After investing so much effort in the preliminary stages, it can be frustrating to miss out on opportunity after opportunity because of weak sales proposals. Fortunately, you can write more powerful proposals and boost revenue dramatically by following these tips on writing for sales:
1. Focus on the client.
Too often, sales professionals make the mistake of starting a sales proposal with the history of the company. While this information may be important and interesting to you, it will likely have little impact on your prospective client’s decision. Catch your readers’ attention instead by discussing their needs first and explaining how your product will help meet those needs.
2. Don’t beat around the bush.
Prospective clients often skim longwinded proposals—if they read them at all. Don’t waste your clients’ time with cumbersome proposals: Instead, keep your proposals as brief and to the point as possible, cutting out any information unrelated to your clients’ needs.
3. Use titles, headings, and bullet points.
Professional formatting can break up a lengthy proposal and make it much more straightforward for readers. These tools help your prospective clients navigate the proposal and find relevant information.
4. Incorporate testimonials.
Testimonials from third parties can build your credibility. It’s a good idea to include endorsements from companies similar to your prospective clients’ businesses if possible, since these will be more relatable and will carry a greater impact.
5. Offer more than one option.
Instead of including only one option in your sales proposal, try offering three—such as basic, professional, and premium packages. This not only creates context for your prospect’s decision but boosts your odds of closing a bigger deal by presenting a premium option for consideration.
6. Include a final summary.
Many prospective clients will breeze through the details of your proposal and skip to the very end. Catch their attention with a brief bullet-point summary of the solutions or services you offer.
7. Proofread, proofread, proofread.
When it comes to sales proposals, careful proofreading is the final and most crucial step. A typo or grammatical error can undermine your proposal in a big way, presenting you in an unprofessional light and creating the impression that you don’t care enough about your clients to double check your work.
We can help you perfect your business writing skills and land more sales through effective, persuasive proposals. Get in touch with us today to book one of our business writing training seminars.
Tim Taggart says...
Re: #7 above. A colleague presented a proposal for an employee recognition program to a Fortune 500 company; it was accepted, despite rigorous competition from companies larger than we were. The vice president of HR, who made the decision, was asked why he chose us instead of one of our competitors. The first bullet point in his letter said, “Your proposal had no typos, misspellings, or grammatical errors; this tells us that you are a company that pays attention to details.” The program billed over $750,000 annually. I wasn’t surprised — I’d proofread the proposal for my colleague before it was presented..
On April 01, 2019