The need for a Mobile App
Any Business Plan should begin by addressing the need for a particular product. Accordingly, an effective business plan for a Mobile Application must justify its need in the current market scenario. Mobile Applications have become a necessity owing to their ease of access and use. As the mobile industry grows in size, mobility solutions are increasingly sought after. The first step to a successful business model is defining the problem. The consumer market has a number of problems that seek mobility solutions and thus, the definition of the problem becomes important. Defining the problem requires an intensive market research. It involves identifying the target group that is aggrieved by the problem and the existing solutions.
The next major step involves explaining how your app provides a solution to the perceived problem. The solution should explain how it seeks to address the customer problems. Additionally, it should highlight what it is bringing to the market that was previously missing. Before delving deeper into the features, the solution must elucidate the changes it is likely to bring about. Therefore, a successful business plan must convince the customers and investors about the likelihood of the viability of their solution.
The final step to establish the need for your app is to incorporate a SWOT analysis of all the existing competitor solutions. This involves identifying the already present mobile applications that are addressing the same or similar problem. This should be complemented by highlighting the advances your mobile application has over the existing solutions. Additionally, weaknesses should be taken into account for improvement.
Startup Business Plan
Defining the Goals
A Startup Business Plan, in its initial stage, should define the short term as well as the long-term goals. Short term goals generally include the production of a mobile application that addresses customer problems. Whereas, the long-term goal may center around the generation of a stable customer base and business expansion. Irrespective of the time frame, it is important to incorporate company goals in the business plan to ensure their congruence with investors and customers.
It is important to define the target audience. This includes not only identifying the strata of customers that the mobile application is targeting. It also involves researching about the problems that the application is likely to provide a solution for. Concrete data about the target audience needs and viable solutions for them are likely to ensure idea validation for the mobile application. Finally, an application that seems to be feasible for the customers will entail success.
Classifying the Buyer Persona involves categorization of the potential customers to identify their unique attributes. This includes collecting data about their personal as well as professional lives. Buyer Persona becomes important to understand what segments of the population should be targeted and through what means. Finally, a detailed Buyer Persona can assist in the conception of successful branding and marketing strategies.
Unique Selling Proposition
USP or Unique Selling Proposition becomes important when users have to make a choice between your app and the other competing ones. USP elucidates how your app is different from all other working around similar ideas. A strong USP should convince the customers about the benefits of your mobile application by addressing their needs better than the others.
A financial plan is a key component of a strong business plan. It helps the investor in understanding the funding requirements along with its projected use. To begin with, a financial plan must state the investment cost, listing the various recurring and one-time production costs. Additionally, a separate budget to incorporate Marketing cost should be present. Marketing costs correspond to the advertising and promotional expenditure to gain App popularity. Finally, the financial plan must end with a proposal to seek investment and funding. It should explicitly state the amount required and the proposed equity status of the investor. Furthermore, the investment proposal may state the number of funding rounds expected and the duration of each.
Marketing and Communication Channels
Marketing and communication channels refer to the means through which a Startup seeks to promote their application, pre and post-launch. Based on the target audience, startups use different channels to broadcast their marketing messages. Sticking to one promotional channel is not enough in this era of cutthroat competition. Therefore, a mix of different marketing strategy is essential to ensure that no segment of the target audience remains untouched.
With social media becoming powerful, promotion through different social media platforms is likely to yield tangible results. Email marketing refers to reaching out to the target audience with informative content about your product. Additionally, one can use PR releases and stories in e- papers to gain greater popularity. Finally, paid advertising, through in-app promotions will definitely shoot up Mobile application popularity for startups.
A business plan for a mobile application should also incorporate a monetization strategy, i.e. how it will raise revenue. Since the marketplace is flooded with applications that provide similar solutions and features, a sustainable monetization strategy becomes vital to earning. Applications have a number of ways through which they can raise revenue and sustain their operations. Initially, applications followed the paid models which required customers to pay for app usage. However, with increasing options to choose from, customers are no longer willing to pay.
The newer models of revenue include in-app purchases and in-app advertisements. The former refers to providing a number virtual goods that can be purchased in the application to augment the user experience. The latter is suitable for bigger apps that can use their platform to promote other business in the form of ads to cut costs. Other models include a provision of some features for free and charging for some like Freemium. While others may rely on charging a monthly or annual subscription charges for service usage. Finally, sponsorship or incentivized is reaching its peak now. It involves partnering with another app which encourages users to access your application in exchange of in-app incentives.
In a nutshell, a number of monetization strategies are accessible to the startups. Mobile Applications need not restrict their revenue earning to one of them and may adopt multiple methods to generate high revenue.
Projected Profit and Loss Statement
A projected profit and loss statement refers to the potential profits and losses that the mobile application is likely to incur in a specific time frame. Ideally, a profit and loss statement should explicitly define the assets and the liabilities associated with the business plan for a clear vision. Therefore, this final stage of a business plan ensures better financial planning for the mobile application.
To sum it up, an effective business plan for mobile applications for is one of the most important components for a successful startup. It is instrumental for the purpose of investment as well as to guide the future of the business. It should incorporate all the vital channels that are the driving force behind the mobile application, including the financial plan as well as the communication and marketing strategy.