Does your business need to create proposals to win new clients and new deals? Like me you probably struggle with creating proposals. You want them to look great and reflect your professionalism… but you don’t want to spend hours making each new one. You probably believe proposals can help you win a new deal, but hopefully you know, realistically, that a client’s mind is made up before you even create the proposal. (Kind of like poker, if you don’t know who is the stooge, it is probably you!). I know for a fact that a great proposal can help take a deal from a competitor and can impress a potential new client. However, that is the exception to the rule.
The secret for any proposal writer is to win the deal and receive a verbal commitment before writing the proposal. The proposal is more of a formality – it needs to look professional, should seal the deal, and shouldn’t take too much time. I recently have begun using d to quickly produce a professional bid and even speed up the sales cycle.
Before Bidsketch, I used to keep a long “template” document which I would laboriously customize for each proposal. This process could hours.
With Bidsketch I took my proposal template and broke it down into manageable pieces (sections) which I then can easily combine to create a new proposal, with only the pieces I need. When I first tried it out, I spent several hours building two templates for two of my services (Website Marketing and Website Design). Each template had 10-12 sections. Now, if I am quoting a design job, I just select the design template and the 5-6 sections that are appropriate to that job.
Bidsketch has some key features
- An easily customizable pricing “section” where I can put in my pricing (project or hourly or monthly). Plus, I can create “options” for the client to choose from which increase my overall sales.
- Bidsketch emails a link to the proposal and tracks when it is opened. It handles the “comments” that go back and forth about the proposal.
- Bidsketch has a built-in digital signature function. I believe this feature increases my close rate and reduces the length of the buying cycle; it really makes it easy for the new client to make their commitment.
- Bidsketch shares great articles chock full of marketing, sales and proposal tips. I have learned a lot reading their blog. They seem committed to my success.
Some areas I would improve:
- For $29 a month, I would expect the administrative interface to be smoother and sexier. It feels a bit dated… maybe like Basecamp did 5 years ago.
- There is no undo button in the WYSIWYG editor
At the end of the day, I am grateful that now I can produce proposals much more quickly and am pleased that my proposals in Bidsketch have had a good success rate.