A sign language business is a type of business that specializes in providing services related to sign language. Sign language is a visual-gestural language used primarily by deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals to communicate.
Sign language consulting businesses provide expertise and guidance in matters related to sign language. They may work with organizations to develop policies and practices that accommodate deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals, including providing sign language interpreters, creating accessible videos with sign language interpretation, and ensuring compliance with accessibility regulations.
Some sign language businesses focus on organizing events and services that celebrate deaf culture and provide opportunities for deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals to connect and interact. This may include cultural festivals, workshops, social gatherings, and community outreach programs.
Steps on How to Write a Sign Language Business Plan
Bernard Billson® Sign Language Company, Inc. is a leading sign language business based in Rochester, New York. Our company is dedicated to providing high-quality sign language interpretation services and fostering inclusivity for the deaf and hard-of-hearing community.
We have established ourselves as a trusted provider of sign language solutions, serving a diverse range of clients and industries.
Located in Rochester, a city known for its vibrant deaf community, we actively engage with local organizations and events. This involvement allows us to build strong relationships, gain insights into community needs, and provide tailored services that address specific requirements.
Bernard Billson® Sign Language Company, Inc. embraces technological advancements in the field of sign language interpretation.
We leverage cutting-edge video conferencing tools, remote interpreting platforms, and educational resources to enhance the accessibility and convenience of our services. Bernard Billson is the founder and CEO of Bernard Billson® Sign Language Company, Inc.
a. Our Products and Services
Sign Language Interpretation: We offer professional sign language interpretation services for various settings, including conferences, meetings, medical appointments, legal proceedings, educational institutions, and more.
Sign Language Training and Education: We provide comprehensive sign language training and education programs for individuals who wish to learn sign language.
Accessibility Consulting: At Bernard Billson®, we offer accessibility consulting services to organizations seeking to create inclusive environments for the deaf and hard of hearing.
b. Nature of the Business
Our sign language company will operate both a business-to-consumer business model and a business-to-business business model.
c. The Industry
Bernard Billson® Sign Language Company, Inc. will operate in the language services industry or the communication and interpreting Industry.
d. Mission Statement
At Bernard Billson® Sign Language Company, Inc., our mission is to bridge the communication gap and promote inclusivity by providing exceptional sign language services. We are dedicated to facilitating effective communication between deaf or hard-of-hearing individuals and the broader community.
Through our professional sign language interpretation, education, and accessibility consulting services, we strive to empower individuals, organizations, and communities to embrace diversity and create an inclusive society where everyone can communicate and thrive.
e. Vision Statement
Our vision at Bernard Billson® Sign Language Company, Inc. is to be a leader in the sign language industry, recognized for our commitment to excellence, accessibility, and innovation. We envision a future where sign language is widely understood and respected, and where deaf or hard-of-hearing individuals have equal opportunities to engage, participate, and contribute to all aspects of society.
f. Our Tagline (Slogan)
Bernard Billson® Sign Language Company, Inc. – “Connecting through Sign, Empowering through Communication”
g. Legal Structure of the Business (LLC, C Corp, S Corp, LLP)
Bernard Billson® Sign Language Company, Inc. will be formed as a Limited Liability Company (LLC).
h. Our Organizational Structure
- Sign Language Education Coordinator (Owner)
- Sign Language Interpreters and Instructors
- Accessibility Consultant
- Administrative Assistant
- Client Relationship Manager.
i. Ownership / Shareholder Structure and Board Members
- Bernard Billson (Owner and Chairman/Chief Executive Officer) 52 Percent Shares
- Annie Welbourn (Board Member) 18 Percent Shares
- Grace Hulk (Board Member) 10 Percent Shares
- Kelvin Bright (Board Member) 10 Percent Shares
- Cathy Benson (Board Member and Secretary) 10 Percent Shares.
- Bernard Billson® Sign Language Company, Inc. has built a strong reputation as a reliable and trusted provider of sign language services, earning the trust of clients and the deaf community.
- The company maintains a team of highly skilled and certified sign language interpreters who bring expertise, professionalism, and accuracy to their assignments.
- The company is committed to promoting accessibility and advocating for the rights of the deaf and hard-of-hearing community, positioning itself as a leader in fostering inclusive communication.
- Located in Rochester, New York, the company actively engages with the local deaf community and organizations, allowing for valuable insights, partnerships, and tailored services.
- Bernard Billson® Sign Language Company, Inc. embraces technological advancements in the field, leveraging tools, platforms, and resources to enhance accessibility, convenience, and service quality.
- The company’s operations may be limited to a specific geographic area, potentially limiting its reach and expansion opportunities beyond its current location.
- The company heavily relies on the availability and capacity of qualified interpreters, which may pose challenges in managing interpreter schedules and meeting client demands during peak periods.
- The sign language industry is competitive, and the company may face competition from established providers and emerging players in the market.
- While the company excels in sign language interpretation and education, its range of services may be limited compared to larger language service providers that offer a broader spectrum of language solutions.
- The increasing awareness and legal requirements for accessibility create opportunities for expansion in the sign language industry.
- The company can explore diversifying its service offerings by providing related services such as captioning, video remote interpreting, and accessibility consulting to cater to broader client needs.
- Collaborating with educational institutions, healthcare providers, government agencies, and other organizations can open doors to new clients, contracts, and mutually beneficial partnerships.
- Leveraging emerging technologies, such as machine learning for sign language translation or video conferencing advancements, can enhance service delivery, improve efficiency, and expand the company’s capabilities.
i. How Big is the Industry?
The sign language industry is considered a big industry and according to a report by Common Sense Advisory, the global language services market was valued at approximately $53.45 billion in 2020 and is expected to reach $70.68 billion by 2024, growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7.4%.
ii. Is the Industry Growing or Declining?
The sign language industry is generally considered to be growing rather than declining. While there may be challenges and regional variations within the sign language industry, the overall trend is toward growth and increased demand for sign language services.
The industry’s expansion is driven by societal shifts towards inclusivity, legal requirements, technological advancements, and a greater appreciation for effective communication with the deaf and hard-of-hearing community.
iii. What are the Future Trends in the Industry?
Technology will continue to play a crucial role in the sign language industry. Advancements in video conferencing, artificial intelligence, and machine learning are expected to enhance the quality and accessibility of sign language services.
For example, real-time sign language translation tools and automatic captioning for sign language videos may become more sophisticated and widely available.
The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the adoption of remote interpreting, and this trend is likely to continue in the future. Video remote interpreting (VRI) and other remote communication platforms enable convenient access to sign language interpretation services from anywhere, expanding the reach and reducing geographical limitations.
Online platforms for sign language learning and education have gained popularity and will likely continue to grow. Virtual classrooms, interactive learning modules, and mobile applications provide flexibility and convenience for individuals seeking to learn sign language.
iv. Are There Existing Niches in the Industry?
Yes, there are existing niche ideas when it comes to sign language business and some of them are:
- Sign Language Interpretation Services
- Sign Language Training and Education
- Sign Language Consulting
- Sign Language Products and Resources
- Deaf Cultural Events and Services.
v. Can You Sell a Franchise of Your Business in the Future?
Bernard Billson® Sign Language Company, Inc. has plans to sell franchises in the nearest future and we will target major cities with high populations of deaf and dumb people in the United States of America.
- Changes in accessibility regulations and requirements may impact the company’s operations and necessitate adaptations to ensure compliance.
- The sign language industry may witness increased competition from new entrants and existing providers, potentially impacting market share and client acquisition.
- Economic downturns or fluctuations could impact the demand for sign language services, particularly in sectors heavily affected by economic conditions.
- Rapid advancements in technology may bring both opportunities and threats, as new solutions could potentially disrupt traditional interpretation services or create challenges in keeping up with emerging tools and platforms.
i. Who are the Major Competitors?
- Purple Communications, Inc.
- Sorenson Communications, LLC
- ASL Services Holdings, LLC
- Sign Language Interpreting Professionals (SLIP)
- Interpreters and Translators, Inc. (ITI)
- Accessible Communication for the Deaf (ACD)
- Hands On Services, Inc.
- ZVRS (Z Video Relay Service)
- SignTalk Foundation, Inc.
- Deaf Access Solutions
- Language People, Inc.
- Deaf Interpreting Services, Inc.
- Visual Language Interpreting (VLI)
- Sign Language USA, LLC
- InDemand Interpreting
- Certified Interpreting Services, Inc.
- Bridge Communications
- CSD (Communication Service for the Deaf)
- Hands In Motion, LLC.
ii. Is There a Franchise for Sign Language Business?
Yes, there are franchise opportunities for sign language business, and they are:
- LanguageLine Solutions
- Transworld Business Advisors
- United Franchise Group
- Language Trainers
- Helen Doron Educational Group.
iii. Are There Policies, Regulations, or Zoning Laws Affecting Sign Language Business?
Policies, regulations, and zoning laws affecting sign language businesses in the United States can vary at the federal, state, and local levels.
But generally, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a federal law that prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities, including the deaf and hard of hearing. It requires businesses and organizations to provide reasonable accommodations, which may include sign language interpretation services, to ensure effective communication for individuals with hearing impairments.
Please note that some states and local jurisdictions may have specific regulations regarding sign language interpretation services.
These regulations can pertain to qualifications and certification requirements for interpreters, reimbursement rates for services, and the provision of interpreter services in certain settings such as healthcare facilities, courts, and educational institutions.
It is important to note that the sign language industry has professional associations, such as the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID), that establish ethical guidelines, standards of practice, and certification programs for interpreters. Compliance with these professional standards can be important for sign language businesses in terms of hiring qualified interpreters and maintaining ethical practices.
a. Who is Your Target Audience?
i. Age Range: The target audience can span various age ranges, including children, teenagers, adults, and seniors.
ii. Level of Education
The target audience’s level of education can vary, ranging from individuals with limited formal education to highly educated individuals.
iii. Income Level
The target audience’s income level can vary widely, as sign language services cater to individuals from various socioeconomic backgrounds.
iv. Ethnicity: The target audience for sign language services is not limited to any specific ethnicity or racial group.
Sign language services primarily cater to individuals who use sign language as their primary or preferred mode of communication.
vi. Geographical Location
The target audience’s geographical location can vary depending on the service area and reach of Bernard Billson® Sign Language Company, Inc.
Our target audience’s lifestyle will encompass a range of individuals, including those who are part of the deaf community, individuals working in professions that require sign language interpretation services (such as healthcare, legal, and education), and those who are passionate about promoting accessibility and inclusive communication.
b. Advertising and Promotion Strategies
- Build Relationships with players in the education industry.
- Deliberately Brand All Our Vehicles.
- Develop Your Business Directory Profiles
- Tap Into Text Marketing
- Make Use of Bill Boards.
- Share Your Events in Local Groups and Pages.
- Turn Your Social Media Channels into a Resource
i. Traditional Marketing Strategies
- Marketing through Direct Mail.
- Print Media Marketing – Newspapers & Magazines.
- Broadcast Marketing -Television & Radio Channels.
- Out-of-Home” marketing (OOH marketing) – Public Transits like Buses and Trains, Billboards, Street shows, and Cabs.
- Leverage direct sales, direct mail (postcards, brochures, letters, fliers), tradeshows, print advertising (magazines, newspapers, coupon books, billboards), referral (also known as word-of-mouth marketing), radio, and television.
ii. Digital Marketing Strategies
- Social Media Marketing Platforms.
- Influencer Marketing.
- Email Marketing.
- Content Marketing.
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Marketing.
- Affiliate Marketing
- Mobile Marketing.
iii. Social Media Marketing Plan
- Start using chatbots.
- Create a personalized experience for our customers.
- Create an efficient content marketing strategy.
- Create a community for our target market and potential target market.
- Gear up our profiles with a diverse content strategy.
- Use brand advocates.
- Create profiles on relevant social media channels.
- Run cross-channel campaigns.
c. Pricing Strategy
When working out our pricing strategy, Bernard Billson® Sign Language Company, Inc. will make sure it covers profits, insurance, premium, license, and economy or value and full package. In all our pricing strategy will reflect.
- Penetration Pricing
- Cost-Based Pricing
- Value-Based Pricing
- Competition-Based Pricing.
Sales and Distribution Plan
a. Sales Channels
Bernard Billson® Sign Language Company, Inc. will utilize various sales channels to reach its target audience and generate revenue. Here are some potential sales channels for the company:
- Direct Sales
- Online Presence
- Referrals and Word-of-Mouth
- Partnerships and Collaborations
- Industry Conferences and Trade Shows
- Social Media and Online Advertising
- Collaborative Online Platforms
- Educational Partnerships
- Government Contracts and Grants.
b. Inventory Strategy
Building and maintaining a comprehensive database of qualified sign language interpreters is essential for our type of business.
This database would include information about their skills, certifications, experience, and availability. Regularly updating and expanding this database will ensure the company has a pool of interpreters to meet client demands efficiently.
We will maintain a library of training materials, including textbooks, workbooks, instructional videos, and other educational resources. Monitoring the condition, availability, and functionality of these resources is crucial to ensure smooth operations.
c. Payment Options for Customers
- Bank Transfers
- Credit or Debit Card
- Electronic Payment Systems such as PayPal or Venmo
d. Return Policy, Incentives, and Guarantees
- Bernard Billson® Sign Language Company, Inc. will offer a satisfaction guarantee for its interpreter services. If a client is not satisfied with the quality or performance of an interpreter, the company can provide a replacement interpreter at no additional cost or offer a refund for that specific service.
- Loyalty Programs
- Referral Rewards
- Special Promotions and Discounts
- Qualified Interpreters Guarantee
- Confidentiality and Privacy Guarantee
- On-Time Service Guarantee.
e. Customer Support Strategy
Customer support is a crucial aspect of any business, including Bernard Billson® Sign Language Company, Inc. Hence we will make sure to provide multiple channels for customers to reach out and seek support. This can include a dedicated customer support phone line, email address, and online chat option on the company’s website. Ensure that these channels are easily accessible and prominently displayed.
We will create a detailed Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) section on the company’s website that addresses common customer queries. This can help customers find answers to their questions quickly and reduce the need for direct support.
We will regularly evaluate and analyze customer support metrics, such as response times, customer satisfaction scores, and complaint resolution rates. Identify areas that require improvement and implement strategies to enhance the overall customer support experience.
Our operational plan will cover detail of the day-to-day operations of the business, including training, technology deployment, staffing, and customer service.
a. What Happens During a Typical Day at a Sign Language Business?
- The business opens for the day
- Scheduling and Coordination
- Interpreter Services
- Remote Interpretation
- Client Communication
- Administrative Tasks
- Interpreter Management
- Marketing and Business Development
- Continuing Education and Professional Development
- Industry Engagement.
- The business is closed for the day.
b. Production Process
There is no production process for a sign language business.
c. Service Procedure
The service procedure involves scheduling and coordinating tasks. This includes managing interpreter schedules, assigning interpreters to client appointments or events, and confirming appointments with clients. Coordinating logistics and ensuring interpreters have all the necessary information for each assignment are essential parts of this process.
Sign language businesses often provide on-site interpretation services for various settings such as medical appointments, legal proceedings, educational institutions, business meetings, conferences, and social events. Interpreters are dispatched to designated locations to facilitate communication between deaf or hard-of-hearing individuals and hearing individuals.
With the increasing use of technology, a sign language business may offer remote interpretation services. This involves providing sign language interpretation through video conferencing or video relay services (VRS).
Throughout the day, sign language businesses engage in communication with clients. This includes responding to inquiries, discussing service requirements, providing quotes, and addressing any concerns or questions. Maintaining regular contact and building strong relationships with clients is essential for client satisfaction and loyalty.
d. The Supply Chain
The supply chain for our sign language business involves coordinating with suppliers and distributors of sign language materials and learning resources. Good communication and planning are critical to managing the supply chain and ensuring that the business can meet customer demand.
e. Sources of Income
Bernard Billson® Sign Language Company, Inc. will make money from providing services related to sign language and selling a comprehensive range of sign language learning materials and resources.
a. Amount Needed to Start Your Sign Language Company?
Bernard Billson® Sign Language Company, Inc. would need an estimate of $120,000 successfully set up our sign language manufacturing company in the United States of America. Please note that this amount includes the salaries of all our staff for the first month of operation.
b. What are the Costs Involved?
- Business Registration Fees – $750.
- Legal expenses for obtaining licenses and permits – $1,300.
- Marketing, Branding, and Promotions – $3,000.
- Business Consultant Fee – $2,500.
- Insurance – $2,400.
- Rent/Lease – $55,000.
- Other start-up expenses including commercial satellite TV subscriptions, stationery ($500), and phone and utility deposits ($1,800).
- Operational Cost (salaries of employees, payments of bills et al) – $30,000
- Start-up Inventory – $25,000
- Store Equipment (cash register, security, ventilation, signage) – $1,750
- Furnishing and Equipping – $45,500
- Website: $600
- Opening party: $5,000
- Miscellaneous: $5,000
c. Do You Need to Build a Facility? If YES, How Much will it cost?
Bernard Billson® Sign Language Company, Inc. will not build a new facility for our sign language company; we intend to start with a long-term lease and after 8 years, we will start the process of acquiring our own shop facility in a centralized location in the city.
d. Ongoing Expenses for Running a Sign Language Company
- Sign language learning resources and materials.
- Labor costs
- Utilities (electricity, water, heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems necessary for running the production facility)
- Equipment maintenance
- Marketing and advertising
- Rent or mortgage
- Administrative and overhead costs such as office supplies, software licenses, professional services (legal, accounting), permits, licenses, and other overhead costs associated with running the business.
e. What is the Average Salary of your Staff?
- Sign Language Education Coordinator (Owner) -$65,000 Per Year
- Sign Language Interpreters and Instructors -$46,000 Per Year
- Accessibility Consultant -$42,000 Per Year
- Administrative Assistant -$38,000 Per Year
- Client Relationship Manager -$36,000 Per Year.
f. How Do You Get Funding to Start a Sign Language Business?
- Raising money from personal savings and sale of personal stocks and properties
- Raising money from investors and business partners
- Sell shares to interested investors
- Applying for a loan from your bank/banks
- Pitching your business idea and applying for business grants and seed funding from the government, donor organizations, and angel investors
- Source for soft loans from your family members and friends.
a. How Much Should You Charge for Your Product/Service?
The rates charged by sign language companies in the United States can vary depending on several factors, including the type of service, the duration of the assignment, the location, the qualifications and experience of the interpreter, and the specific requirements of the client.
Please note that many sign language companies charge an hourly rate for on-site interpretation services. Hourly rates can range from approximately $50 to $150 or more per hour, depending on the factors mentioned above. Rates tend to be higher for specialized fields such as legal or medical interpretation.
b. Sales Forecast?
- First Fiscal Year (FY1): $245,000
- Second Fiscal Year (FY2): $360,000
- Third Fiscal Year (FY3): $550,000
c. Estimated Profit You Will Make a Year?
- First Fiscal Year (FY1) (Profit After Tax): 20 percent
- Second Fiscal Year (FY2) (Profit After Tax): $25 percent
- Third Fiscal Year (FY3) (Profit After Tax): 30 percent
d. Profit Margin of a Sign Language Company Product/Service
The ideal profit margin we hope to make at Bernard Billson® Sign Language Company, Inc. will be between 15 and 35 percent.
a. How do you intend to grow and expand? By opening more retail outlets/offices or selling a Franchise?
Bernard Billson® Sign Language Company, Inc. will grow our sign language company by first opening other branches in key cities in the United States of America within the first five years of establishing the business and then will start selling franchises from the sixth year.
b. Where do you intend to expand to and why?
Bernard Billson® Sign Language Company, Inc. plans to expand to the following cities.
- Washington, D.C.
- Rochester, New York
- Austin, Texas
- Seattle, Washington
- Los Angeles, California
- Atlanta, Georgia
- Boston, Massachusetts
- Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
- Chicago, Illinois
- San Francisco, California.
The founder of Bernard Billson® Sign Language Company, Inc. plans to exit the business via family succession. We have positioned structures and processes in place that will help us achieve our plan of successfully transferring the business from one family member to another and from one generation to another without difficulties.
The company has successfully developed a detailed transition plan to smoothly hand over responsibilities to the new successor. This includes transferring ownership, training key personnel, and communicating with employees, customers, and suppliers about the change.