In case you’re wondering (and I’m sure I’ll still here from some of my VA readers) that’s not a typo in the title – I’m trying to create a new word by running guess and projection together to illustrate a point that alludes most of the business owners I’ve worked with over the years.
I believe that there is real power in revenue projections for the small business, even if you feel like all you are doing is guessing. But, no one in ten business owners I talk to takes the time to project the future. Instead they go out there and see what happens week to week and then add it up at tax time.
Projections, particularly aggressive ones, are like goals. If you set a goal, even if you don’t really have a clear idea of how you are going to reach it, you often start doing things that make the seed of the idea come about. It’s just the way the universe works. (It’s not hoping or praying, it’s intention and attention)
So, use this to your advantage and create an annual revenue plan right now. Don’t look at this as a financial statement requirement (although banks love them when they loan money) start to think of this as marketing goal setting and give your goal the focus it deserves by also tracking how you are doing on a weekly or monthly basis. Big companies use something called a Gap analysis to measure the gap between all kinds of things – budgets, revenues, brand awareness. You can do the same thing with your revenue projections. Our goal – our reality this month = the gap (or the bridge). This is a simple way to turn this often intimidating set of tools into a game.
I could give you post after post about all the wonderful things you should have in a marketing plan, but if you don’t first have some “where am I trying to get to” goals for sales, your plan won’t drive you very far.