I’m a big believer in business plans – not the textbook thing, the simple working, changing, living, breathing thing. Every business should use one (note I said use not have.)
There are lots of websites, software programs and books out there that can help you create a business plan. The funny thing is that while most of these sources tell you that you should have a banker, accountant and lawyer review your plan – few suggest working with a marketer to do so.
Please, find a marketing professional you can trust and make sure they participate in the creation of your business plan, because no matter what your projections say – you won’t get far unless the most significant portion of your business plan, the marketing plan, is based in reality.
I’m really tired of the worn out expression that claims 90% of small business fail in the first 5 years because it’s just not true – but 90% of all business fail to meet or exceed the vision the owner of those businesses created, in whatever form of business planning they participated in, because few understand that marketing is the most important part of the plan.