Have prospective clients told you that your proposals were difficult to understand, or too lengthy to navigate through? Are you looking for a way to make your proposals stand out among your competition and take your business to the next level? As a result, you will be able to eliminate the same mistakes your competitors are making and increase your closing percentage. After all, your proposal is the first reflection of the quality of work that can be expected from you. Jason Swenk ran a successful digital marketing agency for over 12 years before selling it to focus on sharing valuable information to help others take their businesses to the next level. Podcast: Play in new window Download.
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Have prospective clients told you that your proposals were difficult to understand, or too lengthy to navigate through? Are you looking for a way to make your proposals stand out among your competition and take your business to the next level? As a result, you will be able to eliminate the same mistakes your competitors are making and increase your closing percentage. After all, your proposal is the first reflection of the quality of work that can be expected from you.
Jason Swenk ran a successful digital marketing agency for over 12 years before selling it to focus on sharing valuable information to help others take their businesses to the next level. Podcast: Play in new window Download. He is a digital-preneur, and an author with over 12 years of running a successful digital agency until he sold it in Jason, welcome to The Marketing Agents podcast.
This is really exciting for me. How exactly did you get here? I ran an agency for 12 years, but after I sold my agency I was kinda lost. Well listen, I think I mentioned to you when we were talking before that I found you through a Facebook ad that talked about creating proposals that close business.
So I know that a lot of people that listen to this show are either running their own agency or are independent contractors doing some consultant work, so proposals are just part of your day to day business. And I learned this the hard way. I met with a very, very small company a long time ago called Berkshire Hathaway. It was so pathetic, they basically kind of laughed at me. When I got back, I found out how big of a company they were.
And so from that moment, I knew I needed a change and I needed to look at my closing percentages and how long did I spend doing a proposal. So if you get the things out of sequence, you have very little chance of reaching that person. So the first step is creating a cover letter. Only 9 out of agencies that I did studies on actually do a cover letter. What would you recommend us doing? But the one thing I want to make sure you guys put on the proposal cover page is an expiration date.
And it puts a sense of urgency on them. And is there a specific phrase that you have? And this is different than the cover letter, too, correct? We have a cover letter and then we have a cover page. And then step 3, this is one of the most important steps and most people leave this off or get this wrong. And I always start off with a little NLP, neuro-linguistic programming.
So I state 2 obvious facts that I know the client knows is true. One of the keys that we did here is we would categorize them. So we were a full service agency, we had tons of people, so we could be the full service. So we would categorize our services from creative, marketing, technology and whatever other kind of buckets that we have, so it was easy to follow. You mentioned adding in images, though. So can you give me one example of an image that you might use to kind of enhance this proposal?
Well, you want to maybe show that off a little bit, align the picture a little to the right, or create a nice, little header, just to make it easier to read. Apple does this the best. They always have their slides — barely any text — and they have an amazing image. Now, you have to have a lot of text on your proposal because this is going to protect you later on, but anywhere that you can add an image to break that up adds extra value to it.
And this also can be an upsell that you can do later on for other services and products that you have. So we would do it based on two tables. The first table is the one time charges.
Most people tell them right in the very beginning of the proposal who they are and their experience and why they exist and all their awards and all the people that are involved in the project. And they all start with that in the very beginning. No one cares about you until they know that you can help and what you can benefit them.
And this is where you just tell them why you exist. Tell them about your company, tell them the people that will be on the project or the people that have invented your product or service, tell them just a little bit. And then they had to separate it. I want to sign it right now. There was just so much information and so much to read through, I really struggled with it.
I set you up perfectly. So it goes into step 8. Step 8 is never send the proposal to a client, not until you walk them through it. Let me explain a little bit. They go dark. I know it happened to me and I got sick and tired of it.
And I started looking at what happened and how can I change this. I would like to do a proposal for you. Can I get your commitment that we can meet face to face or on Skype or online or over the phone and go over this?
If we had a number of different sections that we were doing for people, we would send certain sections to them ahead of time. The more times that you meet with people, the more rapport. And If I needed to add anything, I would add that to the template. My proposals were pretty long, but I never spent over 15 minutes creating it because we already created this template and we had this process in place.
Jason: If you go to jasonswenk. I even have my proposal template, if you guys wanted to check out the proposal template. I do webinars all the time, I have a bunch of programs and I put out podcasts every week and video shows and all that just to provide value to you guys. So go to jasonswenk. Rich Brooks is on Twitter surprise, surprise. Jason was great. So much information in so little time. Help a marketer out?
I forgot. Thank you, Rich!
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