You have an idea that’s sure to be of interest to investors. Everything is set, including the company and the product. All that’s left is the execution.
Business proposals can mean the difference between your idea taking off or being passed on by a client. To get more people to sign up for your service, product or brand, you’ll need these tried-and-tested methods.
Involve Your Client Right From The Start
It’s easy to take the brief, retreat and present the proposal as a massive reveal. Not only is this counterintuitive to success, but you’ll have greater risk of not having the proposal accepted.
The real work begins not when the client accepts, but when you involve them in the construction of the business plan. Don’t become so attached to crafting the best sales contract or proposal template as you’ll be forced to change them a few times anyway.
Don’t wait for your client to show interest- take the proactive effort and present your idea. Then, ask for feedback on how to proceed and make it feasible. Human nature says that people tend to approve when they feel they have had a hand in its creation. Take advantage of this little-known fact and you may just get yourself the green light.
Stick To Solutions, Not Features
It’s easy to fawn over your product or service and its many innovative features. You could be tempted to add a bit of background to your approach but hold off on that and you could create a more compelling argument.
Show your work by presenting solutions first, then features next. The plan should have a clear outline of what you intend to deliver and how it could change the current status quo of the niche or industry.
Investors will be interested in how the product or service gives them a real solution in terms of goals and current problems. Down the line, your clients will also want to hear how you can protect your products from risks and potential setbacks.
From here, you can use the time-honored formula of translating features into benefits. For instance, instead of saying how your processor is ten times faster than current ones, highlight the fact that it can carry out computations much faster and improve efficiency.
Go over the material a few times so you can deliver the solution smoothly and without a hitch. Having your client sign off shouldn’t be a problem once you get past that.
Proposals aren’t just one-sided affairs. Prospective clients are people who will have questions, opinions and feedback. Aside from valid concerns, your client may throw curveballs just to see if you’ve prepared in advance. In this case, do your homework and anticipate questions that may come your way.
The key here is to provide simple, clear and concise answers. Focus be calm and look them in the eye whenever possible. You’ll want to exude confidence, so they’ll know that you believe in your business proposal.
Allot time for Q&A sessions but keep it short and structured. You can suggest stakeholders formulate their feedback and send it to you individually. You’ll be in control and avert on-the-fly fixes, or instances where they start dictating possible solutions for you.
Winning A Deal Happens In The Follow-Up
Doing a follow-up at the right time can convince the client to sign off right then and there. But how will you know when the time is right?
Don’t assume that just because you didn’t get a reply means that the client is simply not interested. Keep reaching out in acceptable intervals so they’ll know that you’re waiting. Setting a deadline can be useful as it keeps your clients within a timeframe and adds a sense of urgency as well.
Make Sign-Offs Painless
Once the client explicitly agrees with the go-ahead, your goal is to make signing off as quick and as painless as possible. Instead of having to send a courier or emailing a document (where the client has to print or scan and send it back to you), you can take advantage of newer technology in the form of payment integrations or using business templates. In this case, signing on a proposal is as easy as opening a web browser and committing to a digital signature that’s verified.
Learning To Deal With Rejection is a Core Skill
If the client isn’t as engaged or involved in your project, then they wouldn’t think twice about not accepting your proposal.
You can still convince your client to sign off on your business plan by asking them what aspects they don’t like and making the necessary adjustments. You’ll know what your project is worth, so if the negotiation feels wrong, then by all means pull out.
Getting a no is part of pitching an idea to clients. Deal with rejection and come to terms with its emotional backlash. Brainstorm on what went wrong and what you can do to make it right, then find another potential investor. Perfect the art of convincing clients to sign off and you’ll be on your way to exciting opportunities!