Among the most critical documents, businesspersons need to know how to write a business proposals. This is because it spells the thin line that exists between the failure and success of a business, regardless of being a freelancer or a company. With excellent business proposals, you are assured of the blueprint for the expansion of the business and maintain excellent and quality relationships. On the other hand, writing business proposals can be confusing some times. It requires you honest and straightforward from the onset. Nowadays, people spend countless hours coming up with business proposals that target potential markets and investors, and in most cases, these proposals never work.
Conversely, there are people committed to writing business proposals that are accepted within the first submission. You would be wondering how they did that, but worry not, because this article is dedicated to how you can come up with winning business proposals, so stay put. You need to understand the rudiments of a business proposal before you can even start thinking of how you can write one. You also need to know what business proposals are because that will set the stage to come up with an excellent document in the end. Business proposals are documents that provide details of a product or a service to potential clients or customers. It explains why you are best suited to take up that business.
Most for the business proposals come in two kinds; the solicited and unsolicited business proposals.
Solicited business proposals
These are availed upon request by the client or served as a response to an advertisement published by the customer or client. These proposals have a more win rate because they are more specific to the person they are addressing. Preferably, stick to solicited business proposals. You must have a qualified head list; start a sales conversation before you pitch your product or service.
Unsolicited business proposals
The client or the potential customers do not request these proposals even though they are the target audience of this document.
You may use excellent examples of business proposals, but without understanding the secret formula for writing business proposals, you stand no chance of getting your idea through. As such, you need to consider the three Ps that stand for the Problem statement, proposed solution, and Pricing information. Let us dissect one P at a time.
The idea here is to convince your potential clients that you understand what they need better than any other person. Having understood this, you are simply stating their problem. You have to give a simple explanation of these needs because the success of your business proposals relies on this. The problem statement is essential because the clients expect that you will give excellent solutions to their existing problems. As such, you must have a full understanding of their current problem.
Remember that the idea of writing your business proposals is to provide viable solutions to an existing problem that your clients are facing. You need t provide as much information as you can in this case. Ensure that you address every need that you have identified.
This is a crucial aspect to many clients because it is a determinant of whether the contracted will be awarded to you or not. It anchors greatly on the solutions that you provided in the ‘proposed solutions’ section. If the solutions are short term, you must include a free summary. If you have a lengthy project, the payments have to be segmented to specific achievements and this information should appear in the free schedule list.
Now that you understand the 3P-formula of writing business proposals, there are factors you need to take into account for you to develop excellent business proposals. These factors are as follows:
Do extensive research
You need to research on the problem of your client because he is not going to provide all the details of the problems that they are facing, especially if you are writing an unsolicited business proposal. In your research, you need to include your client’s competitor as well as his customers. This makes your business proposals comprehensive and detailed. You can check sample business proposals that are unsolicited to get an idea of how this is done.
You can also come up with a profile of your ideal customer with details that pertain to their age, where they live and hang out online. This provides hints on what you can say and how to say it. Your business proposals should resonate with the potential client that you are targeting.
See it from their perspective
You need to be in the shoes of your potential client. This gives you the ability to provide information on various aspects they are likely to ask about. For instance, they would want to know why they need to pay you a hefty amount for the solutions you are providing and how these changes will be beneficial to their business. For those who have worked with a client before, you can ask them if they can provide a retainer for you as a way to increase your earnings. If you are conversant with your client’s work style, the industry you can convince them on why you are the best-placed person to handle their problem.
As you write your business proposals and have identified needs and problems in a given business, chances of other potential business proposal writers have the same information are high. This spells competition in the business proposals that are submitted to a company. As such, your business proposal must be unique, highlighting your talents, experience, qualifications and convince the client exhaustively way they need to pick you. At this point, you need to include the portfolio of your work in that business proposal because it will enhance your value. The testimonial shows your capabilities and makes the potential clients know what to expect from you.
These factors are crucial, and once you understand them, you can now start writing your business proposals. Take your time on each proposal you come up with because every project has its uniqueness. Remember that you want to show the client that you are the best-placed person to provide solutions to their problems. Before you even start the writing process, consider perusing some sample business proposals to see how you are going to structure yours.
Let us now deal with how you can structure business proposals that you are going to write henceforth. They have the same formula of introduction, the body, which should be detailed and a conclusion.
From the examples of business, proposals that you might have come across, you will find that the introduction must alight with the needs of your potential client. Include a brief story highlighting the character of your brand, which is essential in building trust. Make know the aspects that make your company stand out, the achievements, credentials and any awards or recognition that you may have. The length of this introduction anchors on the type of contract that you are looking for. If your business proposals are meant to last for a longer period, say years, you have to take your time to describe the fundamental values of your business. This part of business proposals should be put in a single page.
The executive summary
His section of your business proposals presents you with a chance to make your case, which of course is stating why you are the best choice for your potential client. The audience of this document has to take away a message from this proposal. It is not necessary to summarize every aspect of the business proposal, rather, dwell on the conclusions that you want the client to infer after going through your business proposals. This section should also appear on one page.
Table of contents
In most business proposals, this is optional but is essential to the reader especially in lengthy documents. You can list every section and subsection with their corresponding page number. Most importantly, it is recommended that business proposals should be as brief as possible, which makes it optional for you to include or leave out this proposal.
Now that you have made known the overall case of your business proposals, you need to formulate a good body for your document. This is where you outline the specifics of your proposal. Your answers are supposed to address the who, what, when, where, how, and why? Information that regards scheduling, logistics and pricing must be provided in this section. Feel free to include testimonials from past clients as well as a link to your step if you have one. The body of your business proposals ought to have caveats that concern the type of work you can deliver, not forget the pricing.
After outlining the details of your business proposals, reiterate on the results that you are going to provide if you win the contract from your potential client. Your business proposals should always close with a call to action motivating your audience to make an immediate visit on your website on the contact you. You need to make your client take immediate action, however small.
This one is optional, but it can accommodate any information that might n fit well in the body of your business proposals. You can include graphs, customer testimonials, resumes, and projections.
This very crucial document should not have any unnecessary mistakes. You have to edit it and ensure it has no mistakes and it follows everything that you intended to cover. No one wants to go through a proposal that is full of mistakes like inconsistent information and typos. When you edit your business proposals, you make it clear and easy for the audience to read and comment on it accordingly. You can get another person to go through it because that way, it is easy to spot mistakes that you might have inadvertently overlooked.
When writing your business proposals, refrain from using jargon’s and clichés because it can interfere with the understanding of the entire document. More so, avoid using long words because short words make it easy to read. You also have to write your business proposals in the active voice.
From any examples of business proposals that you come across, you need to check on the tone that has been used. It is better to use a clear and concise language that is free of industry jargon and technical terms. Avoid using hyperbolic language because it infers with the trust that you want to gain. Balance between keeping it real and using basic formalities of business proposals. It is good to use a casual-to-formal tone that is applicable in an office during a meeting. Your business proposals should never have humor in them since you do not know if the person is reading it.
For those who have written business proposals, you understand that it does not end with submitting the document. You have to follow it up with the client for you to enhance your chances of getting successful. You need to keep asking for answers from your potential clients. If you send your business proposal through email, it is easy to follow up with tracking software that can notify you when the client opens your message. When you make follow-ups, you can know if they have questions about your proposal.
Once you win the contract, the job has just started because you have to apply the same level of commitment you did when coming up with your proposal. For you to stay on top of things, you need to keep the details as straightforward as possible. That is how you come up with business proposals.