📄 Why your proposals shouldn't sell your work
Another day, another deal, another proposal shipped off to your buyer.
Your buyer is keen, they like what you proposed, and tomorrow you'll get a reply and a payment, as agreed. Nice, job well done!
Except the next day there's no reply and no payment. A week later and you follow up, but it takes days before you get a reply. And the reply isn't "Paid!" but something else, something that means your deal is not done, and now you have to go back and figure out what went wrong.
But you don't need to, because I can tell you what went wrong:
You expected your proposal to do your selling for you.
But your proposal shouldn't do your selling, that's not its job. Selling your work is your job.
This is why I never even write proposals.
Instead, when the buyer is ready and it's time to turn the conversation into a sale, I ask my buyer to take notes.
We review the needs, the solution, the price and logistics and concerns, and we create an agreement then and there, on the call.
My buyer is taking notes (and me too, of course), and once everything is listed and confirmed and my buyer agrees to buy, I say:
"Perfect, thank you. I'm excited to get started. Next up I'm going to write up my notes in a 1-page agreement for you to review, and I'll send it along with the invoice and payment details. Let me know if you have any questions or concerns."
This is far more effective, far more powerful, than writing a proposal and hoping that it'll seal the deal.
Because a proposal the way it's usually done, is hard work. For you to create, sure, but a bigger problem is that it's hard work for your buyer.
Do you really think a busy CEO is going to enjoy taking hours out of his day, just to review all the intricate details and corporate speak that you stretched out over a 7-page document? Of course not. Sending proposals like that means that you're 'selling your buyer a problem' and that's exactly what ruins so many deals.
Of course you can't apply my method strictly in all situations. Some sales require a formal proposal. Unfortunately.
But, never make the mistake of thinking that your proposal will do your selling for you.
First close the sale in a conversation, and next you use the proposal as a confirmation.`
Tired of hagglers, stalled deals, and getting ghosted?
You're not alone: everyone who sells faces that. Subscribe for a short daily email, and get better at selling every day.
Bonus: Instant download of the 📈 SFC Pipeline Habit Scorecard 👇
Want to get better at managing your pipeline and closing your deals?
Subscribe to receive a short & useful daily email, and also:
Get instant access to the SFC Pipeline Habit Scorecard, and get a diagnosis on where your sales process can be improved 👇