Modern Business Plans vs. Conservative: What is best for your Startup

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Planning a modern business plan can seem like an overwhelming task. 

There are so many decisions to make, and some of them may be difficult or confusing.

It is important to remember that you don’t have to do this on your own! We will walk you through the process, step by step.

In this blog post, we will cover what a modern-day business plan entails compared to conservative methods from decades past, the pros and cons of each strategy, how to create a modern-day business plan for your startup company, and more!

What is the difference between a conservative and modern business plan

Conservative business plans were created during the Industrial Revolution to help businesses create strategic and operational objectives in their work environment.

These plans outline a more logical, step-by-step approach with clear goals and deadlines to complete those steps.

They are generally longer than modern-day business plans because they include many details on costs associated with completing these tasks.

In contrast, modern business plans usually have fewer details on how to complete specific tasks.

For example, they might not be as thorough when it comes to the accomplishment of the strategic goals of acquiring a certain number of customers, as business is changing on a daily in the startup environment.

It might also be the case that your startup follows a very modern digital approach and needs simply by the nature of being digital less overall information.

To give a simple example, costs like rental offices, computers, electricity and many more might not even exist for you.

Avoid costly mistakes and get together with experts.

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Why you should consider a conservative or modern business plan for your startup

So let’s assume you’re not a modern digital startup with low expenses, scalability and high-revenue potential; why would it still make sense for you to go with a modern business plan approach?

The honest answer is: It depends.

  • Who are you writing the business plan for?
  • Who are you trying to convince?
  • Are you pitching to conservative banks or modern investors?

Even if you have a relatively conservative approach to your business, you can still create a general modern feel to it and benefit from it.

Maybe your startup is very user-friendly, sustainable, or innovative, and it might need to attract the right target group by simply feeling more modern and digitally up-to-date.

Think of social media campaigns, ads, influencer marketing, you name it.

If any of these display an essential part of your business strategy, it might make sense to go the modern business plan way.

Image showing different parts of a successful business strategy

How to write an effective modern business plan that will get investors interested in your company

Now let’s dive into the probably most exciting part of this article.

You’ve decided to take the modern route, great.

But what does this even mean?

A modern business plan entails these three key elements:

  • modern design
  • simplicity
  • social media integration

#1 Modern Design

Modern design is probably the easiest but most important aspect of your modern feeling business plan.

Take a look at Google and search for the term “modern business plan.”

You will quickly get an idea of what these plans might look like.

Most results will show you some design templates that feel like PowerPoint templates.

While this might seem reasonable at first sight, be aware that the investors you’re trying to convince see the same templates over and over again up to a thousand times per day.

Using one of these templates might result in investors declining your business plan idea right away, just because it seems like you took the next best template and haven’t put any real effort into producing something valuable.

This is one of the most important reasons why you should not use a business plan template

And if you take one thing with you from this section of the article, let it be this:

Portrait of team leader Kai from M&M Consultants


Your modern business plan needs to have a modern design that seems well-thought-out, uses not too many colors, has simple design elements, and feels like something special.

The feeling of something special comes down to having something unique.

You can create uniqueness through the layout, used colors, wordings, and headlines, or even in the way your business plan is presented.

Are you developing an innovative AI virtual reality app?

Imagine having your business plan set up in the same way your app works, and people could read it and experience it in the virtual reality AI app!

Now that would be something special!

Another way to make it feel more special would be to incorporate your startup’s values into your business plan.

As a more simple example than the VR app: If sustainability is your main thing, try to reconstruct the feeling of sustainability in your design.

Sustainable colors printed on sustainable paper with a unique wooden texture might be a good start.

#2 Simplicity

The most straightforward plan is the best one.

Remember that you are writing a business plan for people, not computers.

The more complex your idea or product becomes, the more challenging it will be to communicate in simple terms.

The most important two questions to ask yourself for simplicity are as follows:

  • Do you know which words to use to make your potential investors and stakeholders understand your plan easily?
  • Is your concept easy to visualize?

When your plan feels overcomplicated, a way to simplify it and make it understandable for everyone an outside perspective from an expert can help.

To help you with that, we support you with a free business plan check.

A good tip here is to focus on your main message:


What problem are you solving with your startup?

Also note: A problem might be just a specific need of your potential customers. 

Convenience plays a substantial part in the modern market.

And it’s not necessarily that someone has a problem of inconvenience with a product.

It might likewise just be that your solution is more convenient than the other already quite convenient solutions.

Typography showing the words Social Media in a creative way

#3 Social Media Integration

Having a clear idea of your Social Media Integration is critical when it comes to modern business plans.

Social media is a powerful way to create relationships and establish your brand’s voice.

Exclamation mark as an Icon

Don’t forget:

Social media is also an opportunity for customer service, lead generation, and market research!

Some key factors to guide you along:

  • How do you plan on using social media in your modern business strategy?

  • Is there anything specific the reader should know about how you’re going to use these digital platforms?

  • Pick which Social Media platform will be most important: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter? Or even TikTok? And why?
  • Which other networks are relevant to this company/brand?

  • How will you get initial traction?

  • How will you scale?

Note: Don’t skip the part of qualifying the appropriate social media channel.

You might like Instagram more, but if your business focuses on b2b acquisition, places like LinkedIn might make more sense.

Don’t worry – you will find your target groups on at least one of these platforms.

Key point: Communicate which social media platform you will use and how you will make use of them to attract your chosen target group.

If you can, provide data regarding potential conversion rates and CAC(Customer Acquisition Cost) based on your niches standards on the chosen platform(s).


Examples of successful startups who use different types of modern business plans

Following is a list of successful startups with modern business plans that all have a different approach to handling their business strategy.

  • MeUndies: Five-year plan, sets goals for the next five years and breaks them down into milestones to reach those goals by 2020. 


  • Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi: Setting up an advisory panel made of experts from diverse backgrounds to discuss proposed policies within the company and provide feedback to create a better impact outside of its borders or industry.


  • Airbnb: Their goal consists of shorter timeframes than traditional companies; they hire people who can work at lightning speed compared to other organizations. They also invest heavily in technology instead of having conservative paperwork.


  • Etsy: The company focuses on continual innovation. It was founded by a web programmer who wanted to create an “Etsy for crafts” and made it into what it is today.



Let’s sum up what we have learned so far.

Pros of modern business plans?

  • More agile than conservative
  • focuses on the future instead of historical data

Cons of modern business plans?

  • Rather an abstract approach with not as many guidelines in comparison to traditional ones
  • might be difficult to figure out what to include and what to exclude without having professional help or experience in business planning

Which plan should you choose? 

  • Choose the plan that best suits your needs, target group, and goals.
  • If you’re looking for a more modern approach, go with a modern business plan!

What is an example of where I would use this type of business plan?

  • Smaller businesses or startups are most suitable for these types of plans.
  • You might also want to get one if you have many different ideas on what direction your company should take and don’t know which way to head in yet – a simple modern business plan to get more clearance.
Fotography of a coffee cup with the word begin written on it


Final Words

The majority of business plans are conservative, meaning that they’re built for the status quo.

If you want to get ahead in today’s marketplace and show that you’re able to create better solutions, then it may be time to consider what is needed for success in this new era.

This might mean giving up some comfort zone items like conservatism or outdated marketing tactics that might not be effective anymore.

We can help you create an effective plan optimized not only for stability but also for growth by looking at all aspects of your current situation and where you hope to go with your business in the future.

Do you need more guidance on how to build a successful modern startup?

Click here to book an appointment and set up a call right away!

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