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Inconvenient Truths UK Business Plans

Start-up businesses are often too optimistic in their income forecasts

We all tend to be over optimistic. There are plenty of high profile, high value projects that ended up with a price tag many time greater than the initial budget forecast – the building of the Channel Tunnel or the Millennium Dome (now the O2 Arena in Greenwich) are just two examples. Getting input from professional business plan writers is one way to deal with this problem.

Having an active plan also means that you can monitor actual performance against your plan and take action if you see that things are going off course.

Business owners do not know what is in their business plans

This can happen when professional business plan writers are brought in. The plan they create is fabulous, it secures the funds the business needs, but all too often the business owner never really understood what was in their plan, so it is of little ongoing use and their business risks going off track. If you hire in professional business plan writers ensure you understand what they have said about your business and that you know how to monitor your performance against your plan.

Start-up companies do a bad job of identifying their target markets

Perhaps one of the most tricky elements is identifying your target markets. It is not necessary to do lots of research but it is important to think deeply about what you know about the people who will buy your products and services. Who are they? How old are they? How wealthy are they? Where do they live? What do they like and dislike? Where and how to they currently buy similar services and products to those you will be providing?

If you have worked through the above questions and based your marketing strategy and sales forecasts on what you discovered, your plan will be stronger. If you also devise mechanisms for monitoring performance, based on the knowledge and assumptions behind your forecasts, you will have a much greater chance of improving your sales forecasts and marketing strategies, as your business develops.