Are you an ambitious business owner looking for startup financing? Running a business is no cake walk, but getting it off of the ground initially is probably one of the most challenging things a person can do. Often, business financing makes the difference between the companies that experience success and those that never begin to enjoy their true potential. Although securing that loan or financing agreement can feel like an impossible task at times, there are a few ways that you can increase your chances of getting the support that you need to get your business moving.

Think of the loan application process like a job interview. The basic idea is helping the lender across the desk understand just how promising your business is, and why they don’t want to go with the other guy. Knowing everything that there is to know about your business plan demonstrates your personal dedication to making your company succeed, but also makes it clear that you are confident in the plan you’re selling. In addition to knowing your business plan inside-out, you need to show good faith in your company by investing in it personally. You wouldn’t trust a chef that refused to eat their own food, and a bank is unlikely to feel comfortable offering business financing when you feel uncertain about making a personal investment in support of your own professional endeavors.

What does your business plan include? Does it account for the cost of labor? Does it stretch into the foreseeable future to add credence to your claims that your business has real potential? Have you accounted for seasonal business shifts? Putting together a set of financial projections that give your startup financing entity an idea of what they might be able to expect could put many concerns to rest.

One of the most important parts of securing business financing is to sell the future success to the individual who has the power to approve or deny your loan. Explain your business plan, both short and long term, with confidence, and always strive to direct the focus to success. A lender will seek to offer financing to those business owners who know that success is imminent.

Finally, be realistic about your business financing needs. A lender who can tell that you have taken a lot of time to put a sensible business plan together, and can back up your confident presentation with your own financial investment may be prepared to offer more to support your efforts than you originally anticipated. By having a clear view of the amount that you need to turn the loan into success, you can finish up the loan application with the same voice of confidence that you started with, and ensure that you don’t get in over your head.