For some the mere title of this post might drum up the same quantity of jittery nerves that a groom has when trying to write his vows and he has already done the proposal part!  But compiling proposals is becoming more common in business and a great way to give weight to a new idea or product.  Of course, the need for a proposal doesn’t stop there as one is often required for a new business venture, job pitch or product launch. The latter is going to be the focus of this blog post.

As a lot of you may know, working on a freelance basis or having your own business often will often call for you to tender for a job.  This can be a fairly simple process or require you to complete a manual sized set of forms and be rather taxing.  But no matter how easy or hard the process is, it will start from the same point, with a brief.

The purpose of a brief is to give the recipient enough information so they understand the task in hand, the desired outcome of the task and sometimes, a preferred method of carrying out the task.  I’ve had many a brief in my time which have ranged from the very detailed where I was left in no doubt  of what was expected from me, to the two-liners which required an element of coaxing on my part in order to add some meat to the bones and give myself a fair chance of completing the tender to the best of my ability.

Here is a link to a blog post I did a while back on writing briefs, it should give you some tips.

Right, brief read and understood, you will now want to start on your proposal.  So first things first, you need to show that you have understood the brief so a good place to start is to clarify what you aim to do, or propose, by giving a summary of the brief and the objective of the task.

Next you need to say how you are going to meet the objective.  This part will have a few points to it and, if promoting a new product for example, should incorporate such measures as:

  • Market research you will do and what you want to learn

  • Past examples of campaigns and how you can improve them

  • Promotion and communication required

  • Channels you plan to use and why

  • A way to measure progress

  • Resources available to you and how you will use them

  • Man-power available to you

  • Extras (entering the product for an award etc.)

You need to show that you understand where the new product is going to fit in the marketplace and who its consumer market it.  You also need to show that you are aware of how to reach this market using the appropriate channels for maximum exposure and reach.  You should think about how you are going to measure your success as well when thinking about some of the channels you are going to use and install some targets and KPIs.  The man-power part of this section is going to show the expertise at your disposal and also give an indication of the length of time you will take to reach your objective.

Again, the length of time part should have a few points to it also as you need to consider that certain aspects of the project make take longer than anticipated or reaching a certain goal may require amendments to your communication strategy be made.  Give a breakdown of who is working on what and your anticipated time frame for completing each component. This will keep you on track with your project planning and also for giving a cost breakdown.

So finally, you have said what you’re going to do to reach the objective set by the ‘employer’ but what they really want to know is how your hard work is going to continue to benefit them.  In the final section you may want to include projections and forecasts based on your research and expectations of individual elements of the project.

E.g. are you going to gather data so you have a database to market to in the future, and, how is your communication going to increase brand awareness?

I know that all this information may be a little difficult to take in and you might feel that now, at the end of the blog, you are still not sure where to begin but that’s OK, Début Marketing have done this many times before and can help you put together a winning proposal.

Next week we are going to look at content marketing – what is it and how do you do it properly?

How to compile a proposal

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