B2B — From Sales Quotes to Persuasive Proposals

I wrote in the past about post-sale tactics for pre-sale marketing.  In that post, I mentioned case studies and satisfaction surveys to help gather testimonials and build credibility for future sales opportunities.

A few weeks back I attended a conference and a speaker mentioned transitioning from an ordinary sales quote to a persuasive sales quote. (I prefer the term proposal.)

I thought it was a great talk and thought I’d elaborate on it and provide some personal insight asOrdinary sales quote well.

He mentioned that most companies sales quotes consist of:

  • line items
  • a brief summary of what’s included in each line item
  • prices
  • contact information
  • a logo
  • an expiration date

However, a persuasive proposal includes the items listed above, but also includes:

  • Business issues that you’re helping solve with this purchase and plan.
  • Testimonials from past customers.
  • A one-page case study featuring a past customer in the same industry.

Why does this matter?

This matters because the person you’ve met with, talked to and persuaded may not be the person that ultimately signs off on the purchase. In that case, you may have created a champion inside the company that doesn’t help your cause when it comes to their recommendation to the board, president, or CFO. The persuasive quote  provides your contact the additional firepower they need to help advance the sale with the end decision makers. 

Pros and Cons
The downside of using the persuasive proposal is that it will be longer making it tougher to fax.

However, give your fax machine a break, save a bit of money, time and paper and send it via PDF. It will allow you to add color and style to the proposal, providing a level of distinction from your old-fashioned competitors.

Remember, every interaction provides an opportunity for marketing. Whether or not you’re prepared is up to you.

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