Having established that there is a need that you can meet within the required timescale, your next steps are to evaluate how best you meet the need, craft your offering and then present it for consideration.

However, before putting pen to paper or finger to keyboard, ask yourself the following questions. The answers will give you a good insight into where your customer actually is within their buying process, where you stand with regard to becoming their supplier and how much information, and of what type, you should be including.

  • What sort of proposal does your customer want?

Ballpark or budgetary pricing may mean that they are early in their process or that you are just ‘making up the numbers’. Firm or final pricing may indicate that they are approaching the end of their process.

  • How will your proposal differentiate you from your competitors?

This is your opportunity to emphasise your understanding of your customer’s requirements and highlight why they should be buying from you. A proposal should not just be ‘facts and figures’ about your product or service. It should help your customer to understand what value both your and your products bring to them.

  • How should you present your proposal?

It’s easy to fall into the habit of e-mailing your offer as a pdf file but would a different approach serve you better? What about hand-delivering a bound copy? Could it be given as a presentation? Should there be different versions tailored to the needs of different members of the decision-making group?

Please contact us if you need help in refining your proposal process so that it generates business-winning offers.

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