All business plans should establish strategy, tactics, milestones, tasks, assumptions, and essential numbers (projected sales, direct costs, expenses, and cash flow). All business plans should develop accountability and tracking.
There are four main chapters in a business plan—opportunity, execution, company overview, and financial plan. The opportunity chapter of your business plan is where the real meat of your plan lives—it includes information about the problem that you`re solving, your solution, who you plan to sell to, and how your product or service fits into the existing competitive landscape.
This can be as simple as having a mentor or partner review elements of your plan, or conducting market research and speaking directly to your potential customer base.
If you are writing a business plan to get a bank loan or because you`re asking angel investors or venture capitalists for funding, you must include the details of what you need in the executive summary.
Write your plan using language that your audience will understand. Accommodate your investors, and keep explanations of your product simple and direct, using terms that everyone can understand. You can always use the appendix of your plan to provide the full specs if needed.
Likewise, your business plan should answer these questions during the short-term period, particularly one year; specifically, what your business`s goals are for the current year, and what is essential in order to make your first year a success.