What is a Business Plan?

Once you have decided to start a business in Singapore, the next step is to draw up and document a business plan. Business planning involves taking a business idea and then examining it systematically through a logical and clear process so that you can create a blueprint or a road map for your business. Potential lenders or investors as well as potential business partners will need reassurance that they are looking at a business that is going to be viable and profitable in the long run and this is what the business plan will do. Some of the key areas to be addressed in a business plan are as follows:

The first is to determine the type of business entity and whether the business will be a sole proprietorship, a partnership or a limited company. Much will depend on the precise circumstances in which you want to operate but many new businesses start off as sole proprietorships because this is the simplest and most uncomplicated way of doing business. You can also commence business quickly.

You will next need to determine whether you want to start a new business from scratch, takeover an existing business or get yourself a franchise. Obviously, a new business is a high-risk venture because you have no customers and an unknown product or service. You should start on a small scale by limiting your investment and then gradually scale up your business as it establishes itself and the profits start to flow. The franchise is a lower risk method of getting into business because you will receive the training and support of the parent and you can leveraged on a brand without spending money on expensive marketing or branding. You will also need to make less of an investment.

You will then have to determine the product or service that you are going to sell. You have to determine how you are different from your competitors and what unique selling proposition you offer. After all, you can expect customers to come to you only if you offer something that is newer, better or cheaper. You can either position yourself on the basis of price or on the basis of value. If you offer value, you can expect a premium on the pricing whereas, if you compete on the basis of price, you have to offer acceptable quality at the cheapest price.

Finally you have to define your target market and your target customer and create a buyer persona. The more precise your identification of your target customer, the more effective the sales and marketing strategies that you can create. The way you position a product or service in the market will depend on what kind of perception you want to create in your target customer. If you can identify precise demographics such as location, occupation, income and gender, you can create meaningful marketing communication that would have a favorable impact on your target market and generate the kind of leads that can be converted into customer sales.

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