entrepreneur canvas

The Entrepreneur Canvas: The Practical Method for Planning Your Next Business

Elena Hudgens
By Elena Hudgens 25 Min Read

Goal-based marketing plans are designed to help marketers align their content with the goals of their target audience. Creating this type of plan is a lot easier than it sounds. It’s just a matter of putting together all the information you have about your target audience, determining what they want out of life, and mapping out how you can provide them with the content they’re looking for. Once your plan is ready, you’ll be able to filter through your content more strategically and easily present it to your audience at the right time. Here are some key steps that will help you create a goal-based marketing plan using The Entrepreneur Canvas. 

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Section 1: The Entrepreneur Canvas

Entrepreneurship can seem like a daunting task. The Entrepreneur Canvas Method will teach you how to take your idea and turn it into a business that will work. From understanding what makes a great logo, to making the right design choices and navigating the design process, read on to learn how to start your own company.

Starting your own business can be an exciting and rewarding experience – but it can also be challenging. That’s why we created The Entrepreneur Canvas Method. It takes some of the uncertainty out of planning your company.

With the Entrepreneur Canvas, you can plan your business from beginning to end. Start by going through the processes below with your current business and discover how to be more proactive in areas where you’re behind. Learn the four pillars of emotional intelligence and how to avoid being emotionally invested in your company!

You can’t get anywhere if you don’t get your ideas out of your head and into a format that you can share with others. One of the most critical things you can do as an entrepreneur is to do that.

I found the Entrepreneur Canvas to be an effective tool for communicating my business ideas. I could see how it would be easy to move through the Entrepreneur canvas, using it as a visual guide.

So you want to launch a startup, but don’t have a business plan? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. The problem with business plans for startups and entrepreneurs is that they’re a waste of time. That’s right! You can research your business plan only when you’re at the right stage of your company’s growth or investment.

Section 2: How to use the Entrepreneur Canvas

Now you can organize your business model with a tool that’s easy to understand and communicate. With the Entrepreneur Canvas, you’ll always know where you’re going and why.

A pitch deck is a one-page document that works through the fundamental parts of a business or product. It coherently and engagingly structures an idea.

entrepreneur canvas
The Entrepreneur Canvas: The Practical Method for Planning Your Next Business 7

The right side focuses on the customer, while the left side focuses on the business. Together, they meet around the value proposition of exchanging value between each other. Learn More.

What is its purpose?

  • Visuals are a powerful way to communicate your idea. Here’s how to draw a picture of the Entrepreneur Canvas.
  • When we work together to help you understand your business and how to make it into a profitable one, we’re making connections between what you want and how you can make it happen.
  • If you’re looking for a system that can help you make decisions, then you’re in luck. A systematic design like the Entrepreneur Canvas is a process that looks at what kinds of customer decisions influence the use of your systems.
  • It’s always better to be informed about all of your options before making a decision. You can achieve this by attending our free webinar.

Here’s how to use it

The Value Proposition:

Your value proposition is the foundation of your business, so wouldn’t it be great to have someone review it for you? We’ll look over your business plan and provide professional feedback through the Entrepreneur Canvas.

Marketing is one of the most important aspects of running a successful company. It’s the key to connecting your business and your customers and ensuring that you’re getting what you need from each other. Your business can make a difference to your customers. When you solve a problem or relieve pain for them, they’ll reward you with money in return.

When defining your business or product, consider these questions:

  • How am I solving this issue?
  • Is there a reason why someone would want this problem solved?
  • In this case, what is the motivation behind the issue?

Important Tips:

A good way to approach this for users is by looking at your customer segments and figuring out where your product or service solves the problem for your customer, based on Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs.

You are a key partner in their success. The Value Proposition you provide is the big difference between your company and your competitors.

Having context around the goals that your company is trying to achieve for their Customer Segments and where your business/product/service fits in the value chain is important.

The Customer Segments

Segmenting your customers is a smart way to provide them with more personalized service. You can gain insights into their needs, wants, and desires, creating a more fulfilling experience for all. Learn More.

The following factors should be taken into consideration when defining your customer segments:

  • Who do we solve the problem for?
  • Is my value proposition valued by the right people?
  • What kind of business are they?
  • How would you describe those businesses if they exist?
  • Do they belong to another group?
  • Can I appeal to both men and women with my value proposition?
  • Are there many young adults or teenagers interested in it?
  • Is it possible for me to identify the characteristics of my prospects?

Here are a few things you should take into consideration before diving into your target market. The first is your customer segment. The second is market size, and the third is how many people there are in that customer segment.

A great place to start understanding your customer is to create customer personas for each of your Customer Segments by the Entrepreneur Canvas. This will help you understand who they are, what they want, and how they feel, so you can provide a tailored experience that is just right for them.

The Customer Relationships

Okay, good. So you know your Value Proposition and Personas, but what is the relationship between your business and your customers?

Customer Relationships are defined as how a business interacts with its customers.

Have you ever wanted to meet someone in person, but couldn’t find time to do so? Have you been afraid of meeting in person without any experience? The good news is that not meeting over the phone or online doesn’t mean that your business will be run online. Learn More.

Here are a few examples:

  • Person-to-person (one-to-one)
  • Contractors hired by third parties
  • Online
  • One-to-many [events]
  • Telecommunications

Creating a User Journey Map can help you understand your customers. It’ll help you clarify the points of engagement between you and your customer, as well as the modes used to relate to them. This will also help you start to define your operations as a business, and it will also help identify opportunities for automation.

Section 3: What Does a Goal-Based Marketing Plan Mean?

Marketing goals are specific objectives that marketers set for themselves. They can be tasks, quotas, improvements in KPIs, or other performance-based benchmarks used to measure marketing success. When explicitly set, measurable goals are key for marketers to be successful.

The following is a list of marketing goals:

  1. Increasing brand awareness
  2. Generating a large number of qualified leads
  3. Thinking strategically
  4. Revenue generation attributed to marketing activities
  5. Engaging consumers with brands


Setting Marketing Goals and Measuring Them

To measure your success, set key performance indicators that provide metrics to evaluate success factors. This will allow you to track your progress and be encouraged by your successes.

Customizing your Google Analytics is easy! It only takes a few minutes to set up custom goals for your business. We can help you track how each marketing campaign or piece of content contributed to these goals. Tracking this information empowers you with the right data to prove and improve your marketing strategy.

Section 4: Why Should You Create a Goal-Based Marketing Plan?

Have you made your goals for inbound marketing? If not, it’s time to get serious. Once you set goals, you can start measuring the success of every effort you put in.

Marketing goals are essential for any business to achieve success. To get buy-in from the team and figure out the metrics needed for success, you need to align marketing goals with business goals.

SMART goals are the perfect way to go about achieving success. With them, you and your team will know exactly what you’re working towards, with no questions. Learn More.

It’s important to know what a good goal looks like before you can judge poorly defined goals.

Examples of poorly defined marketing goals:

In the following examples, we need to do more work on marketing goals:

  • I intend to increase traffic, sales and leads to my website.
  • Increasing my email list is important to me.
  • Google is the most important search engine to me.

You can never have enough leads. You might need 10 more, 100 more, or even thousands more. Once you figure out how many contacts you want on your mailing list, and what you want to rank number one in Google for, the lead generation process will be a lot easier.

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Examples of marketing goals with clear objectives:

We’ve got you covered! Below are the same goals turned into well-defined marketing goals. (These marketing goals are based on the overall goals of the business’s needs.)

  • Our inbound marketing efforts need to produce 20,000 visitors, 500 leads, and 12 customers within the next 12-months to achieve our revenue goal of $600,000.
  • We want to make sure that you are receiving the best service! We would like to generate 2 new customers from our current client list by email marketing. All qualified leads will be added to our mailing list so that we can keep them warm for future sales.
  • Want to rank number one for the keyword term “widget consultant”? Then give us a call! We estimate that 300 visitors will come to your website per month.

Section 5: Tools to Help You Decide Your Goals

Everyone knows New Year’s Eve is the time for making resolutions. But the real test comes the next day, when we’re faced with our resolutions and wonder how we’ll ever keep them. That’s why we’ve found these six apps and tools that will help you to set and track your goals.

Setting resolutions for the new year is easy, but keeping them can be quite the challenge. Luckily, there are some great tools to help you do just that—whether it’s in your personal life or professional one. Six members of the Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) share their favorites below.

1. Giant Post-it Notes


I’ve found that at office supply stores, you can purchase long sheets of bright-colored Post-It notes. I’ve tweaked them to post up on the walls in my office. They’re perfect for tracking contracts closed, income goals, social reach, and web traffic. You don’t even need a pen!– Kelly Azevedo, She’s Got Systems

2. Way of Life App


Way of Life is a mobile app that provides you with an intuitive way to keep up with your daily tasks. With 25 individual goals, you can track your progress and set major, big-picture goals for the future.– Brittany Hodak, ZinePak.

3. Google Drive


One of the best ways to stay motivated is to create some tangible goals that you can work towards. Every year, my friend and I get out of New York City and spend an entire weekend writing out our goals for the next 10 years, five years, and one year in a shared folder on Google Drive. We break the one-year goals down into quarterly, monthly.– Mark Krassner, Knee Walker Central.

4. Asana


We’ve been using Asana for the past few years and have decided that it’s the best project management system for us. We have tried Trello, but have always come back to Asana in the end. For teams of less than 30 people, we love that it’s free and flexible enough to be used for many different purposes.–Andrew Hoeft, Pinpoint Software, Inc.

5. AnyDo


The less on my list, the closer I am to reaching all the goals I have. That’s why AnyDo is so important for me – it’s a simple, elegant task manager with powerful features that helps me focus on what matters. – Ben Lang, Mapme.

6. Wunderlist


Wunderlist is the solution for those who feel like there’s never enough time to get everything done. It’s great for helping you reach your goals, and it’s even better when you can collaborate with others.– Brock Steckman, DivvyHQ.

Section 6: How Can You Measure Your Progress?

As entrepreneurs, we know how important it is to see what’s working and what isn’t. Business is unpredictable, and the only thing that you can count on is that everything changes. You need to constantly measure your business performance so you know what’s successful and what isn’t. So, how do you measure small business success?

I’ve been testing new ideas at my company for over 30 years, and I’ve learned a lot about the process of being an entrepreneur. It’s a journey, and you can never really finish. My best advice is to just take it one step at a time.

Nobody has ever done it before, but that doesn’t mean you can’t. Be prepared to measure your business so that you can gauge your achievements and milestones.

Measuring the performance of your business

If you’re looking to measure your business success, I’m here to tell you that there are many ways. Make sure you have a plan in place before you start so you can track it all.

1. Review the Financial Statements of Your Company

One of the first things you need to measure as a small business owner is how much money you make. Money is important to ensure your business remains successful. With it, you can grow your business and continue pursuing your entrepreneurial dream. How much money is going in and out of your business?

The three main financial statements to keep track of in your small business are the income statement, balance sheet, and cash flow statement. Keep reading and we’ll explain what they are and how to use them.

The three statements of financial reports will help you monitor your business’ profitability and cash flow. The income statement measures the profitability of your business during a certain period by showing your business’s profits and losses. The balance sheet shows how much you own and owe. And, the cash flow statement shows how liquid cash is at your business. You can use these three statements to

To measure business performance, first look at the money flow. Check out the financial statements to see how profitable your business is and learn how it can be improved.

2. Verify that Customers are Satisfied

Customer satisfaction is one of the most important factors in small business success. If your customers are dissatisfied after buying from you, they probably won’t come back.

What’s your measuring stick for customer satisfaction? There are a few different ways, but one of the best is when you ask if they found everything they were looking for.

Patriot is all about excellent customer satisfaction. We pride ourselves on reviews and making sure that our customers are happy with the software we provide. When we receive reviews, we post them on our company website. That way, others know what real people have to say about our products.

We give our customers a voice and we listen to them. That’s why we offer lifetime updates and bug fixes for all of our products.

3. Count the Number of New Clients you Gain on Average

Getting the number of new customers is a great way to measure your success and predict growth. If your business is stagnant with the same 25 customers, it might be time to re-evaluate your marketing strategy.

Now you can see if the people buying from your business are existing customers and track them with email addresses. That way, you can count the number of new customers that contact your business each month or year.

Keep track of your new customers by averaging them. This way, you can measure how successful your business is at drawing in new people.

4. Evaluate the Performance of Employees

Let’s not forget about your employees. They are essential to your business, and without them, you would have a hard time running and growing your business. One way to measure the success of your company is by conducting performance reviews to see how they’re doing.

Performance reviews are an important tool for creating a happy, healthy workplace. They give employees insight into their performance and lets managers see where employees are struggling. Those reviews also help determine what improvements need to be made to the workflow!

That’s why performance reviews are so important. You can use them to identify any issues your workers may have and then delegate more tasks to them to make them happier. Without increasing the number of employees on the payroll, you’ll be boosting workplace productivity!

If you want to see your competitor’s sales numbers, all you need is the app. You can also use it to monitor your sales, which is important for making sure that you’re on point with your market.

If your business’s profitability decreases and it looks like you’re dealing with a tough time, don’t be down. It could be a result of the national market and out of your control. Decreased profitability could be a good time to introduce new products if demand for your current product or service is put on hold.

6. Identify Your Expectations

If you’re a small business owner, you may be experiencing some success. That’s great! According to one study, 55% of small business owners are satisfied with being a small business owner and 35% felt it was the perfect fit for them. Keep up the good work!

If you’re not happy, you’re not successful. It might not seem important, but assessing your happiness is a crucial factor when measuring your business success.

When you measure your business’s success, consider your perception. How do you feel the business is doing? Do you know the numbers are good but are they where you want them to be? Make sure you’re happy with your progress to encourage all-around success.

Section 7: Conclusion

Your goals will not be perfect without any Entrepreneur Canvas. Don’t waste hours upon hours tweaking numbers and sharing with others on the team to get their thoughts. What you should do is get accurate data about previous periods, define the capabilities of your team by the Entrepreneur Canvas, and make smart decisions on where you want to go with your marketing. Then, GET STARTED!

If you build your strategy around these goals and take a step back after a quarter, adjusting them (whether you are overshot or undershot) won’t be seen as negative. It’s necessary to keep moving forward.

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Posted by Elena Hudgens
Elena Hudgens is an entrepreneur with 10+ years of experience. She started her journey by building her own e-commerce website on Shopify and turned her $1000 savings to millions in just 2 years. Soon she started different ventures in which she failed and succeeded. And now, she's on a mission to help other entrepreneurs with her life and business lessons.

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