Top 6 Tips to Write a Powerful Business Proposal

Before you begin writing your business proposal, follow these six rules to improve your writing style and to organize your thoughts more effectively.

Tip 1. Identify your competitive strengths

Past studies at Yale University claim that many decision-makers and thought-leaders advise to curb the length of your written proposals to no more than 8 minutes of reading, irrespective of its importance.

This is a valuable competitive discriminator for the proposal, especially in the Executive Summary section. You must manage those 8 minutes to express your competitive strengths to the Assessment Review Team.

a) Think like your prospect.

b) Dissect your proposal into easy steps.

c) Communicate your competitive strengths in one sentence.

Tip 2. Structure your proposal correctly

Structure is a question of control. It helps you to determine the sequence in which you intend the reader to digest your words, sentences and paragraphs. It allows the reader to digest your information in the order of importance. And it allows you to move the reader from section to section.

Simple guide to create an effective structure:

a) Take into account your target reader.

b) Collect your ideas, thoughts and concepts on paper.

c) Consider the order of importance.

d) Write a first draft and a final draft.

Tip 3. Organize your proposal

The organization of a proposal is vital. It ensures that the reader can find the information and facts quickly; it also allows you to pass out specific sections or sheets of your proposal between the assessment team for review and examination.

Tip 4. Write everything clearly and concisely

When writing your proposal, always remember that your readers might not have a lot of time to read what you write, so consciously decide to write concisely and to the point. Avoid compressing too much information into your proposal because people will stop reading it before they reach the conclusion.

Tip 5. Make sure you answer the questions

A written proposal that neglects to answer pertinent questions is the worst mistake that you can make. It's quite simple to get caught in this trap. The assessment team will rely on you to respond to their questions, should your proposal fail to answer them. Make sure you read and study your completed proposal, in case this should happen, so you can answer any pending questions.

Quite often if you fail to proof thoroughly your proposal for any missing information, it will lack focus, cause problems with reading, and neglect to address the desires and needs of the assessment team.

Tip 6. Proofing and Correcting

All of us commit mistakes, and that's why you need to re-read and proof your proposal to weed out an unfortunate errors. Simple misspellings or typographical errors can cause confusion in a proposal. Take this step very seriously. You've worked very hard on your proposal, and you certainly do not want to ruin its overall purpose with simple writing errors.


Always remember that the reader interprets what you wrote, not what you've written, so make sure your proposal's message is clear and direct in meaning.

Brian Scott is a skilled business writer who contributes to, a free website that educates writers and non-writers on the rules of English grammar and how to write better in English.


  1. What great information. I am taking a summer class about proposal writing. I had no idea that some companies have to write a request for a proposal before they get the documents they need. Thanks so much for this helpful information.

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