Tips for Writing a One-Page Business Plan
The old adage ‘less is more’ might just prove to be true when it comes to making a business plan. Minimalism is effective, and recent business pitches have seen entrepreneurs and start-ups utilizing the one-page business plan to get the funding or external investment conversation started.
Benefits of condensing your business plan
A one-page business plan is all about efficiency, summarizing your strategy into one easy-to-share page. It’s a handy snapshot you or your team can refer to every now and then to ensure you’re on track. While each specific goal can be flushed out with more detail and specificity, the concise one-page business plan enables you to create a straightforward strategy that is easy to pitch, explain, and compare. The readability of your business plan – such as keywords and short phrases – means that important information stands out, assisting you and your team with meetings and assessments.
Don’t discard important detail.
A one-page business plan mustn’t be missing any crucial detail. Just because this is a shorter version of your business plan doesn’t mean you can skimp on the research needed to back up your objectives and strategies. Your condensed business plan must have one paragraph on identifying the problem and offer a solution. Layout who you will serve and what problem you’ll solve for them with your strategic and innovative plan. And don’t forget to explain exactly how it will be profitable.
Include a Market Analysis
Include a couple of sentences about your primary target market and the customer or client needs within this market that you will be addressing. Describe your market niche, keeping in mind that the more specific the target market, the better. Conclude this section with detail about how you plan to differentiate your product after your target customer base.
Include your team and their titles. Who is who in the business, but keep it short. If investors have questions, they can always ask for your resume and Linkedin profile link.
And a Competitive Analysis
In your shorter plan, highlight a few key points about the competition: Which products and services are most competitive to yours? Where will your product or service have the most significant opportunities? Where will you face the most severe threat? Keep your answers short and to the point.
This is what sets a one-page plan apart from longer descriptions. You need to (very briefly) explain how your business will be different from your competitors. Describe your unique selling points (USP). It will be difficult to craft this section into just a few sentences, but by doing so, you’ll not only have a clearer idea of what you’re doing, but you’ll also have a short and compelling pitch.
Products and Services
Write a sentence or two on your plan to position products/services and a competitive evaluation of these products/services. Provide detailed descriptions and focus on differentiation. Avoid too much deep technical detail and clarify what you’re bringing to market that nobody else is.
Marketing, Sales, and Financials
Focus on the one marketing or sales method that sets you apart. Quickly explain your strategy and how it will drive results and revenue. Keep your financial detail tightly focused on profit and loss projection. Highlight profit and loss projections, including gross sales, gross profit margin; selling, general and administrative expenses; and net profit. If you feel confident, include sales targets. The main objective of a one-page business plan is to hit the high points relevant to your business and leave the nitty-gritty details for a longer document (and hopefully a more extended business plan discussion) with a prospective partner or investor.
Have questions about your one-page business plan? Get in touch. I am always happy to help.