Customer Experience News & Trends

5 keys to proposals that sell

A good sales proposal should have one main goal.

Ideally, that goal is to create motion in the direction of getting the prospect’s pen on the signature line. But even when customers aren’t ready to sign off, an effective presentation moves them toward the next step in the sales cycle.

Here are tips which may create motion for any sales proposal. Share them with your salespeople:

1. Keep it as brief as possible. Weighty proposals don’t move prospects. Summarize or eliminate anything that slows the flow. Try to get rid of it if you can or put it in an appendix.

2. Create momentum. Dramatize the risks of doing nothing: “By this time tomorrow, $2,000 may slide off your bottom line if you do nothing.”

3. Show the destination. Try to sketch an exciting vision that will make the prospect want to get moving right now: “Within six months, you’ll be producing 25% more at the same cost.”

4. Put customers in the driver’s seat. It’s not enough to show where you want to go and how to get there. Show customers their role in your proposal. Make them an active participant, not just a passenger along for the ride.

5. Make the proposal exciting. Even if the presentation delivers information that is accurate and important, it may fail if it’s dull. Try to capture the prospect’s imagination and attention.

Tim Connor is a sales consultant and an author.

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