When you’re starting your business there are a few things you should have ready to officially begin marketing your brand to potential clients and customers. And one of those things? A business proposal.
Business proposals are essential in bridging the gap between you and your potential customers/clients. When you have a well-thought-out proposal, you’ll be able to persuade companies to align business propositions with you.
Here, we detailed five steps you’ll need to write an effective business plan that will help grow your company in more ways than one.
Step 1: Introduce Yourself + Table of Contents
First things first – introduce yourself. Your initial introduction, whether written or in person, will be the first impression they have of your business. Make sure it’s a good one..
Your introduction in your business plan should be concise with details on your expertise in your market, what your company does, the problem it solves and what sets it apart from other companies with your same niche.
In addition to your introduction, be sure to include the Table of Contents on the following page. This will serve as a quick guideline for your readers who want to directly skim the imperative information needed to decide whether or not they want to collaborate with you.
Step 2: Executive Summary
Your executive summary will be the frame that answers the necessary questions such as “who, what, where, when, why and how” you plan on growing your business.
Essentially, this section of your business proposal will serve as your elevator pitch. Your summary should explain why your company is the right fit for your potential client/customer. Explain your company’s strengths and the advantages you have over your competitors.
Step 3: Project Details
Your project details are the central portion of your proposal, as this section will aid your reader in understanding your scope of work and your unique approach to solving a problem within your industry.
This is where you will explain the tactics you’ll ensure delivery on and all other needed details that make your company different from others.
Step 4: Deliverables and Milestones
This section will allow your prospective clients to understand what it is exactly you are promising to deliver to them. You will detail in-depth descriptions of the services you will provide during your partnership with them. But always remember to be open to discussion on this section, and be clear as possible on what you’re delivering on as this is where your client will most likely have the most edits and personal requests.
In addition to your deliverables, you will also be adding your milestones in this section to highlight your success. This will help your client gain a better understanding of the capability of your services while simultaneously establishing a trust factor between what you offer and what you can deliver.
Step 5: Budget
Now, let’s talk money. Putting a price tag on your services can be a bit challenging – especially when you’re just getting started in the industry. However, the general rule of thumb is to thoroughly do your market research, and price slightly higher. That way, if your client counter-offers, the figure they counteroffer will be one that is aligned with your industry.
Always make sure to create an itemized checklist of the services you will be providing so that your potential client will have a clear picture of what it is you are providing them. If this checklist doesn't exactly work with your proposal, then try to be as detailed as possible on what you’re offering and stand firm in your confidence that you will be able to deliver. The worst thing you can do as an entrepreneur is overpromised and underdeliver.
Creating a business proposal is the gateway to having a dream and creating a defined goal. Take your time creating this pivotal document as it will become the one thing that will land you the opportunities you need to grow your business.