Any business startup needs its business plan. A business plan helps to plan all activities, costs and revenues, and it should be developed carefully. This paper will provide a description, market analysis, and business plan for Your Doctor – a new mobile application venture that can be used to call a doctor home throughout the United States.
The Name and Description of Business
My business is called Your Doctor. The idea is to offer a mobile application that is used to call a doctor home. The purpose of this application is to provide convenience in healthcare for people who need to visit a doctor immediately, but do not have time or do not want to go to clinic or hospital. Thus, they will be able to use special mobile application to call a doctor, and a doctor will visit them at home within several hours. The payment will be made by card or by cash directly to a doctor. The mission of this idea is to provide high-quality healthcare services at home where and when it is convenient for patients. The vision for the nearest future is to popularize our service and spread it to more and more locations in the United States, and if reasonable, even abroad. To provide our services, we will sign contracts with doctors of different specializations. They will be freelancers and will drive to patients when they are called for. They will be informed about a call immediately via phone or the Internet, and they will use a car to get to patients. My business will meet a need for high-quality healthcare services that can be provided at home without visiting healthcare organizations. I believe that this strategy is worth pursuing, because such services are growing in their popularity, and we are likely to find many customers. In particular, healthcare spending is growing in the United States, and expenses are rising in various healthcare spheres (Rosin, 2016). Thus, our services are likely to be more and more popular. Another tendency that contributes to our business idea is the growing popularity of doctor house calls. More and more Americans use them, because it is more convenient than going to hospital or clinic (Karlamangla, 2016). IT services are increasing its popularity in healthcare as well; for instance, global healthcare IT market had a value of $41.2 billion in 2013 (Grand View Research, 2015). Thus, our application has good opportunities for development, because it is a part of IT services in healthcare sphere. Moreover, mobile applications are becoming popular from year to year. In 2014, 138 billion applications were downloaded worldwide, and this figure increased to 179 billion in 2015. The number of downloaded applications is expected to reach 224 billion in 2016 and 268 billion in 2017 (Statista, 2016). Indeed, market conditions are favorable for the development of our application.
Our application will be available in multiple locations, and in each place, particular doctors will work. It is better to start offering services in large cities, because finding doctors who will work for us will be easier there. Moreover, in large cities, the number of potential customers is higher.
Our target market will include customers from 18 to 45 years old, since people of this age group are usually busy: they study or work and many of them have families. Thus, they often do not have enough time to visit a doctor, and home calls for a doctor may be convenient for them. In addition, they will be likely to call for a doctor for their kids, if they have them. It is hard to determine the size of the market, because we do not know yet in what cities the application will be available. However, the target market is likely to be large, because the shares of people of target ages are reasonable in the U.S. population. In particular, the share of people from 20 to 24 years old is 6.7%, from 25 to 34 years old is 14.2%, and from 35 to 44 years old is 16% (Infoplease, 2016). Our competitors are other applications that are used to call for a doctor, such as Doctor on Demand, FirstLine, Heal, Pager and some others (Bolluyt, 2016). The main advantage over the competitive products is that our application will be available in multiple locations, and most of our competitive applications are available only in several cities. In order to bring our product to customers, we will focus on promotion via the Internet and social networks, because it is cheap and allows reaching many potential customers.
- Convenient medical services and quick arrival of a doctor to home
- Reasonable prices compared to most competitors
- Availability in many locations throughout the United States
- As the service is new and quite innovative, customers may not trust it.
- The costs to develop application and attract good doctors are high.
- If our service gets popular, it will be offered in more locations throughout the United States, and it will be possible to open it abroad as well.
- As the prices for our services will be relatively low, we will be able to increase market share in relation to our competitors.
- The service may fail if consumers do not trust it, because it is new.
- There is a risk of being unprofitable, because the costs to maintain application and hire doctors are high, and they may not be covered with revenues.
The largest cost is application development. It is hard to determine how much it will cost, but it is better to try to make the application not very expensive, thus, according to average prices for application development, $200,000 will be enough (Formotus, 2016). We will hire professional application developers in order to develop our application. We will not have employees in the beginning, and we will promote the application ourselves. It is also planned to spend $50,000 on promotion and finding doctors who will be willing to work for our service. It is likely that the process of development and first promotion of our application will take about two-three months. Our revenues will be generated from application downloads ($2 each) and revenues from calling doctors. One doctor visit will approximately cost $100. Of that money, a doctor will receive $50, and the rest will be used for production and paying other costs, taxes, and used to invest in the further development.
Requests for Proposal (RFP)
All requests will be provided to doctors who work in the local area, and they will be offered to sign a contract and to work for Your Doctor. The requests will include description of the service, conditions and benefits to work for it. In order to choose potential doctors for work for us, it will be possible to study patient feedbacks in social networks or special medical websites.
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Risks and Uncertainties
The proposal is quite risky, because calling for a doctor via an application may seem too strange and risky for customers, especially for older people. Moreover, they may not trust such doctors. In order to cope with this uncertainty, our doctors will be provided with all required legal documents. When they arrive, they will show a patient their documents that prove their education and work experience. Moreover, they will also demonstrate documents showing that they work for our company. The second risk is that we will not have enough doctors to arrive to patients immediately. As doctors will be a kind of freelancers, they will work in other healthcare organizations, and work for our firm for additional income. In order to cope with this risk and enable in-time arrival of doctor, we will have several doctors of the same specialization, and they will have different timetables to be always available. To enable quick arrival, doctors will use their cars or the cars of our firm. Gasoline price will be compensated to them if they use their own cars.
The target market includes people from 18 to 45 years old with medium income level. In order to reach them, we will promote our application in the Internet and social networks. Pricing strategy will be aimed to make prices lower compared to the main competitors. The application will be sold in App Store and Google Play, and it will cost $2 to download. It is planned to spend $50,000 on promotion and finding doctors who will be willing to work for our service. Our business will offer a unique value proposition and be able to sustain a competitive advantage in the market due to low prices and high quality of services.
All costs related to opening the business were described above. During the first year, we plan to have a revenue of $10,000 from application downloads (5,000 downloads) and $1,000,000 from calls (10,000 calls totally). We hope that the business will be successful due to low costs and advantages that it has in comparison to competitors.
Your Doctor is an innovative business that provides an option of calling a doctor home via the mobile application. Its main benefits over competitors include low prices, experienced doctors, and availability in multiple locations. Due to such benefits, Your Doctor is likely to succeed.