Manda James 4m 547
The views of this article are the perspective of the author and may not be reflective of Confessions of the Professions.
Whether you are just starting out or you need to take your business in a new direction—which can sometimes feel like you are starting from scratch—your business needs an operating model that will help you be successful. It seems pretty basic to say that businesses’ operation models need to aim at wanting to be successful, but planning out a business model that will get you there is no easy feat.
There is a lot to consider and a lot you must know and be realistic about when it comes to your business, and if you are not honest with yourself when drafting your business model than you might as well pack it in now because you will never be successful if you cannot set attainable goals. Here is how you can create or reinvent your business model.
The Key Questions You Must Ask Yourself
Before drafting up any business model there are some questions you must ask yourself in order to answer the bigger question of how your business is going to make money, according to For Dummies. Ask yourself:
- Who is your target customer?
- What is the problem or challenge of your target customer that you solve?
- What value(s) do you deliver?
- How will you reach customers?
- How will you turn leads into customers?
- How will you keep them as customers?
- What makes your offerings different, what defines them?
- How will you create profits?
- What will your cost structure be?
- What will your profit margin be?
This is a good starting point to figuring out what you still need for your business to succeed. If you can’t answer the basic questions, you’ll need to get back to the drawing board and reconsider what you are trying to accomplish with your company.
Know Your Customer
The best thing you can do for yourself when creating your business model is know your target customer better than anyone else, says Inc Magazine. You need to know what your customers are looking for because the more you know; the more likely it is you can deliver on those wants and needs. You can be stealthy about the way you do your customer research as well, because you of course don’t want to tip off your competitors. One company wanted to gauge interest in a new product line well before launch without their competitors finding out about it, so they created a fake company and website and advertised it on various websites, including Facebook. They were able to get their targeted customer’s feedback without revealing who they were to their top competitors.
When it comes to your operating model, you do not want to skimp on the details. It doesn’t matter if you have been running a business for years or you are just starting out, a solid business plan is the scaffolding that will help you to build up your business. Without a structured plan in place, the rest of it cannot build up and flourish the way you want it to.
- License: Creative Commons image source
About the Author
By Manda James, a marketing major looking into new and interesting ways to get a larger response to social media efforts and the overall brand image of her father’s company.