Are you looking to win more business? If so, then you need to start writing proposals that are impossible to resist. A well-written proposal can help you win new contracts and beat out the competition.
Probably the best tip available is to use reliable tools like RFP response automation software. This platform already contains templates for requests for proposals. Businesses can also save theirs here for future use.
However, the software is only half the work. The other lies in the contents and context of the proposal. These are the tips that can make the document more compelling.
1. Start with a Strong Introduction
Your introduction is the first impression that the potential client will have on the proposal. Start strong with a catchy headline, outlining the main points of your proposal.
These headlines can talk about the problem the company wishes to solve, the business’s unique selling proposition (USP), or the benefits that it can offer to the clients.
An ideal introduction is around three or four paragraphs long but no more than 500 words in total. It also needs to contain persuasive language. Use powerful adjectives to convey the correct message.
2. Outline the Proposal’s Structure
Outlining the proposal’s structure before you begin writing it saves time and helps keep thoughts organized. It also helps the reader understand the document.
The structure of the proposal should be easy to follow and make sense logically. Start by listing all the topics to discuss in the proposal or use an outline template with drag-and-drop sections, so it is easy to organize the content. Then, flesh out the topics with more detail.
If starting is challenging, focus on the problem that the business is looking to solve. The proposal also needs to answer these questions: who, what, when, where, why, and how.
3. Describe the Products or Services Clearly
The proposal should present the products or services in clear, concise language. The reader needs to understand what is being offered and how it benefits them.
For example, if the team is writing a sales proposal for new equipment, discuss why this equipment is better than the old one. Use comparisons and statistics to back up statements made about the client’s business and its offerings.
If the proposal is for a service, provide more information about how it works to solve the problem and what makes the proposed solution unique.
All of this needs a clear, easy-to-understand language. If jargon or technical speak is necessary, its definition should follow.
Break it down into smaller chunks by using subtitles and bullet points. This way, the document is easier to scan through and understand. Another option is to use visuals like graphs and charts to break up large amounts of text and make information easier to digest.
4. Explain How the Team Intends to Solve the Client’s Problems
No proposal is complete without explaining how the team plans to solve the client’s problem. This section should discuss what the business hopes to achieve with this project and how it will help them reach their goals.
Include a detailed plan of action that outlines what steps need to be taken, resources required, timeframe, and personnel involved in completing the project. Use a numbered list to make this section easy to follow and scan through, so the reader can easily see what needs to happen when and by whom.
The proposal also needs a call-to-action to convince the client that they need your services or products now. It gives them an incentive and motivates them into action. Make sure this section is persuasive, relevant to the client’s needs, and well-written.
Include a project budget that outlines how much money is needed for the project and where it will be used. Use line items to break down the costs involved in completing the project so there are no surprises down the road.
Attach a letter of intent to officially state the team’s interest in working with the client. This document shows that the proposal is serious and has been well thought out.
5. Proofread the Proposal
Proofread the proposal before sending it off. Mistakes can cost a business money because they reflect poorly on the team’s professionalism and credibility.
The best way to go about this task is with word processing software, like Grammarly or Microsoft Word. Use spell check, grammar checks, and read-aloud features to find mistakes. Have someone else read the proposal as well to get a different perspective.
Reread the entire document several times to make sure everything is correct and contains no errors.
6. Thank the Client
No proposal is complete without a thank-you note at the end. This shows that the team appreciates the client’s time and effort in reviewing their offer carefully before making any decisions about whether to move forward with it.
A simple “thank you for taking this opportunity into consideration” will suffice here. However, if possible, provide additional reasons the team is grateful for their interest. Add another call to action, perhaps a number or email they can reach out to if they have further questions or concerns.
Writing a winning proposal is no easy task. It takes time, effort, and skill to put together an effective document that will win over clients. These tips, however, will help any team create a proposal that is sure to impress.