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Steps before you start writing

There are a few steps you need to cover before you start to write a business description. This is a chance to clearly state what’s going to set your company apart from others, and you can make the most of it with preparation:

1. Research the industry and the competition

An effective business description starts with research into the industry you are entering and the top competitors in that market. Make use of credible sources such as news outlets, trade magazines and published studies, or speak with industry veterans.

You can also get valuable insights by interviewing or surveying your target market and by checking out existing business descriptions from companies similar to the one you plan to create.

2. Identify high-performing keywords

While the focus here is on writing a business plan for potential investors and partners, you may want to adapt your business description for use in other places. For instance, you might decide to put it online to raise awareness of your new venture. To ensure your description is visible on the internet, you’ll need to use keywords that perform well on Google and other search engines. Building in these keywords from the outset will make it easier to edit this content for other uses. Google keywords are a particularly good starting place for search engine optimization (SEO).

3. Practice writing in your brand voice

A business description does more than just introduce your company. It also introduces your brand identity and shows how you want to be seen. A crisp and authoritative brand voice will identify your brand as formal and serious, while a friendly and informal tone can establish you as an approachable and family-friendly operation.

Your brand identity is, in itself, a way of communicating what you value most about your business idea. It sets the tone for what others can expect from you.

Components of an effective business description

Every business plan and description is specific to the industry and the type of company you are building. You can create an effective business description by including these basic components:

1. Provide your business’s basic information

Include your company’s basic information: its name, what it does, the value it offers, its location and its origin story. These are the fundamentals any reader will need to understand your concept. Identify your specific industry—possibilities might include wholesale or retail, project development, manufacturing, service, finance or hospitality—to provide context. Be as specific as you can: a proposed hobby shop, for instance, will almost certainly fit into a smaller category such as outdoor hobbies, fitness, gaming or personal computing.

2. Describe your target market

Detail your target audience, including their age range, geographical location, values and attitudes, relationship status, income level and spending habits. Explain how you plan to connect with them and make sure they will be receptive to your brand and message.

3. Craft a problem statement

Detail your products and services. Specify a common problem that your target audience faces, how your expertise and resources will address it and how the resulting benefits will set your brand apart from the competition.

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