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Strategyzer – A Timely Guide To Their Business Model Canvas

To say that COVID has taken the wind out of lots of business owner’s sails is an understatement.  It’s quite fair to say that SMEs in 2021 have and are continuing to face challenges that we wouldn’t have imagined possible only a year or so ago.  There’s lots of doom and gloom in the economy, but there are also business owners who are repurposing their businesses by pivoting to fill gaps they see in the current marketplace. In this article we want to help you if you’re planning on repurposing or pivoting.

Why planning is a crucial part of repurposing or pivoting

If your business has been adversely affected by COVID and you’re looking for ways to get your till ringing again, it might be tempting to spot an opportunity and go after it with everything you’ve got – without doing the necessary planning.  This is rarely a good idea.

Repurposing or pivoting your business is almost as serious as starting up all over again, and it’s well worth making sure you address it as such.  We wrote an article recently on repurposing and pivoting, which you can find here.  In short, when repurposing or pivoting your business, it’s really important to do your homework to make sure you don’t jump from the frying pan into the fire in a state of panic. 

There’s a whole host of tools that you can use to make doing your homework simpler and easier, but we find this one particularly helpful.  You may or may not be familiar with Strategyzer’s Business Model Canvas.  Either way, we couldn’t help but feel it’s a good time to either renew your relationship with this tool or to get to know it for the first time.

Why not just create a business plan?

You may be asking why a Business Model Canvas tool?  Why not just write a business plan?  Business plans are a great idea and are often required if you’re looking to borrow money or persuade an investor to come on board.  But the thing about business plans is that they can sometimes end up so detailed that you lose clarity around the big picture.  That, and the fact that once they’re done, they have a tendency to sit in a drawer or a filing cabinet gathering dust. 

The great thing about Strategyzer’s Business Model Canvas is that it encourages you to brainstorm around very specific, purposeful aspects of your business.  It also gives you a really clear vision of the minimum requirements to get your new idea off the ground.  What’s more, once you’re reasonably clear on your ideas, you can probably get your first version done in a matter of minutes.

What is Strategyzer’s Business Model Canvas?

Strategyzer’s Business Model Canvas is a single page vision of your business that enables you to spot gaps in your concept and drill down on all the key elements.  It’s a simple yet highly effective tool that, once you get into it, you can complete in minutes.  What this means is that you can revisit the canvas as your business changes and grows, enabling you to feel in control.

Why is this tool so useful when repurposing or pivoting?

The advantage of using the Business Model Canvas when repurposing or pivoting your business is that it allows you to drill deep on your new vision or concept before investing a penny.  It enables you to spot gaps in your idea and to establish what’s required to move from where you are now to where you want to be.  By using the prompts on the page, you’ll be able to cover all bases in a very short space of time without wasting days on a detailed and wordy business plan just to find your idea is full of faults.

The canvas contains all the core elements you need to establish whether your idea has legs or not.  Its sections cover: Value Proposition; Key Activities; Key Resources; Key Partners; Customer Segments; Customer Relationships and Channels as well as Cost Structure and Revenue Streams.  It is an incredibly simple tool that when used correctly really packs a punch – and is particularly useful when planning change.

Where can you get it?

You can download Strategyzer’s Business Model Canvas here, completely free of charge.  You will need to give up your email address to get access.  If you’re wary about doing this because of spamming, our experience is that Strategyzer doesn’t send spam and if they send you emails that you don’t find useful, you can always unsubscribe from their list afterwards.  At the bottom of the page where you download the canvas, there’s a short video providing an overview to help you complete it.  If you want deeper help, simply do a search on YouTube, you’ll find a host of short and lengthy videos that’ll make everything really clear.

How you can use it

We find that the most powerful way to use this tool is to start by using it to get your vision down on paper.  Don’t aim for a perfect version at the start, just aim to get your ideas down in black and white.  Once you’ve done that you can use the canvas to refine, refine and further refine your ideas to the point you’re ready to share them.  This is where the canvas is really clever because it’s the ideal way to clearly share your ideas in a structured way with advisors, mentors or colleagues.

Don’t forget about your trusted experts

Once you’ve reached the point where you’ve refined your Business Model as far as you feel you can it’s a good idea to get your trusted experts on board.  It makes complete sense to share your ideas with the people who have helped you on your journey before you go too far with any major change.  Sometimes an objective eye will see things that you don’t, and of course every expert has their own strengths to bring to the table – but don’t seek too many points of view – as this can lead to confusion and conflicting advice.

The bottom line is this.  If your business is struggling and you want to explore some ideas for repurposing or pivoting, this tool is a great way to do it without getting bogged down in 30-page reports.  Check it out and see what you think.

And don’t forget that the team at Payplus is here to help you achieve success.  All you need to do is reach out

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