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Ideas for Small Business Grant Proposals
Before you develop a grant proposal youíll want to develop a proposal that is well thought through and that it is a workable business plan. No grant awarding body is going to give funds to a business idea that doesnít seem as though it can work. Putting together a complete proposal package can make the difference between being awarded that grant or losing out to another entrepreneur who has taken the time to write a knockout proposal. Donít hold back on the information that you include in your grant proposal. The application process has been designed to be complex in order to provide the grant program with everything they need to make an informed decision.
Become as familiar as you can with the requirements of the specific grant for which you are applying. Some of the information that you should acquire before you start writing the proposal include: (1) necessary requirements for the specified grant, (2) the deadline for the grant application, (3) how long it will take to get an answer back from the awarding body, (4) how to get access to all the forms within the application, and (5) any specific procedures that relate to the specific grant for which you are applying. If you donít have any experience when it comes to writing grants you might want to take a workshop that specializes in grant writing. As a last resort you can hire someone to write the grant proposal for you but this should be a last option. Many grant programs want to see that you have the ability to write your own proposal as an indication of your business savvy.
Determine ahead of time if your business idea has been done too many times in the area where you live. Check out the competition to see what you could improve on if you opened a similar type of business. You need to make sure that your business idea is either unique or that itís an idea that is going to stand out among your competition. If the idea for your business is already in existence you might want to rethink your business project and make it slightly different from other businesses in the area. Take a look at other grants that have been awarded and take note of what those businesses did to be awarded the money. Some government programs will let you look at sample proposals as a guideline for your own proposal.
Community support can be crucial in developing a great proposal. Talk to organizations where you live to see if you can get political, academic, and professional support. Support can come in the form of a signed letter. Keep in mind that it can take a few months for your grant proposal to be awarded or denied.
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