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One of the biggest mistakes entrepreneurs make in the early stages is to solve a problem nobody has.
This is a bite-sized description of your business that explains your unique approach AND leaves the reader’s mouth watering.
Here’s an example from a winner of Geek Wire’s 2012 one-sentence pitch competition: The rest of your executive summary should briefly explain your company’s story and introduce your specific products/services/locations.
If your city doesn’t have a good pizza shop, this can be just as much of a “problem” – at least, in the context of a business plan.
For evidence, cite specific conversations you’ve had with residents that expresses their interest for the type of product or service you’re providing.
Explain your accomplishments so far, and outline what you hope to achieve in the near future. For example, framing your business as a “More than 40% of the United States is rangeland used for livestock, and the top concern of the ranchers who tend to them is ensuring an adequate supply of water…
Every day, the rancher checks the water levels of his or her 20 to 30 water tanks.”So begins the business plan of Barn Owl Systems, a finalist in the 2016 Wharton Business Plan Competition.
Then, illustrate the process with a simple graphic like the one above.
Entrepreneur Patrick Fitz Gerald explains this in more detail, and provides more examples, in this video lecture.
If you’re selling a physical product, you can take a different approach and simply display your product with arrows pointing to all the unique features.
Other ideas include a “before/after snapshot,” which illustrates how consumers went about a problem before and after the introduction of your product.