😱 Business Plans fail more often than we might think: especially in TV businesses.

🚩 I came across this flyer a few weeks ago while crossing a street in Berlin. My immediate thought was: what a fail. Completely wrong marketing, waste of resources and more wishful thinking than strategic execution.

💡 Why do business plans fail so often, and particularly, when it comes to plans for a new TV venture?

1️⃣ An idea alone is not a plan, least not a business: I get often approached by what I call ‘wannapreneurs’. They think they have this terrific idea and, yet in almost 90% of all these cases it is nothing more than an idea. Naturally, our industry thrives on ideas, lives on creativity. That is, however, only one part of the equation: the other part is execution. Most of these wannapreneurs underestimate the hard work & complexity, that a TV business requires; even a simple TV show needs planning and attention to detail. The occasionally successful UGC gives the wrong impression; you need more than an iphone and some funny situation to become a sustainable success.
2️⃣ Lack of Resources: Most businesses fail because they do not plan for the massive resources that any TV industry venture requires. The most critical resource of all of them? Money. Even for a small venture, you require investments. Overall technology and everything else has gotten cheaper and it is easier to launch a TV operation nowadays. However, even on a small budget and with tightly managed resources, plans do fall apart because in inadequate budgets. No matter how small or large the budget.
3️⃣ Wrong focus and orientation: You have to be focused. I do not mean to adhere stubbornly to a plan. With focus I mean that you need to focus on a certain overall problem that you like to resolve, a topic or theme that you want to address and, most of all, your unique and special audience. You always should find orientation when thinking about your typical audience: what does she want to watch, which content is relevant to them, where do I reach him, how can I best service it?
4️⃣ Flexibility and “Elasticity”: Honestly, I do not like the word ‘Plan’ in ‘Business Plan’. Ok, it is useful to have a plan, of course. But sticking to a plan, no matter what, might be the beginning of a huge failure. My definition is rather that of a ‘Business Framework’ or ‘Business Model’. This allows for a bit more room to manoeuvre and the flexibility to adapt to the situation and market requirements & changes.
5️⃣ Fear to launch: a common I see so often. People get lost in the plan rather than launching at all. You need to be out there to learn, and adapt your plan accordingly. Only planning alone does not get you anywhere. Get out there and do it.

🚦 What are your goes and no-goes for a business plan in TV?