entrepreneurs often fail to proceed to the implementation stage after having
identified different opportunities that are lurked up in agribusiness. It is not just identifying an opportunity or developing
an idea/concept that matters, it is being able to convert those spotted
opportunities or conceived ideas into reality (products, services, etc.) that matter
and that’s what guarantees success in any business enterprise. It is not
enough just having an idea and just keeping it in your head or probably doing
the planning in your mind, one needs the help of someone that has a track
record in business planning and execution. As a young entrepreneur, you need
the help of some high achievers in the business you are planning to venture
into for guidance and mentoring towards avoiding mistakes that could endanger
your proposed business. Notwithstanding, you still need to take some reasonable
level of risks because “Nothing Ventured, Nothing
Gained”. Similar to the process of identifying market opportunities,
also their setting in place may involve the explicit use of tools that ensure
quality work in this domain:
1. SWOT Analysis
SWOT analysis evaluates the overall Strengths,
Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats of a business. Strengths and
weaknesses are about where the business is now compared with its competitors,
while, opportunities and threats are about where the business is going. This
means opportunities are attractive areas for action where the business is
likely to have some advantages or make special contributions. Threats are
critical trends or specific disturbances in the environment that could lead to
stagnation, decline or demise of the business or a part of it. The SWOT analysis allows identification and visualization of
market opportunities and gaps, which should be considered when marketing
activities are planned.
2. Business Plan
business plan presents all aspects of a new business in a simple, comprehensive
way. In this sense, it involves much of the
information obtained and assessed through the different tools presented up
until now: marketing concept development, rapid market appraisal, focus group
research and SWOT analysis. When put onto paper, a
business plan is a strategic document that describes all aspects of the
development of a market opportunity:
It states a set
of business goals and the plan how to reach them.
defines all relevant business activities and how they relate to each other.
responsibilities among actors directly and indirectly involved in the business.
examples of how to make a business profitable by planning costs, income
creation and marketing for a business.
projections of how different scenarios might influence expected profitability.
It shows the
steps necessary to implement operations and define the roles partners should
Purposes of Business Plan
It serves as a
planning and decision-making tool, providing a clear concept and proof to a
business before starting it.
It serves to
persuade new actors to get involved, particularly new financial partners.
It serves to
better manage unexpected forces because you have given them consideration
during a well thought-out plan.
in all, when planning a new venture, such as an organic business, or when an
existing business is to assume major change, business planning is essential. You
may visit the following link to learn how to write a well-structured and catchy
Business Plan: http://kasfarintheagropreneur.blogspot.com/2013/11/write-catchy-business-plan-for-your.html
3. Marketing Plan
market opportunities that involve important sales and promotion activities to
be successful, a special marketing plan will be helpful to ensure that these activities
are well-defined, from a strategic and operational point of view. In this sense,
a marketing plan is a detailed document that
specifies the planned interventions in the area of marketing, being consistent
with the ideas presented in the business plan.
The Marketing Plan has basically
1. In a first part, the marketing plan contains detailed
information about the market situation and outlines concrete marketing
activities to achieve concretely defined objectives mentioned in the document.
2. In the second part, it contains a detailed
overview of the planned marketing activities relating them to resources
required for their implementation, the schedule of implementation and persons
responsible for each planned action. Since marketing objectives must be
evaluated (re-assessed) and regularly adapted, also the marketing plan must be revised and updated from time to time. Changes
often occur when outside factors, or things out of our control such as a flood
or other disaster takes a business in a new direction or when marketing objectives
have not been achieved within a defined time frame.
Structure of the
Part I Strategic
Information Related to a Specific Market Opportunity
Type of customers: Who are buyers of the products; consumers, traders,
wholesalers, retailers? Are they local, national or export-oriented? What are their requirements (e.g. in terms of
quality and quantities)?
Competitors: Who else if offering similar products like you are
offering? What are their strengths and weaknesses? Which of their weaknesses
can we turn into our strengths?
Suppliers: Who will supply us with the materials we need? Do
they have the right quality and quantity we need?
stakeholder and key actors in the chain - Who are the other groups or persons
that have an interest in our business, for example, NGOs that may support us? Support
the implementation of this plan?
Human resources: Do we have the people to manage and support the
implementation of this plan?
Financial resources: Where shall we get the money we need for our
business? Is it bank loans, loans from the government with a reduced interest
rate, money from private investors or any other funders?
Raw materials: Can we produce all the raw materials we need? How
can we increase the amount of raw materials? Who else can supply us in case we need
more raw materials?
Operation Information Related to a Specific Market Opportunity
Target markets: number and location of places that are targeted
Sales target: sale of amount x of product y during period z?
Product specifications: definition of exact products that are to be sold,
in what form and with what services?
what is exactly planned in terms of activities related to promotion, and when?
Distribution: how will the logistics be defined and managed? Who
is responsible for what?
Pricing: what are the prices that consumers and the
different market chain actors obtain, ensuring that everyone is benefiting?
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