Does the idea of running your own business sound exciting? Do you have a business up and running and want to take it to the next level?
After coaching hundreds of entrepreneurs at various stages of their evolution, I’ve found that the answers to these 5 questions can make or break any endeavor. Of course there are lots of other areas that must be addressed, however these will get you moving in the right direction quickly.
Shhh, don’t tell anyone. Once you have these answers, you’ve created a basic and relatively painless (dare I say it?) Down and Dirty Business Plan™.
Are you ready? Go for it!
1. What problem do you solve?
You MUST begin here. If you don’t know what problem you solve, you don’t have a snowball’s chance. What real need do your potential customers/clients have that isn’t be fully addressed yet? Where’s their pain?
2. For whom do you solve it? or What is your niche?
In today’s economy, the best (many say the only) way to market your goods or services is to be very specific about targeting your potential customers. You can locate them, they can find you, and others can refer to you. This is scary for most entrepreneurs because it means saying “No" to some people. Let it go. It works!
3. Who’s your competition?
It’s time to become a stealth researcher. Who else is doing anything like what you’re doing? What’s their niche? How do they market? What do they charge? How long have they been in business? How are they unique?
4. How will you market your business?
Study your competition. What’s working for them? Model their success. Improve it. Think outside the box. Where does your niche hang out? Will you network, place ads in local papers, or do some PR? How about using Google pay per clicks?
5. Why you?
Why will your potential customers go to you instead of the competition? What makes you uniquely qualified to solve their problem(s)? Is there a specific solution you have that they don’t? Can you be more cost effective and/or efficient? Is your service unparalleled? If you don’t know why they’d choose you, your market won’t know why either!
So there you have it - your Down and Dirty Business Plan™. Feel free to revisit your answers and tweak them as you take in new information and experiences.
Take care of business and remember to have fun! Suz
Since 1992, Suzan Fiskin has loved being a Master Coach for ADD-ish entrepreneurs (and most entrepreneurs are ADD-ish!) as well as a motivational speaker http://www.motivationalspeaker.com She served on the Boards of the Forum of Women Entrepreneurs, Association of Women in Technology and the Professional Coaches and Mentors Association. She has a free online assessment, bi-weekly teleconference calls and a number of other resources for ADD-ish entrepreneurs on her website http://www.ADD-ish.com