Thinking about opening a self help group? We tell you what you need to know to get started.
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Elements of a Self Help Group Business Plan
Your self help group's business plan should be tailored to your business's unique traits and goals. However, the most effective business plans do address specific sound business plan elements:
- Mission Statement – Your description of your self help group's reason for existing.
- Goals & Objectives – A list of mile markers on your self help group's road to success.
- Financial, Marketing & Action Plans – Specific plans that describe your business environment, demographic targets and quantitative estimates.
Assess the Competition
Well in advance of opening a self help group in your town, it's a smart move to see what the competition looks like. We've provided the link below to help you get a list of local competitors nearby. Simply enter your city, state and zip code to get a list of self help groups in your town.
If there's too much competition, it may be wise to consider starting the business in a less competitive marketplace.
Finding a Non-Competitive Business Mentor
As part of your due diligence on opening a self help group, the next step is to learn as much as you can from somebody who is already in the business. It's very unlikely that the local competition will talk to you. The last thing they want to do is help you to be a better competitor.
However, an entrepreneur who owns a self help group on the other side of the country will be much more likely to talk with you, after they realize you reside far away from them and won't be stealing their local customers. Indeed, many experienced entrepreneurs enjoy offering advice to startup entrepreneurs. In my experience, you may have to call ten business owners in order to find one who is willing to share his wisdom with you.
What's the process for finding a self help group owner on the other side of the country to talk to?
No problem! Just use the link below and try a random city/state or zipcode. Then start dialing for advice until you are successful.
Three Arguments for Buying a Self Help Group
It's almost always preferable to buy a self help group than to pursue a self help group startup.
You'll want to conduct a comprehensive due diligence process, but here are three arguments why you should think about buying instead of a startup.
- Initial Revenue. Startups struggle to bring in revenue right out of the gate while existing businesses usually have a steady stream of income.
- Established Operations & Processes. When you're shopping for a self help group, be sure to look for ones that have all of the necessary processes and systems to ensure seamless operations from your first day of ownership.
- Capital Acquisition. In general, it's easier to finance an existing business than it is to fund a startup. While a startup only exists on paper (initially), established businesses have the benefit of historical earnings statements and tangible assets.
Consider Buying a Franchise
Your chances for surviving in business are substantially improved when you opt to franchise in lieu of doing everything yourself.
Prior to making the decision to open a self help group, you would be wise to check out whether franchising might be worth investigating.
The link below gives you access to our franchise directory so you can see if there's a franchise opportunity for you. You might even find something that points you in a completely different direction.
These additional resources regarding starting a business may be of interest to you.
If you sell to self help groups, this isn't the right place for you. These resources are more appropriate for you:
If you are interested in starting a different kind of business, please browse our directory of guides below.