What is a Concept Note?

A concept note is usually a shortest form of proposal which is composed of a simple description of the main idea of a specific project along with the main goals and objectives to be achieved. It demonstrates the original idea, theme, or concept of a person who typically works in the field of literary arts, publishing, media and journalism. Commonly, many professionals, business firms, and organizations use a concept note for their work and projects in design, education, fashion and style, scientific research, health and medicine, news publishing and multimedia, and many other fields.

According to a study conducted by PMI, professionals and business owners need to establish clear project and business goals and vision in order to reach success because there exists a lack of clear goals, being the most common factor (37%), behind failures of several projects as stated by executive leaders in the industry.

So to prevent failures, all kinds of professionals and business individuals such as product designers, web developers, illustrators, authors, writers, and other business owners and executive leaders must effectively create a compelling concept note for the smooth execution of their projects.

Different Types of Concept Note

Peter F. Drucker said: “Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things.” To facilitate good project management, you need to learn and understand about the different types of concept notes. Your process of writing your project proposal and executing the entire project is determined by the type of literary piece you are working on. While guiding you in constantly learning about writing and getting your projects and other work successful, we will introduce and explain to you about the different types of concept notes below:

1. Academic Concept Note

A university student who is about to start conducting a particular research project must write a brief and clear academic concept note. Outlining the research project in a short summary, it aims on providing the department a specific idea of what the research project is all about. Include some major reasons on the significance of the project and the methods to accomplish it.  One example of an academic concept note is a scientific research concept note.

2. Event Concept Note

Business conferences, workshops and classes, virtual networking sessions, seminars, trade shows, local festivals, and many others are some examples of events that are commonly seen and popular in different places around the world. Whether for personal, business, corporate, or non-profit purposes, events are important to be managed and executed well to help participants and guests gain profound benefits while attending the programs. To successfully design a systematic program for a specific event, we recommend that you use an event concept note.

3. Organization Concept Note

There are a plethora of organizations in many lands and countries worldwide such as governments, corporations, political organizations, international organizations, charities, non-profit corporations, educational institutions, voluntary associations, and many more. If you have a goal of establishing a unique organization with a special advocacy in helping other people, then you need to utilize an organization concept note before operating. 

4. Journalism Concept Note

Are you working in the media and journalism sector? Do you write for business, crime, investigative, arts and lifestyle, education, or sports journalism? As you present your news and information to the readers, it is important that you use a journalism concept note while structuring your articles, editorials, columns, or other documents that will be published. It will help you to focus on the main idea of your article or news material.

5. Film Concept Note

Orson Welles said: “If you want a happy ending, that depends, of course, on where you stop your story.” Perhaps you are a filmmaker or movie producer and you are currently working on a short film project that must be submitted in a movie festival that you prefer. To guide you in creating a captivating film for your target audience, we suggest that you use a film concept note. With this, you can brainstorm about several concepts and ideas you want for your film and organize them well through a simple note.

Benefits of Writing a Concept Note

Thomas Frisendal, the author of Design Thinking Business Analysis: Business Concept Mapping Applied, said: “Design thinking is important in facilitating business and project development. One of the things to do in design thinking is concept mapping because it adds its excellent capabilities for understanding, communicating and creating ideas, especially for creating those exquisite A-Ha moments!” So, what are the benefits of writing a concept note for several projects and business work? Below are some of the benefits of writing a concept note:

1. Large Market Share

If you place your concept or idea on the market first, then you will have a large market share compared to others. So, provide high quality brands, products, or services to secure your original market share. Be ready to progress in marketing your concept and idea as extensively as possible. Doing this will help your business to gather more potential customers while you are the only and unique one who offers the concept in the industry. 

2. Proper Categorization and Arrangement of Concepts

Observe and reflect on what you were contemplating in that specific situation as it may possibly become meaningful information over time. So, gather your ideas and concepts on your concept note during your business project in real time. Then, categorize and arrange the concepts you generated as you prepare a draft of your project, or create a revision of your first draft. Additionally, it can help you in seaming different kinds of thread-like concepts and other themes you hadn’t perceived prior to imagining them in written composition. 

3. Brand Acknowledgement

It is very crucial that you concentrate some of your marketing efforts on setting up your business brand as a recognizable and unforgettable one while launching your new concept. Do your best in linking your brand along with your fresh concept so that the public can further acknowledge your brand and other projects.

4. Effective Price Development 

Because you still don’t have any competition when you initially launch your concept, you can develop the price of your product or services based on what you think the customers will pay. However, be mindful about this process and avoid establishing high prices. This will let other competitors offer similar products and services at much cheaper prices. 

5. Create and Develop Change

Barbara Januszkiewicz said: “Creative thinking inspires ideas. Ideas inspire change.” As you develop the concept note for a specific business project, consult the key members of your company or other professionals in your field to produce and collect new concepts and ideas. In this way, you can stay relevant and create notable change in your business firm or organization. Drive growth and increase well-being with the use of concept notes.

Basic Features of a Concept Note

In this section, you will learn how to construct a remarkably written and simple concept note. However, a concept note has different features. Include the following elements for you to create an impressive piece of writing:

Title: One of the primary elements of a concept note is the title. It is an appealing and engaging line of the document which provides the main topic, or subject of the concept note for your professional project or business work. It is typically set in a size larger than other remaining text elements in the page. Project Vision: This articulates the main purpose and goals of the project and identifies the particular problem to be assessed. Start with some background information and a short history of the topic related to the project. Explain the major reasons behind the commencement of the new project. Use these questions: What is the current situation? What problem are we trying to assess? Scope of the Project: A Identify the precise flow of activities involved in the project. Clarify the project scope properly. Write the important areas and functions that must be done in this section. Project Goals and Objectives: What does the person hope to accomplish? This is a significant part of the concept note as it contains the details on what are the specific goals and objectives of the person working on the project. Set up the current performance level whenever possible so that you are able to work on key targets of the project. Proposed Design, Methods and Procedures: Demonstrate how you will conduct and complete the overall project. Include some important steps, methods, or procedures to fulfill the specific goals and objectives of the project in the right way. Bibliography:While crafting your concept note until the end, you should make a list of sufficient references and other sources at the end of your project. It has some details about all other sources that were applied to develop the project or simply those that were cited in the project.

How to Create a Concept Note

What are the two major objectives that you need to fulfill for your editorial, news, or book project in 3-6 months? This is one of the common questions that you need to think about carefully while writing concept notes. Also, remember that a good concept can help make the product, event, or service a success by guiding developers, project leaders, brand designers, and advertising in the right direction. Below are some easy-to-follow tips  that indicate how to create a simple concept note:

Step 1: Research the Topic

Celia Green said: “The way to do research is to attack the facts at the point of greatest astonishment.” This statement is accurate as you need to search and dig deeper on the facts. So, have ample time to conduct research of the topic or subject of your concept note for business or other purposes. For instance, search for keywords and trends around the World Wide Web.  In this method, you will see where to start creating your concept note and sharpen your attention on your project goals and objectives.  

Step 2: Identify Project Goals and Objectives

How will you disintegrate the major topic or idea of your business project? Why do you prefer to start working on this particular art or book project in the first place?  Examine the anticipated long-term results and shorter routes to accomplish project goals.   Thus, identifying clear project goals and objectives for your work is very integral in creating concept notes. 

Step 3:  Develop a Plan for Project Design

Maya Angelou said: “You may encounter many defeats, but you must not be defeated. In fact, it may be necessary to encounter the defeats, so you can know who you are, what you can rise from, and how you can still come out of it.”  Use your clear insight about the duration of time, human resources, and budget required to complete the project. So, you need to plan the project design process through various processes such as assessment, analysis and objectives setting, and strategy development. Consult with your publishing committee or management that will be in charge of the project as early as possible. 

Step 4:  Maintain Brevity 

Louise Brooks said: “Writing is 1 percent inspiration, and 99 percent elimination.” Indeed, your concept note needs to maintain brevity so it must have 3-5 pages in length. Thus, you must aim on the fundamental ideas and not the secondary details. Let your reader comprehend the major objectives and business strategy that lies in your concept note. The auxiliary details of your proposed project can be refined down the road if the publishing committee or management greatly support in creating a full project proposal. Try asking your supervisor or project leader for copies of existing concept notes that you can use for practice. 

Step 5: Prepare the Note for Submission

Check with your publishing management office about your review mechanism because each district, division, or region has each of their own guidelines for the submission and approval of the concept note. After that, you can now prepare the concept note for submission and wait for the approval.

FAQs

What is the format of the concept paper?

The format of concept paper is that it must have 1-2 double-spaced pages which basically have 250-500 words.

What is a concept outline?

A concept outline is a significant part to present the connection of varying ideas to one another. It is composed of the title, main concept, subtitle, headings, and subheadings. 

What are the five elements of a concept paper?

The five elements of a concept paper are project vision, project targets, project scope, timeline, and project management.

How to write a business concept note?

When writing a concept note such as academic concept note, artwork concept note, brand concept note or business concept note, you need to include a clear and concise description of the concept you prefer for the business or project, identify the need of the market or industry, give an innovative and logical solution, interpret your proposed business model, state your Unique Value Proposition (UVP), and showcase a short summary of your business marketing plan.  

What is the difference between concept note and project proposal?

Concept note is an initial method of writing the project. It provides a brief overview of a proposal which is usually submitted to donors, funders, and the management as they want to view a particular project through a short summary. On the other hand, a project proposal contains well-detailed information about a particular project and it must be reviewed by a team or management that can give approval to the project.

Constituting the blueprint of brands and products, concepts are crucial for the development and marketing of a wide array of products and services of various businesses and organizations. Therefore, writing a clear and concise concept note is a fundamental method of creating a culture of innovation and change in your personal work or business project, and facilitating good project management. Plus, you don’t need to waste a lot of money and resources in developing a particular project like a brand, product, event, etc. because statistical studies prove that there are organizations that invest in project management practices that waste only 28x less money due to strategic initiatives. One of the strategic initiatives that you can perform is creating an effective concept note. So, we recommend that you download our free concept note samples here right now to help your brand, products, and other services to be acknowledged by many people!