March 4, 2018 International Business
Writing an Amazing Digital Marketing Proposal
In our past lessons, we cleaned up your web presence, taught you a little about American business culture, and took you through the initial messages that will guarantee to get you to the proposal stage for any prospect. So congratulations, you’ve made it to the proposal. This means that you’re probably within the top 3-5 potential agencies for your prospective client. Larger companies may consider more firms than this, but for smaller companies it’s likely they’ve narrowed it down. So how do you write a killer proposal that will put you right at the top of your prospect’s list of agencies? Check out our tips below.
How to Put Together a Winning Proposal
We’ve talking about the questions your prospects will be asking yourself as they evaluate your agency. Here they are again.
Key Questions Your Prospect Has That You Need to Answer
- Does the agency work with companies within my budget range?
- Has the agency had success with clients in my industry? Have they had success with companies the same size as mine?
- Do the agency’s services match what I’m looking for? A startup might require some flexibility, while a larger company may be happier with an established structure and working order.
- Do I like the people on the agency’s team? Can I see myself working with them?
- Does the agency have the creativity I need?
- Does the agency have the competencies I need?
- Will the agency be easy to work with? Are they available when I have issues? Is communicating with them easy?
- Is the team’s English good enough to make communication easy? Can I trust them with my marketing materials?
- And, most importantly: will this company succeed if I trust my marketing activities to them?
Knowing these key questions, it’s not too hard to make sure your proposal answers these key questions, giving your prospect confidence that you can get the job done.
Tips for a Winning Proposal
- Make sure your proposal is written in clear, fluent English
This one is self-explanatory. Nothing says “You can’t trust us with your marketing” like grammatical mistakes in an important presentation. Use Writesaver for your proposals before sending them out. It’s cheap, fast, and real native speakers edit your documents for mistakes.
On the flip side, getting this right is a positive step towards answering the question of whether the team’s English is good enough to communicate.
- Give relevant case studies from other projects for US-based companies
Most US business owners and entrepreneurs believe that doing business in the US is unlike anywhere else in the world. And in some aspects, it is. The US spends more on advertising per capita than any other market in the world. Business owners understand this, and they want to know your firm can handle an ultracompetitive environment like the US. So highlight your results from past projects. Give firm metrics, and links to your past clients with examples of your work if possible.
Knowing you’ve worked with other US-based companies, successfully, also goes a long way to alleviating concerns about communication problems and time zone issues. So if you have this experience, definitely don’t forget to include it. This can help answer your questions about your experience, your creativity, and your competency, and give your potential client confidence that, if trusted with their marketing, you will succeed.
- Show examples of your past written work in English
Not only does this show your creativity and competency when it comes to creating ads and blog posts in English, but well written content helps the client trust you with their marketing materials. One of the biggest concerns US businesspeople have when outsourcing their marketing is the quality of English, so providing excellent examples of your work can alleviate this concern.
- Highlight your team’s experience working in English
Did your content manager go to university in the UK? Or maybe your social media manager worked at an agency in New York for a summer? Whatever the case, if your team has experience working or studying in an English speaking country, highlight it in your proposal where you introduce your team members.
Knowing your team has experience working or studying in an English speaking country will give your agency credibility give your client confidence that communication will be easy.
- Address Budget and Scope of Work
If you don’t already do this, in your proposal you should address exactly what the budget is (or range of budgets your client can choose from), and what services they will get for their money. If you can estimate number of leads and new customers (and its appropriate with your client’s needs), you should do so on your proposal. Showing the confidence to give estimates will give your prospect more confidence in your ability: in the US, measurable results are always preferred to buzzwords and clichés.
Adding a range of service options for the customer can help show you’re flexible and willing to work on the customers terms, which may be great based on their needs.
- Proactively volunteer client referrals
If possible, proactively provide client referrals to your clients. This can be done after you speak to them on a call, but definitely should be done if possible! Let your potential clients contact your current ones and hear about your service from someone who has experienced it. These clients should either be US-based or speak excellent English, and of course should be very happy with your agency and the results they’ve gotten, and be willing to spend some time talking with your potential customers (of course, clear this with them beforehand!). If you’ve done great work for your clients, chances are they’ll be happy to act as a referral.
This is possibly the most effective tip to stand out from the pack. A 20-minute call with an actual client of yours allows your potential customer to ask about all their key concerns. They’ll get to hear about the quality of your work from a satisfied customer, hear about your work process, whether you meet your deadlines, and if there are any communication issues or language barriers. Ultimately, nothing is better than a real client referral.
So, What Comes Next?
So, you’ve written a killer proposal that addresses all of the client’s primary concerns with flawless English and sent it to your prospect. What’s next? The pitch presentation of course! Learn how to deliver a top-notch pitch to US-based businesspeople in our next article.