Please note: the sound on this recording is a little low, you may wish to listen through headphones.
First on the list is the Business Concept Statement.
It is a single sentence that encapsulates your business proposition – or one sentence description. It can be used as the opening line of many of the documents you may need to fill in for administration purposes – for applying for a business license for instance – or in networking situations when you are explaining what your business does to others. It’s a quick, simple introduction to your business that gets straight to the point. It’s not marketing copy.
In terms of the Business Plan, it may well be its very first sentence – the way you introduce your business to the reader.
A complete Business Concept Statement is generally made up of facts about your business:
- The name of your business if you already have one.
- What it sells
- Where it is sold
- And to whom it is sold
- For the purposes of a business plan which is to be used for financing requests, it should also state whether it is a new business or an existing one and how much you are looking for to support the business.
Here are some examples:
- “My new business provides specialized restoration services for classic cars in Northern Alberta”.
- “I am purchasing an existing health food store which supplies customers in Red Deer, Alberta”.
- “Quick Clean is a new commercial cleaning service in Devon, Alberta.
- “A+ Concrete was established in 2018 and services Edmonton, AB. We are now expanding to reach towns and cities further East”.
To formulate your Business Concept Statement, start off by just getting the words down in the most simple language possible (just like the examples above).
Note that in each of these examples it is stated whether the business is new or existing, and also where it will operate. This is good because crucial information about your business idea is being communicated immediately and succinctly.
If you feel it necessary, you can then expand slightly on that initial statement by adding a few more details about the product or service.
For example, if we expanded on the example number 2, it may end up looking like this:
I wish to purchase an existing health food store which supplies nutritional supplements and fresh organic produce to customers in Edmonton, Alberta. As part of this purchase, I will also be providing a mobile service to residents and restaurants in the West End of the city, delivering locally grown, in season vegetables, organically raised meats and dairy products. To support my purchase I am looking for a loan of $50,000.
It’s still brief but adds a little more detail which will really help with your reader’s understanding.
One final point on the Business Concept Statement, if you are writing a plan for an investor, loan or grant request, it is advisable to make your very next sentence one that states how much you are looking to borrow to make your business a reality. By doing so, you have stated the core of your request in a simple, up front way, so that they can immediately gage whether or not your request is something they can help you with.
By having these two things up front, they don’t have to search through the document, which will save them time and make sure your Plan gets in front of the right person immediately.
Finally, we’re going to introduce another element that it may be useful to consider when composing your Business Concept Statement – your uniqueness.
Being aware of what makes you in a unique position to make a success of your business is something to think about as early as possible in the business planning process.
Knowing what qualities or experiences you are bringing to this business, over an above what others can bring, is useful. Not only should it give you a little more confidence within yourself, but also when pitching the business to others, from potential investors to potential customers.
In terms of your Business Plan, you could touch on it within the Business Concept Statement, or expound upon it in more detail later in the document, depending on how significant you believe that unique element to be or how much impact you feel it will have on your business success.
Here are some examples of unique elements you may wish to highlight:
Impeccable experience and reputation within your industry and market segment. Are you a leader in your industry?
- Having business development or administration skillsets. Past business experience you can bring to bear on your new venture.
- Bringing a service or product to a brand new area ie being “the first” to offer it. First in the market by a product or service that has been proven elsewhere.
- Inventing a product or service. Be sure you can prove your audience and that you have fully consumer tested first, however. Also note, generally, you must be out of the Research and Development phase to obtain funding.
- Bringing a business into the market that has particular benefit to underserved communities, individuals or cultures. In Canada, this would include First Nations and Meti communities, women, youth, disabled people, and diversity groups of all kinds.
- Bringing to market a business that specializes in a niche audience. Ensure that the niche market is big enough to support a profitable business, not a hobby.
- Innovation of all kinds. Cheaper, faster, better materials, unusual delivery methods, adaption between industries, etc.
In the next video, we are going to take a quick look at Goal Setting for your business. See you then.