Plan your successful business in 5 steps laptop on a desk with a lamp plants and books

Plan Your Successful Business in 5 Easy Steps

Before you even decide what candle vessels you want, what wax you’re planning to use, or what fragrance oil you will purchase. You need to make a business plan. A business plan will guide you into what direction you will be heading your business towards. Like when you go to a job interview and the interviewer asks you where do you see yourself in 5 years? Usually this question will throw you off guard and if you don’t have a plan then your business will throw you off guard.


In today's blog, we will discuss the 5 most easy and essential aspects of a candle business plan and why you should create a business plan to successfully grow your company. But first, let’s define what’s a business plan.


A business plan is your business road map and where you want your business to be in a step format. It’s also a good document to write out so that everyone involved in your business knows how the business is projected to grow and where it should be headed. Keep in mind that this business plan is not set in stone and it should be revised, analyzed, and updated to see if the goals were met or not. If the goals are met then set new ones and if the goals aren’t met then strategize on ways that everyone can work on to meet that goal or modify that goal if it’s unattainable at the moment.


So to put it plainly a business plan is a written document with set goals and expectations that your business will meet in a certain period in every aspect of your business.


If you’re planning on getting a bank loan or attracting prospective investors, then it will be a good idea to have a business plan so that you can be prepared to answer all their questions. Also, most banks will require you to have a business plan if you’re trying to take out a business loan. It kind of means that you’re serious about your business and they have assurance that you’ll be making the money to pay that loan back.

 

business plan written on a black chalkboard

 

 

There are many business plan templates you can download from the internet but there’s certainly no wrong or right way to do one. Just as long as the basic five elements exist.


Executive summary: This section includes your company’s slogan/philosophy/mission statement. Who are the employees and their leadership roles in the company. 

Products and services: This part includes your products and services and their benefits to the consumer along with prices and production.

Market analysis: This area will focus on the competition and the demand for the product you’re selling. This should also include the strength and weaknesses of the product such as when it’s the peak season for selling and what are the analytic trends.

Marketing strategy: What are you going to do to increase sales, get innovative and creative, and what are you going to do to retain customers. This is where running advertisements on social media will fall in. The ads can be paid or it can be free by being active on social media.

Financial planning: Include your estimated expenses for items and supplies necessary to run your business. Make sure to detail those finances with overhead items such as electricity and office supplies as well as all the items necessary to produce your products.

Budgeting: Finally, and the most important is setting a budget to maintain your business afloat.

 

reading glasses a pen and a notepad for business plan

 

Now that you have a good foundation, let’s get into the 5 easy steps you should consider before starting your business and how to successfully plan your business.


Step 1 Why are you starting a business? 

Knowing why you’re starting this business will give you a clear overview as to where you see your business in a week, a month, a year, and beyond. Is it for extra income or to supplement your own, is it because you want to quit your job and work from home and be your own boss, is it because you need a job and this is a temporary move, or is it a hobby that turned into a business. Knowing why you’re starting your business will also give you a clear view as to which direction you’re planning to take your business.


Step 2 Budgeting. 

What is your budget? First, you need to be aware that starting your own business is not cheap. In my video How Much I Spent in My Business you can see that when you tally everything up you’ll be left with a huge never ending spending list. You need to set a budget and you need to know what you need ahead of time before you venture into naming your business, getting a website, making your business legal, and getting hasty supplies.

SIDE NOTE: I’m super guilty of buying things on a whim.

A good idea before you purchase things is to consult with someone or at least put it into writing and then come back to that idea in a few days to see how you feel about it. If the idea still makes sense then go for it and make a list of supplies you’ll need to purchase. If when you do come back to the idea and you’re either not financially ready to execute the plan or you need more employees to go further with the new product, then don’t move on with it.

This brings me back to step 2 budgeting. You will definitely need to create a list of things that you will need for your business including office supplies, a cricut or minc machine (these two pieces of equipment are very important for creating a lot of things for your business) software that you will need, subscriptions that you may need (Canva, Amazon, professional email, or my personal favorite email marketing software such as Constant Contact), and any fees associated with legalizing your business, how much will the website cost, advertisement that you may run, and are you going to outsource the things that you’re not so great at, like for example, creating labels or your logo design.


Step 3 Research your Market. 

Who will be your target audience? Have you created a buyer avatar? In my new book which I’m currently writing I dive very deep into creating a buyer avatar. Essentially a buyer avatar is exactly what it is creating a persona of your target audience. What niche would you be targeting? Sports, Music, Cooking, Aromatherapy to name a few.

We’ll include here as well what are your marketing plans? This will help in targeting your customers. This is a great place to start thinking about what incentives you can give to your customers and what they will value most. Not every customer wants free stuff or percentage off. Some people enjoy valuable information that you can provide or teach them about themselves. So think about what you can provide to your customers and make a list. Checkout my How to Find Your Target Audience video for more details.


Step 4 Have you looked at your yearly quarters 

Your yearly quarter are divided into three sets. The first is from Jan - April, the second is from May - Aug, and the last is from Sep - Dec. You need to know what are your marketing plans for those quarters because there will be slow months ahead and you will need a plan to stay afloat and ahead of your customers' buying needs. This is why you’ll need to know what holidays fall in those quarters, prep for those months with collections, and new items. I have a video that will guide you in creating 10 Ideas To Grow Your Business Without Spending Too Much Money or you can read the post here.


Step 5 Business startup

In your business startup you will have your business name, logo, and colors. This is where you’ll conduct product research, you’ll list tems you want to introduce in your business such as packaging options and label creation. You’ll also look into what social media platforms you’ll want to venture into and where most of your target audience hangs around. You’ll also look into the legal framework of running your business such as getting an LLC or sole proprietorship. You’ll be researching which bank you’ll want to open a business account. Which website platform you’ll want to sell your products and services and where you’ll purchase your website domain. 


These are the 5 steps that I would recommend to create a business plan before you start your business. Don’t jump in before you have a plan. If I missed anything let me know. I have great ideas and I sometimes over plan and I know I definitely over spend. So don’t forget to like, subscribe, and leave me a comment below.

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