The Secret Lives of… Proposal Evaluators

What’s your success ratio with proposals? 25% is average. Very few get 50%. I help government agencies evaluate proposals. Most bids that come across my desk make the same errors, use the same flawed strategies and are never accepted. And the next time, they repeat the same mistake. Here are some … [Read more...]

7 Mistakes to Avoid in Proposal Writing

What’s the main mistake that business writers make when writing their first proposal? The target audience is not clear, the format is incorrect and the tone is wrong. And, the solution doesn’t align with the requirements. So, how you can improve your proposals and win more projects that you bid on? … [Read more...]

How to Write Better Case Study Documents

As mentioned earlier, a case study is a soft-sell sales document. Its role is to highlight your abilities without resorting to market-speak and sales clichés. An effective approach to catch the reader's attention (who is frequently a potential client) is to explore how the solution helped … [Read more...]

How Many Hours a Week Do You (Really) Spend Writing?

How much time do you spend working every week? I don't mean being in the office, but actually working. You have 37.5 hours every week, but how much is actually spent doing what you're paid to do? When I say working I mean developing real outputs (e.g. content); this includes illustrations, diagrams, … [Read more...]

25 Ways to Improve Business Proposals

Writing Business Proposals is easy. It’s other activities that are hard. Your Business Proposal may be the best priced, with the right people, and the top qualifications, but, if you overlook one critical business requirement, your bid gets rejected. We want to avoid this, right? Proposal … [Read more...]

5 Ways to Increase Your Proposal Success Rate

What’s the hardest thing about writing proposals? Maybe it’s responding to RFPs under tight deadlines, submitting bids on time, and getting each part of the proposal in line with the RFP guidelines. These are all critical to getting your grant, sales, and government proposals accepted. But in … [Read more...]

Business Proposals Format, Style and Presentation Tips – Part 1

What’s the best way to format your Business Proposal? Should you use a Style Guide? I've been writing and reviewing Business Proposals for over fifteen years and, while there are exceptions, the following guidelines will help you improve the look and feel of your next Business Proposal. Business … [Read more...]

Donald Trump’s Guide to Delivering Negative Business Messages

Ever watch the Apprentice? I enjoy waiting for Trump to pull the trigger and give it to them. ‘You're fired!’ It’s nice to watch this from the safety of our sofas. We’re involved but also separate from it. And we can switch off. In the real world, it’s not so cosy. Sometimes you’re the one that … [Read more...]

Blah! Blah! Blah! Is that how your Business Proposal really starts?

I evaluate Business Proposals. I do this every week. In the last fifteen years, I’ve seen hundreds of business proposals ranging from the large Consultancies to one-man/women businesses. Part of evaluating a proposal is checking that the numbers add up but also to see if the project in question is … [Read more...]

How to Analyze the Buyer’s Mindset When Writing Proposals

One of the most difficult challenges for any Proposal Writer is to figure out what the buyer is really interested in. Is it cost? Is it value-for-money? Is it innovation? Maybe it's a combination of factors. Think of each RFP as a set of requirements that you, the bidder, have to answer for … [Read more...]