Writing a successful grant request will help you find funds your business needs

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A plan, proposal, and timeline will help you submit a winning application.

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Business owners can use grant funding to develop a new product or service, reach a new group of customers, or navigate a challenging economic environment. 

Competing for grant funding is not as stressful as pitching to venture capitalists, but the process is more complicated. 

SEE: Grant writing guide (TechRepublic Premium)

Seeking and winning grant funding is an investment of time and effort. The applications process has become much more competitive over the last five years as funding from other sources has evaporated. To be successful, you'llneed time, a team, and a plan to submit a winning application. 

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The Grant writing guide from TechRepublic Premium will help you find a grant that fits your idea, build a team to help you compile a proposal, and set a timeline to meet the application deadline.

How to submit a winning application

The submission process is different for every grant program. At minimum, you'll need a project proposal, a budget for the project, and supporting materials, such as tax documents and incorporation papers. Some funders also require these items:

  • Letters of reference
  • Operating budgets from previous years
  • Incorporation papers

SEE: Grant writing guide (TechRepublic Premium)

The first step is to find a grant program that fits your idea. If your proposal feels like a stretch when you read the eligibility guidelines, it probably is. Some funders have geographic limitations or specific funding goals. If your idea is not a good fit for a particular grant, keep looking.

The Grant writing guide will help you pick the right funder and plan your application process. It also includes ideas for assembling a team and suggestions for setting a timeline, as well as  offering tips to help you set a realistic scope for your proposal. If you promise to solve world hunger, grant reviewers will dismiss your application quickly. If your project is too small, it looks like you don't want to spend your own money on the work.  

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