Best Practices in Proposal Writing

Powerful Writing – Write how you Talk

Too many opportunities are lost because of overly complex language. Long vague phrases and verbose answers could just break a proposal.

Many feel that the more technical and high-sounding language will help make them and their company sound knowledgeable and skilled. But this causes the opposite reaction. This causes distance from you and the reader and weakens the connection that was developed during the sales process.

Every reader appreciates clarity. Use the same style English that you use in conversation to make proposals more open and accessible.

Be precise – use shorter words “use” instead of “utilize”, “methods” instead of “methodology”

Be friendly- Build intimacy by using the active voice. Try to write at a level of grade 7 or 8 – make your writing easier to read and understand quickly.

Write tight- respect the readers time by not being too repetitive and stating clearly the main points. State your ideas up front and then use supporting statements. Keep paragraphs short and if you can use bullet points instead of full sentences – choose the shorter option.

Common Pitfalls – Many think that proposals should be written in a formal objective manner. Yet proposals are primarily sales documents. Selling is interpersonal, from one representative to another. Your proposal is a primary communication medium for you to offer a mutual agreement. These documents are written arguments and should appeal to the buyer.

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