If you are trying to attract funding for your business, particularly equity investment, you will need to know how to create a business plan that stands out from the crowd. The statistics for successful equity investment are rather damning to say the least (<5% are successful) and the reality is that if you want to be the successful bracket your plan will need to jump off the page. Equity investors read hundreds of business plans each year and most of them are tossed before they reach the end of the first paragraph. Learning how to create a business plan that stands out will increase your chances of attracting funding significantly.
5 Key Factors To Make Your Plan Stand Out
A Compelling Executive Summary
The Executive Summary is key. It is the page of your business plan that summarizes the rest of your plan and in many ways is the most important part because it will grab the investor’s attention and spark interest in the rest of your business plan. It should be concise (1 page preferably), and compelling. It should deliver the key information required to make an initial assessment right up front. This is important because the attention span of equity investors when scanning business plans is notoriously short. When thinking about how to create your business plan think about getting the key information in the investors face so it is easy for them to assess.
Innovative Product Or Service
In short they are looking for uniqueness. Equity investors make serious money through investing in businesses that provide a unique selling proposition (“UPS”) that is scalable. If you can demonstrate clearly that you have a product that has an aspect of uniqueness and that you can scale it up, this will hook the investor to reading the rest of your plan.
Deep Market Knowledge
Demonstrating market knowledge is essential because in order to grow there has to be a viable forward market. Equity investors are all about growth. Historical market knowledge is great but if you can demonstrate using reasonable analysis and market indicators that there is forward potential in that market it increase the chances of the investor remaining interested. When considering how to create a business plan that really grabs attention you should make sure that your market and customer knowledge is based in fact rather than a whimsical summary of what you think.