What is in your home watch business plan? What…you didn’t think that you needed a business plan? Well, considering you are launching a home-based business out of nothing, you do need to have some sort of idea as to what your main goals are as you create your new home watch business. That means you will need a business plan of some kind. No, it doesn’t have to be several pages in length, but something on paper will be a good start.
To give you an edge as an entrepreneur, I have put together what I would use to start a new business from scratch here for you to follow. I call it a blueprint for success and suggest you adopt it as the foundation of your home watch business plan. It’s not complicated, either. But it does contain some very important elements that will keep you from making any serious mistakes along the way as you build your new business.
Step 1 – The Brand
This is essentially what will be connected to your home watch service as your identity. It will be what customers, suppliers, and all others will know you and your business by. When you strip it down to the basics, your brand can be developed quite quickly and easily. It can come from your business name, as an example. Because of this, you will want to put more energy into choosing a great business name as opposed to just an so-so business name. But picking a business name can be a little tricky.
I have a few simple suggestions that will make this part a lot easier on you. First, keep your business name easy to say, spell and understand. Second, choose a business name that is relevant to the purpose of your business. That is to say, if you are launching a home watch business, your business name should indicate what type of business you have. Third, if you can, try to personalize your business name with the name of where it is based, your first name or some other element that gives your business name a friendly and welcoming touch to it.
Step 2 – The Services
Your home watch business plan will be pretty empty if you don’t include a listing of your services and proposed rates for each. If you think of your business like it was a restaurant, your customers will be looking for information on the services you provide. If you create a list that is in a way like a restaurant menu, you’ll understand what I mean here. For each service you offer, you should have a price. This makes it easy for clients to look over what you do and decide what services they will hire you for based on your rates.
I’m going to make this even easier for you. When you list your services, focus primarily on the main items. For example, a regular check of the interior and exterior of the premises.Then I would suggest you include some add-on services. Examples could be collecting mail, taking out the garbage, watering outdoor plants. Special services could include storm watch property checks. What you want to do is create a menu of services that will interest your potential clients with the types of things they would expect from a home watch business.
Step 3 – The Rates
I’ve just mentioned it but only briefly as your rates should be discussed separately from your services although both will appear together as part of your home watch business plan. One of the biggest hurdles for some new business owners is the rates to charge customers. There is a fine line where you don’t want to have the highest rates and scare off customers and the lowest rates don’t always cover your costs.
The best thing to do is search for competitors – even if they are one or two states away from you – and see what they charge. This will give you a guideline to work with. Your local economy and the demographics of your population base will help you to fine-tune that rate for your home watch business plan.
Another thing about your rates. When you start your home watch business you should have a fairly good idea of what your regular monthly costs are going to be. Your rates have to cover those and still give you a decent profit that you can live off. But you have to spend a great deal of time researching what kinds of rates your market can bear.
Step 4 – The Attitude
The final piece of the puzzle that will set your business apart from all others is how you conduct business. While you should be professional and focused, the personal connections you will make with your clients will get you far beyond any business plan can project. In a world where communication is largely impersonal in the format of texts or voice mail, you can stand out with your customer base by sticking to old school practices because they rarely fail.
By keeping in mind that each of your customers can unlock more business for you through referrals and reviews, you will want to treat each of them as if they were the only customers you have had. That’s because each customer is far more than just another invoice number or paycheck. When you keep in mind that you are dealing with people who can easily become part of your circle of friends, your attitude will shift. It may also make the difference between being successful and not being successful.
Every business that has ever been established typically did so with a business plan of some kind. With a home watch business plan you can build on something that gives you a solid foundation. Plus, as your business plan is a living document, you can make changes to address changes in your local economy or demographics. Without some kind of guide to follow, your business will be tougher to establish and build. A business plan gives you the building blocks that create the home-based business you are trying to launch. Hopefully, my suggestions will become useful when you begin putting together your home watch business plan. You’ll find a sample business plan in our complete guide: How To Start a Profitable Home Watch Business.