Launching a new business is undoubtedly a daunting task. It becomes an even more intimidating concept when you realize that 50% of new businesses fail in the first few years, and only 25% make it past the 15-year mark. While it’s easy to blame things like economic factors and market trends, most businesses fail to succeed because of poor planning. To help you get through the process of taking an idea and turning it into a business, you need to be prepared to put in some major work before making your first pitch.

Know Your Market

A great idea isn’t that great if you’re the only person who would be interested in it. While virtually every business caters to a niche, your business won’t succeed if it only appeals to such a tiny niche that you can’t cover expenses. Spend a considerable amount of time researching the field that your idea fits into and see what companies have come before you. If they’ve succeeded, see what ideas you can adopt and modify for your startup. If they’ve failed, figure out why. Know the demographics, who you’re targeting, and make sure this is a viable business concept.

Plan Your Finances

If you find that there’s enough of a market to take your idea from concept to business, the next step is to develop your financial forecast. Know what you’re going to do with every dollar that comes into your firm. Not only will having a well-written financial forecast help you reach the stage of securing an investment, but it will also help you stay on the straight-and-narrow concerning your finances.

Position Your Products

If you’ve established that there is a market and know what you’re going to do with your business finances, your next step is to begin positioning your product. With today’s trend of instant gratification and in-your-face advertising, potential customers have a short attention span. It’s your responsibility to get your product in front of them and quickly explain why they need to spend their money with your company. Positioning your product is merely describing the benefits of your business to your potential customers. Avoid getting too technical; simply show them why they should support you and your business idea. Explain the necessity of your product or service, focusing on its importance in today’s world. If your heart is in it, potential stakeholders will surely take notice!