Recommended Resources for Business Planning

As you put your business plan together, you may discover that you need some additional tools — a book devoted to marketing, for example. You can find dozens of useful titles in the marketplace — particularly ones that concentrate on specific areas, such as marketing or financial planning, or ones that focus on particular kinds of businesses, such as nonprofits or sole proprietorships.

For additional background on general business-planning issues, you may want to pick up a copy of Business Plans For Dummies, 2nd Edition, by Paul Tiffany and Steven Peterson (Wiley). For help preparing your marketing plan, consider Small Business Marketing For Dummies by Barbara Findlay Schenck (Wiley).

Although the basic principles of business planning may be timeless, certain subjects — Internet marketing, for example — change rapidly, and a book that’s more than a few years old may reflect ancient history. If you want timely information — details about tax considerations for a small business, for example — be sure to check when the book was published.

Magazines, newspapers, and journals offer another way to track what’s happening in the world of business in general and your industry in particular. Identify several titles of interest and become a subscriber so that you can routinely scan the business environment for trends or new developments that may affect your business plan. Your local library is a good place to go to review past issues of magazines and journals to see whether they’re relevant to your business.

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