The single most important success factor in almost all businesses, is often the most OVERLOOKED. I know that I'm guilty of it, and I sometimes I still am. The fact is that having a plan / outline / time line drawn out before venturing out and getting your feet wet could make the difference between success and failure of a new business, no matter how great the idea is.
Think about it, would you go into the battlefield with a gun and some ammo just shooting anything and hoping to get lucky? Or would you strategically scope your enemies out, locate all possible entry and escape routes, monitor guard patrol courses, and locate weak points so that you could exploit them?
Although planning a business is not as extreme as going into a war zone, they're both based under the same principle and concept of having a plan. It determines success or failure. I believe the reason that many new entrepreneurs who do not have a plan prior to starting a campaign is because they're unsure about how to start one. Frankly about 90% of those who do not know how to start one, do not even bother to try. The truth is that planning requires patience and motivation. It may or may not be an overnight thing, use your time wisely and do not rush yourself. Do not half-ass it! A well thought out precision plan WILL MAKE A DIFFERENCE. Ask yourself, "How badly do I want this to happen?", And "What if this plan fails or does not work? Do I have a backup plan?"
Here is a simple outline to follow to write your business plan out:
* What is / are the product (s) I'll be selling or reselling? Who is my target audience for my products? (Include all details: male / female, age, location, communities, sports, events, etc)
* If I'm creating my product, how will I be handling the creation of my products? Will I build it myself? Will I outsource the work? etc
* What makes my product different and stand out oppose to the other similar products out there?
* How will I be handling purchase and delivery options for my products? Digital delivery, offline / online store, an 800 number, drop-shipping?
* What's the cheapest and best way to advertise my product (s)? A plethora of ideas swarm here: Word of mouth, PPC, SEO, Article Marketing, E-mail marketing, Buying advertising space, magazine advertising, blogging, etc
* Will I be selling my products individually or create a discounted price for purchase bundles?
* Will I have employees? Will I be joint venturing?
The above is just a simple planning outline that everyone should be able to follow that should help you on your business venture. Plan before you begin, not the other way around. As I mentioned earlier, it can determine the success and failure of a new business.