Disclaimer: This is not financial advice and should not be construed as such. If you require personalized financial advice, please seek the services of a relevant professional.
You get an idea. You start researching, idealizing and fantasizing, eager to realize the potential of your plan. Unfortunately, rarely do people get to the later stages. For more experienced business people, with more capital, resources, contacts, and knowledge, the story is different. Here are some tips to streamline the process and level the playing field between you, and serial entrepreneurs.
1) Write a Business Plan
This will provide you the opportunity to organize your thoughts, and fill in any gaps in your research and knowledge. As you formulate your business plan, take caution to making claims you can’t back up (when asked by a potential investor or due diligence professional).
What is the ideal length? As long as needed, to accurately and thoroughly lay out the business. It depends on the sector/business-type. Of course, don’t make it overly long and convoluted if the idea is relatively simple. Don’t feel the need to make it lengthy for the sake of being long. Word count isn’t impressive, the content is. If its high quality + high word count? Thats impressive.
Continuing on the topic of length, most investors won’t read a 200 page proposal. Especially if the funds you’re seeking are small. On the other hand, if you need $20,000,000…
2) Be consistent
This one is pretty obvious, yet most don’t follow through. Allocate a certain amount of time per week… indefinitely. If you are working full time with another job, 20 hours a week plus or minus however much, depending on your situation.
3) Get into contact with VC investors, high net worth individuals, etc.
You will probably be able to convince an investor if you know your stuff, and show it. Practice communicating key metrics and logic. Remember when you got excited in the beginning, for this “untapped opportunity”? Share that with them. It will require more convincing than it took you, in part, as they have to buy into the idea, and you.
Overall, be consistent, driven, and stay on course. Do your research and communicate effectively. Then, you’ll be on your way to seeing your business idea fulfilled.