You can have the best ideas in the world, but they will go to waste if you don’t present them the right way. Even if you worked for months to close a deal, the business proposal is still the most important stage of the process.
It’s the finishing touch of a long journey. Let’s explore how to create a proposal that sells and that clients will have a hard time saying “no” to.
Gather all the information beforehand
One thing entrepreneurs always forget is to go for that extra mile. Even if you put everything on paper, there might still be questions that you have to address. Remember, clients will be investing money and effort into your venture. Not coming prepared and not addressing all the question marks is enough to make even the most benevolent client walk away.
Structure the proposal like a tree. Make the main selling point the root, as well as the niche and experience of your clients. Act as you know them and like you are already certain that they need your services.
Focus on the scope
The “scope” of a business proposal is, by all means, a summary. It is the first thing your clients will read and the most important factor in making a good first impression.
Make sure you address the essential questions (what, who, where, how, when and why). An ideal business proposal that wins clients expands. With the scope coming in first, clients will feel like they already know what you’re talking about.
Leave the descriptiveness for later sections. The scope is to draw in and make an impression while providing an intro for more detailed parts.
A common mistake in business proposals is that people underestimate costs and work hours. For example, if you’re offering to transform a brand and their website, don’t write the real number of days you need to do it. If you are positive that you can do it in two months, write three months just in case. Why, exactly?
You can never effectively predict all the possible obstacles that hinder the work plan. You will meet the three-month goal and you won’t be late, despite the obstacle. The best thing that can happen? You will finish in two months and knock your clients off their feet.
Don’t forget the caveats
Caveats are the “terms and agreements” that the service provider states in a business proposal draft. By signing the proposal and the contract, the client accepts these terms as valid and is legally bound to abide by them. Having a strong caveats section sends a message of determination, which is something every client loves.
Avoid making yourself liable for things you weren’t brought in for. Putting phrases like “[name of your company] is hereby not responsible for any technical issues, problems and obstacles that don’t relate to [the project you’re proposing].” A client-business relationship is important, but you shouldn’t accept other people’s blame.
Closing it strong
Perhaps the most underutilized part of every business proposal is a conclusion. Here, you have a chance to repeat all the key points and emphasize your goal. Highlight what’s in it for the client and how will their brand/business/venture/company benefit from this particular proposal.
In the end, add a single call to action that urges them to contact you and to learn more. Be open for further communication, questions and proposed changes. Congratulations, you know how a business proposal that will win clients over, regardless of the situation.