Palo Alto Software is a software company in the Bay Area with over 100 employees. They have been around for over 20 years and are well-known for their customer service. In this blog post, we’ll cover some of the top tips from Palo Alto’s customers on how to plan effectively.
The palo alto business plan pro software free download is a software that helps businesses create, manage and track their plans.
Customers of Palo Alto Software were recently polled on their business planning efforts and requirements. While some of the results were unsurprising, others provide valuable lessons for aspiring entrepreneurs as well as those looking to go back to basics. The following article identifies three areas of planning that our respondents found difficult, as well as suggestions and resources to help you handle them effectively.
Research Many business owners overlook the need of researching their industry, competitors, and practical problems such as pricing suppliers and estimating channel markups. The majority of our survey respondents found doing the necessary research to create the business plan to be difficult, with 52 percent of the overall sample rating it as “very” or “very” difficult. You need this information to establish realistic objectives and manage your cash flow, in addition to any information prospective investors or partners want to see in a business plan.
Even for those who are well-versed in their own company, the planning process may compel you to consider certain important problems about which you had previously just made assumptions. Getting the research required was “extremely challenging” for 27% of respondents who claimed they received funding for their company as a consequence of the planning phase. Given that these entrepreneurs were already in business – they were looking for funding for established companies – this is a major issue.
Resources: On bplans, we provide a variety of resources to assist you in your business study, ranging from industry studies to the proper questions to ask when purchasing a business to legal advice on incorporating your company. It doesn’t have to be difficult or costly to do research, but it will take time, so get started immediately.
Marketing Strategy According to the entrepreneurs we polled, developing a marketing strategy for their company was also time consuming. Creating a marketing strategy was rated as “very” or “extremely” difficult by 44 percent of individuals intending to start a company (start-ups). Surprisingly, 49% of those creating a strategy for a company they already owned said the marketing planning process was “very” or “very” difficult.
What is it about marketing that makes it so difficult? And why does it get more difficult after you’ve established a business?
“The average little company in America is founded by someone who understands how to do something,” remarked our buddy John Jantsch, author of Duct Tape Marketing. Rarely does this expertise include the ability to sell a company that accomplishes those things.” Fortunately, he also provides a straightforward definition of marketing that may help bridge the gap: “Marketing is the process of gaining knowledge, like, and trust from individuals who have a particular need or issue.” Marketing may be that simple if you know some basic, low-cost, and successful methods to put your concept into action.
Resources You will discover lots of FREE marketing tools online at Mplans.com, including ROI calculators, marketing planning how-to articles, and more, in addition to an unique edition of Marketing Plan Pro powered by Duct Tape Marketing, John Jantsch’s award-winning handbook for small-business marketing. As Jantsch points out, every small-company owner is in the marketing business, so why not do it on purpose?
Financials As one would imagine, putting together the financial aspects of a company strategy was difficult. Only 16 individuals (or 9% of all respondents) said predicting their financials was “not at all difficult,” and they were mainly business-planning consultants or teachers.
If you’re reading this, you’re probably dealing with financial projections now, or will be shortly. The financials may be intimidating for entrepreneurs who consider themselves “idea people” or “hands-on employees,” rather than accountants. When you take a step back, numbers and graphs are just concrete ways of measuring what you’re doing, how much effort goes into the business, and what you (and your employees or investors) get out of it – as well as how your business will weather any unforeseen problems that arise (yes, we’re talking cash flow).
This is crucial information that should be led by your company goals rather than the weekly bargain. Every dollar spent on one item is a dollar that might have been spent on something else. That’s how strategy works. That’s what it means to concentrate. That’s your prerogative. You don’t want to know where it’s heading, do you?
Resources The entire text of Tim Berry’s Hurdle: the Book on Company Planning is available online for a comprehensive examination of the financial components of a business plan. Bplans has information on everything from calculating startup expenses to securing funding, as well as a free gallery of full example business plans. Check out our plain-English business vocabulary if you’re just getting started with your company’s finances. The survey was conducted as follows:
The Professional Education Institute performed the study mentioned in this article online in September of 2008. Users of Palo Alto Software, Inc. products made up 670 percent of the sample. The results of the survey are kept private.
|Was this post informative and interesting to you? During Global Entrepreneurship Week, we’ll be adding additional articles, advice, blogs, and special incentives to help you get your company down to basics.|
Palo Alto Software is a software company that offers planning tools for business. The business plan pro palo alto software is one of their products. This article will provide the reader with some tips on how to use this tool effectively.
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