Startup Business Plans

See, this guy’s already got two plans. Get cracking Jack.

If you work in a startup you know there’s never enough time to do wasteful tasks (read: corporate) like write a business plan. That is, until someone with a checkbook asks to see a copy.

Investors, banks, board members, sometimes even potential new hires often want proof that the company has a plan before they invest, loan money or leave another job.

That’s when writing the business plan becomes a top priority. Usually with an unrealistic deadline.

No worries. We’ll get you through it. The startup way: quickly, directly and with no corporate buzzwords, useless marketing jargon or needless fluff.

Just the facts you need so you can get back to what you really want to be doing…changing the world.

All the resources you need to get your plan written and get on your way are below. From a 70-page ebook for those who need more hand holding, to a free downloadable template for those who just need a starting point.

Figure out below how much help you need, and go grab it. And good luck.

For Startup Business Plan Virgins (the $9.99 ebook)

This your first time writing a business plan? The Startup Business Plan 70-page ebook builds on the free templates and videos below with a very detailed step by step guide. It includes Get to The Point, a 10 point questionnaire to get you (or your founder) on the right track before you start, and six pre-work sections to help you gather the necessary information so you can focus on strategy.

This quick read will help you focus your efforts, solidify your brand (or message/product strategy/product strategy), discover new opportunities for the company, and determine how to best crush your competitors.

Writing a business plan is a big task, if you don’t want to go it alone, this is your option.  Find out more.

For the Seasoned Business Plan Writer (free template)

You got it covered, but you need to maximize your time. Use this free Business Plan Outline. It’s formatted already so all you need to do is start typing.

For the Clueless, But Not Hopeless (video refresher tutorials)

Read your share of business plans, but never had to write one? Or, you’ve written plenty of plans, but never a business plan for a startup? No worries, scroll down to the free startup business plan tutorials. Each video covers a section of the plan in 10 minutes or less. It’s the perfect refresher for you.

How to Write a Startup Business Plan Video Tutorials

Each video focuses on different section of the plan and uses a fictional company run by Tom & Jerry (yes, THAT Tom & Jerry) as example. If you need a reminder of what to focus in on, start with these videos.

Before You Start

I recommend you start with this Before you Start video. (Hence the clever title.) It has some useful tips for, well, for before you start.

How to Write a Business Plan for Startups – Business Description video tutorial


Don’t worry, you don’t need a sunglass wearing horse to write your business plan. Any old pony will do.

How to Write a Business Plan for Startups – Product or Service Description video tutorial


Yes, that says bacon. Don’t all business plan tutorials talk about bacon? They should.

How to Write a Business Plan for Startups – Marketing Strategy video Tutorial


There’s a lot of confusion around what goes into this section. Don’t make the common mistake of using this section to over compensate for a lack of information in other sections.

How to Write a Business Plan for Startups – Finance & Operations Section video tutorial


Yup. I’m beating a dead horse in this tutorial. My apologies to PETA, but some points just need to be made. And made again.

How to Write a Business Plan for Startups – Executive Summary video tutorial


The final, and easiest section of your plan. Congratulations! You’re done.

For the Actually, Truly Hopeless (hire me)

Although I write a lot of plans for my startup clients, I always try to talk them into doing it themselves. No matter how well you know your business, the process of writing a plan you will teach you more. I guarantee it. So, if you can; do it yourself. but if you really, really can’t; hire me.

Or, if you’ve just got a quick questions…drop it in the comments. Maybe I (or another startup reader) can answer it for you!

7 Comments

  • Fail to plan…Plan to fail. Business Planning is critical to the sustained success of your business. Whatever the size, level, dynamics and needs of your business,it is important to provides strategic business plan methods and formats which work! Simple. Effective. Sound.

  • Stephen

    Reply Reply April 19, 2012

    Hello
    Let me start by saying Very well done. Now do you where I can get some free or very low cost graphs that I can make to put in my Business Plan.
    Thanks and Best Regards Stephen

    • Kathy Ver Eecke

      Reply Reply April 19, 2012

      Hi Stephen –
      Honestly, I haven’t seen many business plans that incorporate graphics outside of charts, graphs, product pics or maybe marketing material. It really should be all about the info and the numbers and not really about the flash. That said, if you really want to add some visuals, you might try Shutterstock. I use them a lot (for non business plan stuff) the cost per individual pic is affordable. Or try Flickr.com for free pics, but be sure you are looking at the pictures in their Creative Commons section so you don’t take anything that isn’t copyright free.

      Good luck with your plan.
      Kathy

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