Before sitting down to write a business plan, you must do market research and breakdown the various details of the business you are looking to start. The following questions should be answered.

1.      How much money are you looking to raise? How will you use these proceeds?

In order to come up with this number, you need to figure out exactly what you need to do in order to get your business off the ground. This is an example of a Use of Proceeds Breakdown:

Item Amount
Employee Salaries (2) $100,000
Lease $5,000
Tutoring & Consulting Supplies $5,000
Transportation $2,000
Miscellaneous $38,000
Total $150,000

By finding out exactly what you need in order to get your business started, you will then come up with the amount you need to raise. In this example, you need to raise $150,000.

2.      Who is going to be your Management Team? Are you going to do this by yourself?

3.      Exactly what products/services will your business offer? How do you plan to offer them? You should make a differentiation between your immediate products/services and your future ones.

4.      Who is your target market? How large is this group? Who are the competitors in your area?

5.      Why is your business going to succeed? What makes you different then your competition?

6.      What steps do you need to take to get this business off the ground? For example, you may need to search for space to lease, hire a management team, write a marketing plan, develop a website, etc.

7.      How much will you charge for your products/services? How much will it cost you to create your product or services? What are the exact expenses going to be of your business? These questions pertain to the financial pro-forma in your business plan. To better understand exactly what you need for this section, go to the following website: //q-a-of-the-day/question-what-components-do-you-need-to-write-a-financial-pro-forma.

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