How to Write a Business Plan for your Children’s Indoor Playground Business
Starting a family entertainment center is a great way to make a living, quite literally, off happiness and play! However, while this is definitely a great way to earn a living, it’s still a business. So you need to have a plan in place before you get started. Here are a few things your indoor playscape business plan should cover.
Know the Legalities
The first thing you need to know when you’re creating a business plan for a family entertainment center is what the legal structure of the business will be. Consider what the structure of the business will be, and how many people will be partners or owners of the company.
Make sure you are also well educated about permits and zoning for your city, so that when you start looking for premises for your custom indoor playground, you know where to look and what documentation you will need to have in place.
This also includes knowing what the regulations for businesses like these are in terms of safety and insurance. Even if your play space is completely safe, there’s always a liability issue, and most cities will require you to carry specific insurance, have certain first aid supplies and skills on site and have a fixed number of employees. Everything from fire codes to parking regulations could come into play here, so make sure you do your homework carefully.
Know Your Market
The next important thing to consider is what the market is like. Succeeding in the family entertainment center business is about more than just renting a space and installing commercial indoor playground equipment.
You need to know how many families live in your area, how many kids of the age group you are targeting there are, and what the socio economic situation in the area is. This will have a huge impact on every aspect of your business, so the more time you can spend gathering detailed demographic information, the better.
Know the Competition
The next important part of your family entertainment center business plan is what kind of competition you have in the area. This should be direct and indirect competition.
Direct competition would be businesses that also offer an indoor playscape, whether it’s paid or not.
Indirect competition would be other family friendly activities that might attract your clients. This could be things like bowling alleys, outdoor playgrounds, a zoo or farmyard or a theme park. Anything that families might decide to do instead of visiting your business is potential competition.
Knowing your competition also allows you to see what families are willing to pay for a day at one of those attractions, which will help you to set your prices.
Your family entertainment center will only be as good as the equipment you have. So start looking for custom indoor play structures early. Look for a company that offers commercial playground equipment, because it will take a lot of wear and tear from the kids and look for out of the box options.
Families like to visit play spaces that are interesting and unique, and the more interesting yours is, the more popular it will be.
Know Your Costs
Next, you need to consider what it will cost to set up your indoor playscape and family entertainment center, and what it will cost to run it.
Setup costs could include registering a corporation, purchasing commercial indoor playground equipment, buying signage, painting and decorating the space, buying tables and chairs for families and so on.
Running costs would include things like salaries and wages, utilities, office supplies and so on.
Consider Complementary Business Ideas
If you’re starting a family entertainment center, you might want to add other income streams besides just the custom indoor playground.
Some ideas might include food sales, pool tables, arcade game machines and similar. All of those will have an impact on your startup and running costs, potential profits, licensing and layout, among other things. So make sure you factor any complementary business ideas into all of the other sections of your plan too.
Create a Marketing Plan
“If you build it, they will come” only works in the movies.
If you want your family entertainment center to be a success, you need to make sure people know it is there. Ideally, this will start with a location that is visible to passing traffic. The more people who see your entertainment center, the more people will want to visit.
Next, consider social media and your website, both of which are great for local advertising. You could consider offering opening day discount coupons to schools in the area, who could, in turn, pass them on to families of children that attend. Or have a special birthday package deal.
Local newspapers might be willing to cover your opening day as a local interest story, and you could also try local radio ads. The more people who know your indoor playscape is opening, the more likely you are to launch with a bang.
Set Your Pricing
Once you know what it will cost to start and run your business, and what your competition is charging, you can start setting your price. Make sure that it is high enough to cover your costs, but not so high you price yourself out of the market.
At this stage, you can also calculate how many visitors you will need to break even and make a profit, so you can start planning how to attract them.
Choose the Right Playground Partner
If you’re just staring out in the family entertainment center business, partnering with the right commercial indoor playground equipment company is a big deal. Indoor Playgrounds International has been supplying indoor playground equipment to the best play spaces for many years, so we can help you to make the right choices to make your new venture a great success.
Our custom commercial indoor playground equipment is fun and imaginative, and also built to the very highest quality standards. So you know it will be fun, and also safe and durable.