There are three main steps that you will have to follow if you are hoping to seek a successful grant. First of all, you must be able to properly identify potential grant makers who might be interested in supporting your business project. You should use the various different websites out there in order to hunt down the perfect grant for you.
If you need any additional reference materials, you might wish to consult other publications in the Grants information database or contact the nearest Foundation Center Library near you for some assistance, which might contain reference books on private foundations in your region as well as basic information on government and corporate grants. Obviously, you can also call the Foundation Center at 1-800-424-9836 for the location of the collection which is closest to you.
Secondly, after you have found and located your list of potential prospects, you should try to contact all of the key people who can help you plan your proposal before you start to write it in the first place. What this really implies is that you must do your homework carefully if you would like it to be successful. A sure method to not obtain your grant is to write a proposal without contacting the right people who are able to maximize your potential for success.
Once you have qualified your prospects and planned an effective approach, you must try to produce a carefully written, very well thought out proposal. Some grant proposals tend to be rejected because they contain bad ideas; nevertheless the most common reason why grant proposals are rejected, is because they tend to contain good ideas that are nevertheless very badly written. There are basically two kinds of grant proposals which are: long proposals that you write to government agencies, and shorter letter proposals that are generally attributed to private sponsors. Try to gain knowledge of who you are talking to and what they might expect.
Try to make a special effort in order to check out the website of the place that you plan to apply to just in order to make sure that all of the facts that you have about the process are concise and correct. Your business plan and your proposal will be the key points in getting the correct funding for your business. It will also be a good idea to build a great marketing strategy, and financial forecast estimate. The more information that you provide then the more prepared they will think you are and the higher your chances for success will be.
Some of the eligible businesses for a grant are: non-profits, self help business groups, anything to do with the arts such as publishers or galleries, magazines etc. and businesses which might be hoping to be the sole provider in a specific locale.
You can also get business start up money if you are able to give an outstanding proposal. Sometimes the government grants will be awarded to people with a great proposal even if they are not necessarily regulated under the arts or beneficial to the community at large. If this is what you are working with, then you are as good as accepted.