Starting a new business takes a lot of hard work. And to make this business successful and profitable, you need to expand your client base. But how will you convince potential clients to choose you over your competitors in the industry?
This is where business proposals enter the scene. Creating a business proposal that outlines everything about your business, what it does and how it solves a specific pain point, can help persuade potential clients that yours is the best firm for the job.
And who better to do this job than you? As a sales representative, apart from shedding the spotlight on your business, you can use the business proposal to convince potential customers how your product can provide a meaningful solution to their business.
Don't know how to get started with the business proposal? In this article, we will discuss how to write an effective business proposal. But first, let’s be clear about what a business proposal is.
A company or an organization creates a business proposal to present a secure business plan to their potential clients. A legal document, it is given to the prospects with the aim to sell the company's services or product.
Here are a few things that should be covered in every business proposal:
There is no single definitive way to write all kinds of business proposals. You can create a winning business proposal with proper research, personalization, and customized solutions based on the client's requirements. Let's discuss the essential steps and points every proposal should include:
The first few pages of your proposal should introduce your business, leadership team, and its people. Here are a few essential elements that your introduction should have:
Let’s explore each of these elements in brief.
The overview makes up the first two-three pages of your business proposal. It should reflect professionalism as it will create the first impression. Remember to make it aesthetically appealing. The overview includes the title page and a cover letter.
The title page must include the following elements:
Next comes the cover letter, make sure you draft it carefully as it is the hook of your B2B proposal. It should have:
Address your prospect while writing the cover letter – this adds a personal touch to the letter.
It will help your potential clients know what you have covered in the business proposal. It makes things simple and accessible for them.
The decision-makers or people you will be pitching to are senior executives most times. They have busy schedules and can't read your proposal in one go. Having a table of contents makes it easy for them to skim through parts that are more important to them.
Also, if you are sending a digital proposal, it is advisable to add a clickable table of contents for easy navigation to different sections.
An executive summary states the exact reason for sending the proposal and your best solution. It must include:
At this point, the client likes your proposal but does not trust you fully. So leverage this section to communicate to them why they should believe in you and your solution. You should portray yourself as their best hope and convince them that you can solve their problems or needs.
Highlight what your company is best at and how qualified and hardworking your team is. Also include success stories, past experiences, awards, and accreditation. Add social proof to make them more credible. It will boost your authority.
What: Write about the client’s needs, problems, or pain points for which you are proposing the business deal.
How: A well-structured problem statement will allow the client to know that you have fully understood their problem or needs. Here are some things to keep in mind while writing it:
Then write a compelling problem statement that looks like this:
What: Offer a well-researched and planned strategy to solve the issue and fulfill your prospect’s needs.
How: Write the solution in detail. You can elaborate on it using separate sections. It should be customized as per the client's needs. You can also tell them about the deliverables and methods you will use, along with a timeframe of when they can expect the results. You can make it visually appealing by adding flowcharts, roadmap, or timeline infographics.
This section is where you outline your fees, payment mode, schedule, and payment terms. Now, this can be a little tricky to ace. Because on one side you want to crack the deal but on the other side you don’t want to come across as someone who is under or over-price their services.
You can provide a few pricing options to the prospective client. Various proposal software available online can help you get a responsive pricing table. It will help potential clients to calculate prices for the products or services they are interested in. Additionally, breaking up the price range is a great way to ensure prospects know what they are paying for.
This is where you put a summary of everything your client is agreeing to when accepting the proposal and what you expect from them in return. Make sure it is mentioned clearly and approved by your legal team.
It should concisely mention all the project timelines from the beginning of the project to its culmination, pricing, payment mode, and methods. Through this, you will be clear on what is being agreed on.
The final step is to include a signature box at the end of the proposal for the client. It is through this that the partnership will become official.
Your prospects must know what to do once they are done reading your proposal. Define and highlight your contact information so that they can reach out to you if they have any queries or are interested in doing business with you. Such call-to-actions can boost sales by over 1,500%!
Wondering how you can make the potential client not only set aside time to read the proposal but also accept it? Here are a few tips that can make your business proposal stand out:
The executive summary, including the social proof from the clients you have worked with so far, can take you a long way. You can also add testimonials, case studies, and quotes from your existing clients in the qualification seduction of your business proposal.
Now that you’ve seen how to write a business proposal, use these tips to write a solid proposal and delight your clients and eventually expand your business.
But before you share your business proposal, you can start engaging with your prospects and expanding your customer base using Outplay. A multi-channel sales engagement platform, it helps you prospect on various sales channels. Want to know more? Click here for a free demo or opt for a 14-day free trial to get a hand experience.
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