The first step in exploring your idea, learning about its opportunities and challenges, is to write it down. The business model canvas is a simple exercise to help identify meaningful key elements of your business.
Create a Business Model Canvas
There are many online tools to aid you in developing your business model canvas, but simply writing down the following details is good enough.
- Key Partners
- Key Activities
- Key Resources
- Value Proposition
- Customer Relationships
- Customer Segments
- Cost Structure
- Revenue Stream
There is no textbook way to start or run a company. There are, however, a mountain of free educational sources and inexpensive books that can help you expedite turning your idea into a real company.
The next homework assignment for prospective TVC Members is a SWOT analysis. Self awareness is key to success. Writing down you concept’s known advantages and disadvantages, along with potential threats in the market, will help you identify problems and adjust your plan accordingly.
If you want to make your model pretty, you can use a free tool called Canvanizer. There is an upgrade option, but the free version is useful.
Alexander Cowen’s blog post on Business Model Canvas offers an excellent explanation of the model and how to simply create one for your business concept.
Create a SWOT Analysis
Please complete the Business Model Canvas and SWOT before returning to TVC for additional support. The next homework assignment may take a few days, perhaps even weeks. Creating a powerful pitch is essential. However, we will work to help you with this step. It is our first project together to help you with your new business.
Become familiar with pitch decks if you are not already. And, if you have one completed, please bring it in. A rough draft, or first revision of a pitch deck will help us tremendously. If you can muster a deck, please bring one one. If not, let’s work together to see where your business idea is heading.
Why Pitch Deck
To pitch is to build. Without a clear, concise pitch you can not win capital investments. But, a pitch deck goes fat beyond a capital raise. A good pitch deck is a basis for explaining your idea to prospective employees, partners, coaches, and ultimately it helps you as a founder crystalize your idea in simple terms that you and others can understand.
As an example, these seven slides help explain why creating a pitch deck is so important.
There are great online tutorials on developing pitch decks. A good first step is to look at successful decks to get an idea of what moves investors to invest.
- Visit Slidebean to see examples of successful pitch decks
- Listen to or read Oren Klaff’s book Pitch Anything