If your proposals do not have a success rate of over 75%, you are either selling to a non-buyer (person in company who does not make company decisions), or your proposals lack substance. I'm here to help. Let me take a few minutes of your time to show you what, and what not to include in your proposal to a prospective buyer.
Let's go through the numbers:
1) Change the Paradigm
Get rid of your mission statements because they are utterly useless. "We have integrity, respect, blah, blah, blah." Really? I was looking for somebody who was dishonest and lazy. Mission statements are generic pickup lines that every businessperson has heard some version of. However, it is a great way to show your buyer that you attended a High School English class.
2) Give a Forensic
The first paragraph should include what you assessed your buyers problems were, followed by a vague statement as to how you will solve them. The former should get the buyer thinking, "yes, that's exactly what I said," while the latter should be a teaser for the next section of your proposal.
3) Highlight Program Goals
Next, show every clear cut objective you plan on accomplishing. Here you are translating what method you will take to solve the buyers problems. The objectives should always be guaranteed because they are what you should have complete control over.
4) Show the Value
Next you need to provide bullets of the specific value your objectives will collectively provide. For example: "a 60% decrease in marketing dollars spent over the next 5 quarters while steadily improving customer base by 20% within 2 months." This section is crucial because you are showing the tangible value in your offering. If you are an inexperienced consultant, start with a lower fee and more modest goals. As you strengthen your craft, increase your goals and your fee.
5) Provide Options
Always offer 2-3 options ranging in price for buyer to choose from. Don't give them a "yes" or "no" proposal, give them a "yes" "yes" or "yes" proposal. This is basic psychology.
Financing is always negotiable, but fee and objectives are not. I always tell our clients that when they are sick, the Doctor gives them rigid prescriptions to make them feel better. Your recommendations will improve your client's condition, so there should be no reason to compromise. After all, if they knew what works, they would not be coming to you.
The chief goal of your proposal is to get accepted while communicating the tangible value you wish to generate for your prospective client. Show them the beef, not the grill.
Don't compete — DOMINATE.
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Matt Steffen was Listed by Forbes as the #1 Marketing Consultant Who Avoids the B.S.