Business Plan Overview

Business Plan Overview

Why Do You Need a Business Plan? 

A business plan will help you build a business that will support you financially, have an impact on those around you, and leave a lasting legacy you can be proud of. 


A business plan helps you to peer into the future and predict different outcomes. Though it’s certainly not perfect, it enables you to map out where you currently are and where you’re headed. Specifically, a business plan helps you:

  • Estimate total startup costs 
  • Project revenues and profits 
  • Convince investors 
  • Compete from the start  
  • Anticipate challenges 

business plan helps keep you on track. It ensures that you focus your attention on the right things and enables you to avoid mistakes that could sink you. We’re going to walk you step-by-step through the process of creating a solid business plan. 

Business Plan

Before You Start 


Unfortunately, many business plans are wildly unrealistic. The initial excitement of starting the business often causes entrepreneurs to massively overestimate how successful they’ll be and underestimate the challenges they’ll encounter. 


To be effective, a business plan needs to be realistic. Before you launch, you want to be relatively confident that you have a good chance of succeeding. 


In many ways, a business plan should help you decide whether your idea will pan out. You may put together your business plan and then realize that the potential outcome isn’t as bright as you initially thought. That’s okay. It forces you to go back to the drawing board. 


Take the necessary time to do the market research, analyze your financial needs, and map out your strategy for the future. Don’t look at it as the thing that’s preventing you from getting started. View it as building a foundation for a successful, lasting business. 

Executive Summary 


The first section of any business plan will be the executive summary. It gives people a general sense of what your business is all about, what products or services you provide, where you’ve been, and where you’re headed. 


The Small Business Administration recommends that your plan contain at least the following six things: 


  • Mission statement 
  • General information such as founding date, names and roles of founders, and other essential details. 
  • Company highlights, including financial successes and other vital successes 
  • Products or services that you sell 
  • Financial information, including funding goals and current sources of funding 
  • Plans for the business 


Think of the executive summary as a detailed elevator pitch. It highlights the most critical points of your business plan without going into all the details. 


You may want to consider writing your executive summary after you’ve written the rest of your business plan. That way, you’re more familiar with all the relevant information. 

Company Overview 


This section provides more detail regarding exactly what your business does and how it’s structured. You can start by explaining:

  • The industry you’re in 
  • Your primary customer base 
  • The big problem that you solve for customers
  • How you solve that big problem 


Essentially, you’re explaining the reason for your business’s existence. You’re identifying a specific customer need within a particular market and then clarifying exactly how you’ll meet that need. 


The overview section functions as your Unique Value Proposition. It clearly and concisely explains the unique value that your business offers. If you’re struggling with this section, try to answer the following questions: 

  • Who do you serve? 
  • How do you serve them?

Market Analysis 


The market analysis section of your business plan provides in-depth information about your industry, your specific market, and the competition. If this section is done correctly, it assures readers that you know what you’re getting into. 


In your market analysis, seek to include the following information: 

  • Essential industry information: Size, growth, trends, and other pertinent details. 
  • Target market data: Ideal customers, their specific needs, demographic data. 
  • Target market size: Yearly amount spent, purchase frequency, projected growth. 
  • Market share potential: Percentage of target market you can acquire. 
  • Barriers to entry: Things that might make it challenging to succeed in the target market. 
  • Competition: Top competitors, market share, strengths. 


This section will take a significant amount of research, but it’s time well spent. First and foremost, it prepares you to succeed. Second, it helps investors know that you’ve done your due diligence. 

Organization and Management 


Next, describe how your business will be organized and structured. First, spell out the general structure of your business, both in organizational terms and in legal terms. Where does each key stakeholder fit into the big picture of your business (include an organizational chart)?


In terms of legal setup, are you: 

  • LLC? 
  • S-Corp? 
  • C-Corp? 
  • General partnership? 
  • Sole proprietor? 


Next, describe the background of key members of your team. This part is significant if you’re seeking funding. Investors want to know that you have experienced, successful individuals who can ensure that your business also succeeds. 


Finally, describe any key hires that will be necessary. This may not be immediately relevant, especially if you’re just getting started, but it will matter much more as you grow and expand. 

Products and Services 


This section explains what products or services your business will provide to customers. Start by describing your particular product or service and the specific need it will meet. It’s imperative to clarify precisely how your product or service will stand apart from the competition.


Within this section, you should also discuss: 

  • Product/service status: Is it ready to take to market? 
  • Development objectives: If it’s not prepared to go, what steps need to be taken? 
  • Proprietary information: Do you have any intellectual property, patents, or proprietary information essential to your business’s success? 
  • Supply chain: Do you depend on any suppliers or vendors? 


Make your product or service shine in this section. It should be abundantly clear both to you and the reader that you have something unique to offer and that you’re in a prime position to attract customers. 

Marketing and Sales 


This section explains how you’re going to get your product or service into the hands of customers. Your objective in this section is to clarify how you will make customers aware of your product or service and how you’ll convince them to buy from you. 


The first element in your marketing plan needs to be positioning concerning your competitors. Will you position yourself by offering: 

  •  Lower price? 
  • Superior quality? 
  • Superior service? 


Next, discuss the specific promotional methods you’ll use to get the word out about your product or service. Additionally, clarify the metrics you’ll use to evaluate whether your marketing efforts are working (leads generated, social media reach, website visitors) 


After laying out your marketing plan, discuss your sales plan. What method will you use to convince customers to buy from you? ○ Cold calling? 

  •  In-person meetings? 
  •  Webinars? 

Next, talk about who will be doing the selling. If you need a sales force, who will train them, and how big will the team be? 


Lastly, layout the budget you have for both sales and marketing. This will help readers gauge the scope of your efforts and possibly estimate results. 

Financial Projections 


In this section, paint a clear picture of your business’s current financial status while also mapping out where you hope to be in the future. Investors will closely examine this section to determine whether they want to give you funding. 


If you’ve been in business for a while, include as much past financial data as possible, including: 

  • Income statements 
  • Balance sheets 
  • Cash flow statements 
  • Operating budget 
  • Accounts receivable and payable statements (if appropriate) 
  • Documentation of any debt you’re carrying 


Your financial projections for the future will either be based on your past data or industry and competitor research (if you don’t have past data). If you’re not sure how to create these projections, consider hiring an accountant or financial advisor to help you. 


Funding Request 


In this section, you’ll lay out exactly how much funding you need over the coming five years. Explain how you’re going to use the budget to achieve your goals. 


Include the following details in this section: 

  • The amount of funding you need right now 
  • The funding you’ll need down the road (up to five years) 
  • The type of funding you desire (loan, investment) 
  • The terms you’re requesting for the funding 


Additionally, explain how you will be using the funds. 

  • Will you be acquiring inventory? 
  • Paying down debt? 
  • Hiring employees? 

It’s also critical to lay out your future financial plans so that investors have a good idea of what they’re getting into. 


As much as possible, try to customize your funding request based on who you’re talking to. If you’re asking a bank, provide them with a repayment plan. If you’re asking an investor, give them an estimated ROI. 



The last section of your business plan is the appendix. The appendix includes supporting information and documents that substantiate what you’ve written in the previous sections. 


You may want to include: 

  • Credit histories 
  • Permits 
  • Product pictures 
  • Legal documents 
  • Licenses 
  • Patents 
  • Contracts 

In all the previous sections, you’re trying to paint a compelling picture of what your business is like and where it’s headed. You want to provide the reader with enough data to help them grasp your vision but not so much that you bog them down. 


The appendix allows you to provide extra details to the reader without disrupting the overall experience. If the reader wants to look at these details, they can refer to the appendix. 

Business Mastery

Business Mastery

As you work to make your career dreams a reality, Section 1 of Business Mastery explores how to set a strong foundation. It prepares you to decide your career based on a clear sense of who you are and what you want to accomplish.


Chapter 1 looks at ways to increase your self-awareness and make self-knowledge a powerful ally for the work ahead of you. This chapter mainly consists of activities to help you assess your current state, identify your strengths and challenges, and clarify your values. The chapter finishes with an exploration of your ideal future.


Chapter 2 helps you transform the insights you gained from Chapter 1 into the activities of goal setting, strategic planning, and follow-through. These three key activities form the common denominator among successful people in all fields. This chapter assists you in developing a mission statement and goals—and translating them into actions vital to your business’s daily, weekly, and monthly growth. We then look at how savvy business people use strategic planning to create a roadmap to success.


Chapter 3 helps you define what success means to you and supports you in a fearless examination of roadblocks that may stand in your way. You’ll also find tips on how successful people manage their time, track results, and handle risks wisely.


Chapter 4 looks at how to ensure that your career lasts for the long term and grows as you do. It identifies time-tested ways to enhance career longevity and avoid burnout. The chapter also explores ways to develop a strong support system to help you stay on track and true to your vision.

In Section 2 of Business Mastery, the theme of intentional excellence takes center stage. Intentional excellence requires unflinching honesty and courage, and it results from making your integrity central to whatever you do. It’s the result of the consistent and conscious effort made visible in the behaviors, interactions, and relationships you establish within your practice.


Chapter 5 focuses on measures of excellence that are different from markers of success like client numbers and bank balances. We start with a look at professional ethics, which exist not to catch people in wrongdoing but to guide practitioners toward greatness and present guidelines for recognizing ethical dilemmas and resolving them. This discussion flows naturally into the key role that a professional image plays in building a successful practice. The last two topics of the chapter consider how goodwill and social responsibility bring excellence into

your practice—as you share your talents, time, and resources to support the causes closest to your heart.


Chapter 6 discusses why good communication skills are essential in business and highlights ways to fine-tune key skills, such as active listening and reflective feedback. It looks at the power of first impressions and rapport building, as well as several common barriers to effective communication. It includes useful tips on how to handle the inevitable conflicts and difficult situations that are part of professional life. This chapter also offers practical insights into how to conduct effective client interviews. Excellent recordkeeping is another aspect of good communication, so we discuss SOAP and Wellness formats for documenting client sessions and charting progress. You will also find a wealth of practical tips and resources to develop excellent communication skills and use technology appropriately.

Section 3 of Business Mastery provides an insider’s look into career opportunities in the wellness field. This section provides an overview of wellness career trends and information to help you determine if working as an employee or being self-employed is the best option for you. You’ll also gain valuable insights into different work environments so that you can approach your career choices with credibility and confidence.


Chapter 7 starts with a statistical review of complementary and alternative healthcare usage and then follows up with an overview of the trends in wellness careers. It discusses why career focus is essential and the steps involved in clarifying that focus. The topics of employment, self-employment, and independent contractor status are explored, including the pros and cons of each choice. The chapter wraps up with an activity to assist you in defining your ideal career.


Chapter 8 provides you with insights into working in spas and salons, whether you are an employee or an independent contractor. It highlights what you can expect to find in these environments, such as the corporate culture, training requirements, scheduling concerns, and seniority issues. It also includes success tips for each of the most common types of spas.

Primary healthcare settings offer a variety of CAM services on both an inpatient and outpatient basis. This translates into a growing number of career placement opportunities.


Chapter 9 focuses on what to expect when working in primary healthcare settings and provides suggestions to enhance your experience in this environment.


Chapter 10 explores the advantages and disadvantages of group practices. It examines the key aspects of this option and includes overall tips for success in group practice. The chapter then identifies specific concerns and success strategies for working in a wellness center or a specialty center.


The majority of practitioners work at least part-time as sole proprietors. Chapter 11 takes an in-depth look at the challenges and opportunities with private practice options, such as working in a home office, commercial office space, primary care provider’s office, fitness center, or on an outcall basis.

Section 4 of Business Mastery provides information on how to find and keep a job. Even if you plan on being an independent practitioner, you never know when you might want to work as an employee, even if it’s just on a temporary or part-time basis.


Chapter 12 covers the fundamental aspects of employment. The chapter begins with a section on career success secrets and then describes how to find potential employers, research companies and hone your interviewing skills.


Successful job seekers assemble an employment kit with all of the items needed to help procure an interview and get hired. Chapter 13 reviews the key items to put in that kit and focuses on how to write a top-notch résumé and accompanying cover letter.


Chapter 14 reviews how to effectively navigate employment contracts and, when the time is right, renegotiate terms (e.g., a raise, booking seniority, benefits, advancement). The chapter concludes by covering ways to excel in a performance review.


Studies show that most business failures are due to improper management or undercapitalization, not because the owners were underskilled in the performance of their job duties.

Section 5 of Business Mastery provides the necessary groundwork for a business to grow and prosper. It encourages you to take the time to master the basic business fundamentals so you can maximize your chance of success and owners.


Chapter 15 looks at the critical elements involved in a business start-up. It covers how to assess the feasibility of your business idea, find start-up financing, determine the laws and regulations you must follow, choose a business name, and determine client fee structures. The chapter closes with exploring the option of buying a practice.


Choosing an appropriate business location can dramatically impact your success. Chapter 16 covers the essential elements to consider when looking for a location, negotiating a fair lease, and navigating zoning, insurance, and licensing regulations. It also explores how to design the interior office space. For practitioners on the move, the chapter closes by discussing how to manage the relocation of your practice, near or far.

Avoid common pitfalls that plague many small businesses.


Finally, Chapter 17 provides detailed instructions for creating your business plan—an indispensable tool for mastering both short- and long-term success. The chapter details the significant components of a business plan, including creating a financial forecast to realistically assess the finances required to launch and maintain your business. We also include a guide of additional tips and valuable resources to help you create a solid business plan.

Section 6 of Business Mastery focuses on the nuts and bolts of business operations, including tips and information to help you run your business smoothly and efficiently and how to transition it. While much of the information in this section is geared toward self-employed practitioners, some of the topics are key to all practitioners.


Even if you plan to be an employee, this information helps you understand what’s involved in establishing a business and the costs of running it, thus giving you a better appreciation of what an employer offers. This knowledge is also crucial if you plan on moving into management.


Chapter 18 focuses on office management. We start with policies. Although not many people thrill at the thought of developing policies and procedures, this chapter shows how they’re like the frame of a house—a necessary part of building a house that lasts and a business that thrives. You’ll find tips on how to write policies and procedures, organize your office, and make smart technology choices.


Chapter 19 examines the aspects of actually managing a practice, including complying with HIPAA regulations and handling insurance reimbursement. Also included are valuable insights into contract basics, effective negotiation, and conflict resolution.


Chapter 20 presents the essentials of financial management. It provides concrete information to help you keep the books, prepare financial reports, and understand tax laws. You’ll also learn how to use barter to exchange goods and services with others. Finally, the chapter covers the basics of retirement planning and offers several helpful resources to assist you in planning for your future financial stability.


Product sales are an excellent diversification method, and the profits boost your bottom line while serving your clients. Additionally, many employees are required to sell products. Chapter 21 explores how to sell products ethically. It covers how to choose appropriate products, provides ideas on selling and marketing products, and closes with tips on effective displays.



For growing practices, Chapter 22 provides insights into when and how to hire support or professional staff. It also explores the characteristics of a good employer, examines the regulations regarding employees and independent contractors, and guides you on managing your team successfully.


Chapter 23 guides you in consideration of transitioning your practice. It starts by highlighting major decision-making pinnacles and discusses exploration and evaluation techniques. The first option covers the variety of ways you can transfer or sell your practice and provides a step-by-step process to achieve the best outcome possible. The chapter concludes with a checklist for closing your practice, including steps to take before closing and after the official closing.

Section 7 of Business Mastery explores how to master the marketing tasks that are essential to your success. Successful practitioners know who they want to work with, understand how to find those potential clients through appropriate marketing techniques, and attract the desired clients by clearly and engagingly describing what they do.

Practitioners maintain a thriving practice by being client-centered:

  • Having an inviting treatment space
  • Using high-quality equipment
  • Conducting thorough treatment plans
  • Following up, and, most importantly
  • Listening and responding to each client’s unique needs

What’s the best way to begin? Like building a house, it’s wise to start with a foundation and build from there.


Chapter 24 provides that foundation by detailing how to identify your target markets, develop a marketing plan, and take action steps to attract new clients and build a thriving practice. The chapter also introduces a virtual toolbox of marketing concepts, such as positioning, branding, and differential advantage, along with valuable insights into how you can put them to work to grow your business.


The majority of marketing endeavors that practitioners utilize fall under the categories of promotions and community relations. Chapter 25 provides the framework for a solid house by giving a primer of low- and no-cost marketing techniques focusing on promotions and community relations.


Chapter 26 is analogous to the furniture in the house. This chapter highlights the primary marketing materials you need, along with tips on how to design and incorporate them.


Maintaining an effective online presence is like providing the power to run your house. Chapter 27 explores the critical elements of designing an effective website and engaging with your community through social media and other online activities. Think about advertising techniques as a sign on your front yard inviting people in.


Chapter 28 highlights the significant print and broadcast media advertising venues. It also includes tips on content and design of display ads, with before-and-after examples.


Chapter 29 helps you to navigate the media and get them to knock on your door. It covers how to develop media relations, the steps involved in getting interviewed, how to write a press release, and the key elements in media kits.


Chapter 30 rounds out the house design by focusing on creative ways to retain clients. It explores how exceptional customer service and incentive programs foster long-term client relationships and how you can put customer service action plans to work to enhance your business success.

Massage Academics

Business Mastery Price List

Business Mastery Price List

Self Study Program

$225.00 Canadian

NOW $125.00!!

Group Coaching Program

7 Sessions / Max 20 Students

$400.00 Canadian

NOW $300.00

Individual Coaching Program

7 Sessions / Personal & Business Coaching

$600.00 Canadian

NOW $450.00

Rates are in Canadian Dollars, but all are WELCOME! Just beware of the exchange rate!

My Personal & Business Caoching rates are $95-$110 per session.

For Business Mastery Coaching, I have reduced my coaching rates in the hopes that you get the biggest bang in the Evolution of Your Practice!

For those starting out, or for those wanting to shift, change, or grow, Business Mastery is for you!


Business Mastery Price List

Massage Therapy 2020

Good Morning! It’s April 19, 2020, and Covid-19 is still a problem for the World.

We’ve all seen change during this time… personally and professionally.
I consider myself fortunate. The ‘social distancing,’ and temporary closure of my practice, has given me time to:

    1. Help out our one son that is a front line staffer. The time ‘off’ allows us to look after our grandaughter full-time, and as needed, a time I never would’ve had if not for this pandemic.

    2. I have an opportunity to work on building my courses!

   3.My spouse and I have been practicing for this ‘quarantine’ for about 3 years now… LOL. See, due to illness, he has been on permanent disability, so we do not face the challenges many others are with the too much together time!

What I miss:

  1. My clients. I miss the ones that tell me about their families and what’s going on. This week I will be calling a few to see how they are doing.

  2. Coffee / Lunch with friends. Somethings we take for granted, that we’ll always be able to get together tomorrow, or later in the week. How often did ‘we’ reschedule that coffee date because one of us was too busy?

 3. Physical contact with our other son. We talk through windows and on Go-To Meeting, but it’s hard NOT to hug. Not to have contact. But at least we have a window and the computer!! So, I consider myself lucky.


While most of us are feeling the pinch of Covid on a financial front, remember we are not the only ones. Everyone is experiencing this.
And it’s not just us. All professions from Massage Therapists to dentists, to the people working in warehouses, are being affected.

Covid has caused a HUGE disruption in everyone’s lives, so don’t give up!

Start planning now for the RE-OPENING, and some rebuilding of YOUR practice. Now is the time to update your records, your website, and your marketing plan!

 Redraft a new Business Plan
 Clean out client files
 Plan a Re-Opening Debut
 Redesign or Update your Website (Often I see ‘out fo date’ websites because time has not allowed int he past. Now is a great time to do this)!
 Revamp your space. Paint it, or just move furniture around, either way, it’s a change for when you open again!
 Deep cleaning can also be done at this time… REFRESH!

How has this affected you? Positives? Negatives? How are you handling it? What are some of your suggestions for staying in touch with clients? What about preparing for re-opening?
Stay Healthy, and Stay Connected! Shaunna
Accounting and Massage Therapy

Accounting and Massage Therapy

We’re Massage Therapists, not Accountants. Accounting and Massage Therapy is not something one, generally, hears in the same sentence… except for here.

If your self-employed, or own a business, you do need to understand the basics. It’s when you don’t, that financial upset happens.

Quicken Deluxe

Business and Personal Accounting made Easy!!

Accounting Definitions


Total Resources on hand

  • Cash in bank account
  • Equipment
  • Inventory
  • Receivables

Cash in the bank account is fairly self-explanatory. It’s the money in your account, daily, weekly, monthly, yearly… before, and after, expenses.


Everything you need to run your business:

  • Client chair(s)
  • Massage Table / Chair
  • Computer / Printer
  • Desk
  • Filing Cabinet
  • Therapist chair, or stool
  • Modality tools (cups/ stones/ hot packs, etc.).
  • Linens (sheets/ towels/ face cradle covers)
  • Mop / Vacuum
  • Washer / Dryer


I had two specific breakdowns of this. The first was for Office Use Only, the other was For Resale.

Office Use Only:

  • Oils / Lotions
  • Laundry soap / Dryer sheets
  • Cleaning supplies
  • Toilet Paper
  • Paper towel
  • Office supplies (Paper/ staples/ receipt ribbon/ ink)
  • Receipt Book
  • Postage

Inventory for Resale: The products you sell to clients for added value, and profit:

  • Bath Salts / Products
  • Massage Oils / Lotions
  • Supplements
  • Topical Pain Lotions
  • Candles

Receivables: this is money owed to you.

  • Billing Accounts (Insurance Companies)
  • Rent from other Therapists


Accounts Payable

This is what you owe. Current and long term:

  • The Bank
  • Credit Card
  • Loans
  • Taxes
  • Utilities


This is the net worth of a business. The difference between the Assets and Liabilities.

A good software program looks after all of this for you. Again, I refer to Quicken for my needs.


While all of the Accounting needs are met within a program, like Quicken, you should still understand the basics of accounting terms, and the bookkeeping aspects, in order to keep your finances running smoothly.

What do you do to keep financial order in your practice? Let me know!


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