The world of ecommerce has made it easier for startups to penetrate industries. Although the execution has become easy, a lot of startups still find it challenging to acquire adequate capital or revenue (from clients) for their online businesses, which is where business proposal writing comes in.
Business proposals are official pitches made to investors or clients to acquire capital or take accounts on board. It is one of the most common capital-generating strategies for startups across the globe. This article will equip you with all the necessary skills required to construct a truly persuasive business proposal.
Before we get into it, let’s just throw one myth out of the way – ‘business proposals’ are not ‘business plans.’ The former term refers to business writing to convince customers and investors, while a professional business plan is about the strategies your business will adapt to march forward in the market.
What Constitutes a Proposal?
Proposal writing should be simple yet effective. Although there is a lot that you may include in it, there are a few integral parts of a formal business presentation that must be present in it. These are:
- Title and subtitle
- Business and team overview
- Table of Contents
- Executive Summary
- Schedule and Timelines
- Terms and Conditions
A good way to begin your proposal writing is to identify what an investor or a client would be interested in if he were to partner with your business or take its services onboard? Some of the critical aspects include:
- Understanding the business inside out
- Know the scope, and revenue model
- Know how practical it is and if there are any resisting factors
- Know their potential stake in the business
There are several other things investors want to learn about before investing in your business. The abovementioned points will help you get a decent start.
Business Proposal Writing in 2021
The roots of proposal writing remain the same; the only evolution that has come in 2021 is the fact that your proposals should now be shorter, crisper, and still be enticing.
The following are a few pre-requisites before you sit down to for business proposal writing.
Work on Your Template
The modern business landscape is too hassle-filled. With countless startups penetrating the industry due to the digital, clients from numerous industries have ample choice to choose their next vendor from. This means that a single market call for business proposals leaves them with potentially hundreds of presentations.
For example, if a brand calls for a pitch in the advertising industry, there are countless agencies ready to prepare and send one to the brand. It becomes a race against time, which means not only do you have to create a lucrative proposal, but you also have to do it in time.
Furthermore, clients don’t have the time to wait for proposals unless they are particularly waiting for one from your end. As soon as they find the right match, they will accept it – you don’t want to lose a client out to the competition!
This Is Where Templates Come In Handy
Proposal writing templates are basically skeletons of proposals. These skeletons include all the necessary information you need to share in every single quote like pricing, strategy, revenue models, cost, opportunity, company information, and more. You can have that prewritten in the form of templates for all your proposals.
Variable figures like prices can have empty columns where you only need to insert the numbers. This will save you a great deal of time during proposal writing.
Answer All Potential Questions
Oftentimes clients don’t even know what they want. When they see your quote, they will have questions light up in their mind regarding things like refunds and other similar policies. Your job is to integrate as many of these queries as possible into your proposal, so if a question arises, they already have an answer to it.
This proposal writing strategy will also benefit you against your potential competition as clients are likelier to opt for or consider proposals that have solutions to all their problems.
For example: if you are sending a business proposal for digital marketing services, some potential queries could be:
- What happens if my page doesn’t rank higher in the given time period?
- Will my website’s coding be visible to others?
- What if the new layout costs me my current traffic and conversions?
Answer questions from every possible angle in the proposal to make it as thorough as possible. Pro tip: Don’t give away too much information; give away the gist and let them contact your sales contact point for further assistance.
Constructing Your Proposal
There are several critical components of a winning business proposal. The following section will teach you how to write them from an executive summary and TOC to pricing.
Title and Subtitle
Most startups make the mistake of just introducing themselves and what they do in the introduction. Winning enterprises take an additional step of reassuring the clients in the introduction that they understand the problem and have a viable solution to it.
This tells the client that you actually understand the problem to which he is seeking a solution, which is a step that subconsciously increases the client’s confidence in your proposal.
Business And Team Overview
Once the introduction is complete, make sure to provide a business review of what you do and how you do it. Adding a case-study-based solution from your portfolio will showcase your authority over what you do, which may captivate the reader.
Furthermore, add your portfolio to let the client know that you have previously dealt with such a scenario and that your proposal is the best solution to their problem. Your team’s overview is critical since the client would want to know the people who will be working on his project.
Table of Contents
Clients have several business letters to go through, which is why you need to make it easier for them to skim yours. While in the process of business proposal writing, make sure that you create a table of contents that systematically takes them through the proposal enabling them to move directly to sections that interest them the most.
This is an overview of the entire proposal, a brief summary of what the reader can expect from the proposal and how it will benefit their entity. This part is often neglected by amateurs in proposal writing, which can make or break your potential client.
An executive summary is your chance to win the client before they even dive into the actual contents of your proposal. Proposal writing experts suggest taking ample time to write this section as it is an initial impression of the solutions you are offering.
The client has a problem, and you have a solution. This section identifies the “how” part of it. How will you execute the solution to solve the problem? You need to write your approach to the solution from the very beginning to successful deployment. You can also add a relevant case study to back your approach – it will add authenticity to your proposal, which will enable you to gain the client’s confidence.
This is often the lengthiest part of the proposal as it sheds light on the strategy you will follow to execute your plan.
Schedule and Timelines
Share the time it will take to deploy the solution. Practicality is key here. Make sure you divide the goal into particular tasks and allocate a separate timeline to each task. It will help them understand how much time it will take for the results to show, based on which, he could plan other internal activities.
This is another critical portion of proposal writing. In fact, most people would skip to this particular section to identify if your proposal falls within their budget. Only if it does will they proceed with reading through your proposal, which is why providing competitive pricing is critical in proposal writing.
Terms and Conditions
This is where you share all the terms of the agreement, correspondence, discrepancies, payments, deliveries, and more. These terms should be flexible since the chances are that if your proposal gets accepted, the client would want to negotiate terms and conditions to find a middle ground that works for both parties.
That sums up business proposal writing. If you believe you need expert assistance on any of the points mentioned above, or even apart from them, reach out to Writing Services Hub today! We house a team of a professional proposal writing team that can help your build winning templates and proposal.
You can get in touch with Writing Services Hub by calling us (786) 206 3123, or fill out this form to let our experts get back to you. Our team would be more than happy to assist you!