be considered. Regardless of how established your business is, you’ll need to find an option that works. At Kickfurther we help small businesses access working capital to fund inventory. Fund up to 100% of your inventory while providing flexible payment terms that you control. Enjoy no immediate repayments and a non-dilutive funding solution that’s up to 30% lower cost than other options. Plus, funding at Kickfurther is not a debt. Our community of buyers can review your business profile allowing you to find like-minded partners.
Part of your business success is your ability to present products and services that sell. Revamping or creating a business plan can help you secure the funding you need.
Grow your business with working capital. Create a free business profile at Kickfurther today!