A business plan is an absolute must for any budding entrepreneur. You need to draw it up so that you know what the chances are of your idea succeeding and what needs to be done to achieve success in the industry. However, many entrepreneurs approach this subject on the basis of “it will work out somehow”, which ends in painful failure. When drawing up a business plan, you need to be careful not to make the typical mistakes that will make your vision of running your business crumble quickly anyway.
Creating a business plan on your knees
This is a basic mistake that most often results from underestimating how crucial a well-drafted business plan is. Some entrepreneurs, especially very young ones, rely solely on their positive attitude. They do not see the risks, they spread a vision of quick success and huge revenues.
The result is not a business plan, but an unrealistic laurel for their idea. Creating a business plan can take many weeks. If you’ve done it in an hour, it’s certainly just a puff piece.
Overly optimistic assumptions
A business plan is there to know how to react in case of failures. If the strategy has been developed with integrity, the entrepreneur will have full confidence that the actions he has taken will eventually bear fruit.
Basing a business plan on unrealistic assumptions is an easy way to make problems for yourself. If you assume, for example, that you will acquire 1,000 customers in the first month of business, which is almost impossible, you will quickly become stressed. This is because you will not be able to implement a plan that was too optimistic from the start.
Failure to define your target group in detail
This is a very common mistake that stems from the entrepreneur not really knowing who he or she is addressing. Assuming that “if there’s a whip, there’s a horse” is pure naivety. You need to know who your customer is. What age he or she is, where he or she most often looks for products, how much he or she is prepared to spend on them, what might catch his or her attention.
Without this, you will not be able to implement any promotional campaign, because all your actions will fall on deaf ears.
Superficial treatment of brand relevance
A key element of your business plan should be the initial development of a strategy to build a strong, recognisable brand. One that will ultimately sell on its own, even without having to invest in advanced advertising activities. If you take the topic of branding lightly and do not include the costs associated with brand building in your business plan, you are bound to lose out to the competition.
Developing a business plan is only seemingly a simple matter. Believe, however, that the opposite is true. At this stage, therefore, it pays very much to enlist the help of professionals, including business consultants, who will unsentimentally point out the weak points of your idea and thus save you from making costly mistakes.