A lot of people dream of owning their own businesses and being their own bosses. The driving force behind the desire stems from the assumption that being an entrepreneur or being your own boss provides you with a lot of leeway and free time. And so, may people are often surprised to discover that the world of entrepreneurship is paved with a lot of documents and paper trails, and virtually zero free time, at least within the first few years of establishment. One of the most famous documents associated with owning and running a business is the business proposal.
WHAT IS A BUSINESS PROPOSAL?
A business proposal is a very vital document for business owners and entrepreneurs. As a matter of fact, a lot of office workers may be familiar with business proposals, as you do not necessary need to own your own business before you can write one. Basically, a business proposal serves the function of defining a specific service or product offered by a particular company. This is the main information which a business proposal is intended to convey to the prospective (and existing) clients of a particular company, however, other information can also be contained in it such as the name and history of the company and the qualifications of the business owner which make them well suited to producing/ providing a particular product or service. Basically, a good business proposal serves the purpose of saying the following from the standpoint of the business owner:
- This is who we are.
- This is the product or service we will be rendering.
- These are the benefits of this product or service.
- This is our estimated capacity of production for a specified time.
- This is our estimated cost/expenses for a specified time.
- This is the type and amount of progress that we should have made within a specified period of time (or time interval).
- This is the estimated amount of returns to be expected on investments on this particular product or service after a specified period of time.
Therefore, it is very clear to see that a business proposal is a big part of a strategic approach to product marketing, as well as investment sourcing. It is very important because it helps the business owners communicate the particulars and benefits of a particular product/products or service/services on a document, for the express purposes of gaining investors and customers; thereby raising sales.
HOW TO WRITE A GOOD BUSINESS PROPOSAL
There are many advantages of having a good business proposal. These benefits cut across a wide range and they have a direct impact on the funding and launching of a new product or service. They also help to drive up the sales of existing products and services by creating awareness about them among investors and customers. The effects of a good business plan can be felt on the business owner and the product or service being promoted. However, not many people know how to write a good business proposal.
A good business proposal must contain information on many things. Some of those things include the following:
- A title page
A title page contains basic information including the name of the person who prepared the proposal, the name of their company, the date on which they submitted the proposal and the client to whom the proposal was/ would be submitted to.
- A table of contents
A table of contents should be added to a business proposal in order to aid navigation; particularly if the proposal is a very thorough one. This way, the client can easily see the scope of what you would be discussing in your proposal.
- An executive summary
An executive summary is needed to provide a short form or a quick run through of all the information that would be covered in the business proposal in only a few sentences. Asides this, a good executive summary will explain the reason why the business proposal was undertaken in the first place. Additionally, it should cover the company itself as well as the particular product or service that is being promoted. And it is supposed to do this in a few sentences.
- A statement of needs or problems
This section handles the definition of the needs or problem – usually, it is just one need or problem – which has inspired and necessitated the creation of the product or service being promoted. A holistic approach should be taken while introducing this problem so as to make it easy for the reader of the proposal – or the client – to relate with what you are describing. You should make it easy for them to see the problem as a relatable issue that must be solved.
- A proposed solution (i.e. the featured service or product)
In this section, the service or good being promoted has a place to really shine. Here, you can provide a solution to the problem which was highlighted in the previous section, and you must also provide a link between your product/products and service/services and that solution. At the end of this section, it is important for the reader of your proposal – or the client – to be able the view the product or service that you are promoting as the solution to their completely relatable problem.
In this section, you have to share your qualifications as the writer of this proposal. This is where you will highlight your credentials/ qualifications and basically tell the client why you are perfectly suited to providing them with this product or service which is the solution to the problem which has been highlighted.
- Pricing options
This is the section where you will list the prices or pricing options for your product or service. It is very essential to not over-price or under-price your product and services.
- Terms and conditions
In this section, the terms and condition which will govern or regulate the provision of your product/ products and service/services must be listed.
- A space of signatures on documents of agreement
When writing a business proposal, you must always leave a space where the client can append their signature on the agreement page.