The art of the proposal: How to create web proposals that win projects | Evan Kimbrell | Skillshare

The art of the proposal: How to create web proposals that win projects

Evan Kimbrell, Director at Sprintkick

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10 Lessons (1h 19m)
    • 1. Welcome to the class!

      1:50
    • 2. First thing to do

      1:05
    • 3. Types or proposals

      14:55
    • 4. Components of proposals

      18:08
    • 5. Going over tools for improving proposals

      18:05
    • 6. How much do you customize?

      7:59
    • 7. Types of estimates

      4:44
    • 8. Our technique, in depth costs of everything

      7:40
    • 9. The class project

      3:42
    • 10. Keep the learning going

      1:21

About This Class

Writing a well-crafted, professional, and relevant proposal can be the difference between landing your dream client and spending eternity in a project-less desert.

Being a freelancer can be difficult. You have to own your craft, keep up with the latest skills and techniques, market yourself, and manage your clients. How do you find time to write proposals?

Proposals are one of the most dreaded parts of being a self-employed creative. But with the right tools and the right know-how, you can save time while bringing in more clients. Being able to create a killer proposal will get you more interested/ing leads, more referrals, and ultimately better clients. 

This class covers how to write proposals, what to include, how to think critically about your strengths, and how to use SaaS tools to save time.

What you'll learn:

  • What components should go into proposals, and what sections should be left out.
  • How to make multiple types of proposals and know when to use them.
  • How many proposals can be templates and how many should be customized per client.
  • How to build effective estimates that increase trust and transparency.
  • How to save time using online tools like Proposify and Nusii.

What you'll build:

At the end of the class, we'll get our hands dirty and actually create a proposal using the tools and techniques covered in the class. You'll walk away with a proposal that is usable and ready to send (or a generic, if you prefer).

Transcripts

1. Welcome to the class!: Hey, guys, I'm Evan Kimbrell, and I'm the director at Sprint Kick, which is a Web and mobile development studio based out of San Francisco, California This class is all about proposals, how to create proposals that are effective, attractive and, most importantly, proposals that will win you projects. I work with a lot of Web and mobile freelancers, and one of the problems I see people struggle with constantly is how do they put together a proposal and where did they even start? It doesn't really ever surprise me when I meet a freelancer who says they're struggling with getting projects, and then when you actually sit down with them and see what their processes for making proposals, you notice that it's it's completely broken. This is a common problem with technical and creative freelancers, because you spend a lot of time thinking about your craft and not a lot of time thinking about all the other things that help you bring in clients in this class. I'm gonna do a crash course on what makes a good proposal, what our options you have for making them. I'm also gonna talk about something that is equally as important as the proposal itself. It's the estimate. A lot of freelancers think that there are not multiple ways of giving an estimate. I'm gonna show you that's not the case. There are lots of ways of giving an estimate, and there are ways that are clearly better than others. At the end of this class, hopefully you will be able to create proposals quickly on the fly and hopefully close a lot more projects attached to this class is a fun little project where we're actually going to use the techniques and the tools covered in this class to create a proposal and then share it with everyone else that we can talk about. All right. I hope you're excited to take this class. I'm excited to teach it. I'll see inside. 2. First thing to do: Hey, guys, welcome back to the class. So I have an assignment for you really quickly. I want this to be the first thing you dio eso at the bottom of the skill share page. It says discussions, the clip discussions, and then you can click new post. I want you right now to go and do that and introduce yourself. You don't have to tell me a lot of information. You can just say your name or your from. But what I'd like to actually hear from you is one. What do you struggling with? And to what are you looking to get out of the class? I think this is something that helped immensely with the class. I really like to make my classes as engaging as possible. I respond to everyone, and I want to make sure that as I'm teaching, I'm meeting your goals and I know exactly what I'm trying to fix. Okay, so this is the first thing. Just go down to the bottom of the page. Do that now. Don't skip it. You can skip it if you want, but I think you'll miss out. All right. Seeing the next lecture 3. Types or proposals: Hey, guys, welcome back to the course. So in this lecture and we're gonna talk about proposals now, proposals are crucial to any development business that you run. It's really just the process by which you give a proposal. You propose a certain amount of work to a potential client. They are going to view that and either approve, deny or try to get an adjustment on whatever you've proposed to them. Now, typically, the way that this works is that when you first meet a potential new client, you're probably going to go over there, idea over whatever it is that you're trying to build and you're probably gonna start off very vague. Probably gonna talk in broad strokes will probably describe what they're doing in very generic terms. And in overtime waft you've done some back and forth, back and forth, maybe met there partners or met other people that are involved in the project. And after you've gone over more and more details and hammered out really exactly what it is that they're trying to build, and when they're trying to get it done, you will give them some form of a proposal. Now it's very rare that you'll ever get in a situation where you don't give them a proposal on going to show you here in a second, that there are different types of proposals and even in the least formal, most casual type of situation, you will most likely end up giving them some form of a proposal. And it's something that I strongly suggest you pay attention to and so wrongly suggest that it's something that you do so that you have your bases covered should any problem arise in the future. So how important are proposals? While they're quite important? Ah, in a lot of situations you can make or break a project, and a lot of situations will be working with clients who are shopping around through lots of different vendors. And so this is kind of your final opportunity to make an impression on them and show them that you understand their project of the best, and you can show them that you are proposing the best possible solution. Now. Keep in mind, proposals are meant to be shared and their formatted in a way that can easily be shown to other decision makers, um, that are related to the client or in the client's organisation. So with that in mind, it is important that you spend a little bit of time working on your proposal and making sure that you follow some basic tenants. So in this lecture, we're just gonna talk about the types of proposals. I'm gonna introduce you to the three million types, show you some examples and just kind of gray's over it a little bit, so you can kind of get an idea of when you should use which which type and what is each type good for. Okay, so the first type is called a casual proposal. So a casual proposal is pretty much exactly what you think it is. A casual is kind of an off the cuff proposal. It's something that probably doesn't bring in a lot of outside material or a lot of outside documentation. It's probably something that you did in a very quick manner. The estimate you give is probably not very detailed, and it's probably something that you do with projects that are very, very small. Now I'll show you an example. Okay, so I just pulled this up, and as you can see, this is on our old letterhead, but this would be an example of a casual proposal, and I honestly, this proposal might even be more complex in your typical proposal. But in this situation, what it up happening was we had someone who was a perspective client. Ask us a question about a potential idea, and in this situation, we gave them really what's called a casual proposal in a casual proposal. It's typically when you respond just in email, you give them some form of estimation, but it's probably going to be in a range, and then you give a modest amount of information. Now the proposal could be anywhere from one paragraph 23 or four paragraphs. The main point here is that this is just something that you kind of do on the fly. There's no real presentation value to it. The only thing you're really gonna do is separate out the lines you can see over here so they can read it more easily and maybe bolding or something of that sort. But you're not putting this into a fancy. Pdf. You're not putting this into a template with a cover page. Um, you're not even going to upload this onto a proposal site and send it to him. It's something very, very casual. Very simple. Typically will be answering their questions. Give them a very quick run down of what, exactly you think you would take, um And then give them a general idea of what you think the estimate should be. And as you can see here, we gave this person an estimate, Um, in hours, and we did it in three different ways. So they had asked to build an application of specific language, so we gave them that. Then they asked of you it in a different language. We gave them that, and they asked us about additional hours, an additional estimate to make it tablet and mobile compatible. So we added that down here. Um, this is very, very casual. This is not very formal at all. I signed off very casually. I didn't ask for a signature it and asked for a phone call. It's just something for their reference. Okay, So why would you use this? Well, typically, the reason why you would give a casual estimation, It's generally in the case that you have a request for proposal, and it is not of a large enough size that you want to spend a lot of time on it. So that's one important point. Very small projects typically are going to need casual proposals. Now. A lot of people ask if someone gives me a small potential project, especially the beginning, cause I might be starved for projects. Is it okay to give a formal estimate or something more complex? Yes, it is. OK, but you need to keep in mind that you might actually seem a little out of touch or a little out of tone if someone asked for a $200 application to get belt and you responded with an eight page PdF. That's something that you need to keep in mind a lot of the people that you work with no, or have worked with contractors before. So you need to make sure that your tone kind of matches what exactly it is that they're building now? Another thing that keep in mind with casual, casual proposals can be strategic. Now what I mean by that ah, lot of times and you give a casual proposal. What you're doing is you're kind of showing the client that Hey, this is not a very big project. It's not a big deal. Let me show you how easy it is. What you're trying to do is essentially remove friction between them and starting the project. And the way you do that is by not letting them perceive the project as huge, not perceiving it as something that requires a lot of paperwork or has to go through a lot of things before they start. The more things your client has to do before they actually start development means that they're taking it more seriously. But it also gives them more and more opportunities to realize how much money they're about to spend and realize that maybe they want to work with a different vendor, or maybe they want to change it. Or maybe they want to shelve the project so you can use casual estimation as a way to kind of remove friction. You can also use it as a way of introducing yourself to a client and saying, You know, this is the estimation for your application. If you want to go bigger or you want to really a more in depth and complex estimation, you know, show interest and weaken. Reformat it for you. Okay, so keep in mind, casual is what you're going to be doing. Ah, lot these air kind of off the cuff. Typically, they're going to be for people that you think the project is small or people that you're trying to kind of ease into starting their project. It also could be the case that you give a casual estimation to someone that you've worked with before. So keep that in mind if you've worked or someone before, it might not be worth it to give them a fancy, complex, flowery template ID proposal that might be unnecessary. They already know you the already like what you do, and they probably don't need to be convinced of it already. Okay, so the second we're gonna cover is called a semi formal, and this is something that we use pretty much all the time. This is actually the farthest we go, and I'll explain to you I'm in a bit why we do that. But the difference means semi formal and casual. Is that were you given estimation And you probably given estimation in their email, but attached to that you give an in depth estimation. Now, the difference is that in the email, you're essentially treating the email like your cover letter in the email, you're gonna answering their questions. You're gonna detail out what you think about their proposal. You're gonna detail out the things like the timeline, the total hours, Um, and you're gonna detail out now attached to the email. Then you can give an estimation where it actually goes into the technical. It actually goes into the granular detail of what exactly is going to be built? How much is it gonna cost and when is it going to get done? So I'll give you an example. Okay, So here are two back to back. Typically, as you can see in the semi formal, spent a little bit more time with mawr information, gave long explanations, gave a lot more information about their project and in a lot of times gave my personal remarks personal thoughts about the project. Now, in a casual proposal for someone I've never worked with before with a small project, I'm not gonna spend a tone of time thinking about their project ways that it's going to be successful or ways that it can be successful or my thoughts about how it's going to fare and then more general ecosystem. All of that's kind of unnecessary. If you spend too much time on casual proposals, you can kind of get turned into a swamp. So in this situation, yeah, I just gave Mawr information here. I asked for clarifications in this estimate, and then the bulk of the estimate was actually explaining how we do our development explaining address and then explaining some of the other issues that arise things like graphic design, things like what it's going to take to put this in tablet or make it tablet compatible or make it wet or mobile compatible, then attached to it. You can see that we just gave actual estimates that are in detail, and so this is would be an estimate Now this estimate by itself is just talking about the work that's required. It talks about the hours it talks if it just gives comments, it's nothing way too fancy, but it is very, very specific, so semiformal as you can see, very it's casual in a sense, but its formal innocence and that's why I call it semi formal. It's formal because you spent time thinking about their application and its formal in the sense that you actually spent time making a comprehensive estimate and sending that to them and showing them on a granular level. What costs? What what takes what time. But the casual side of it is that it's all done through an email, right? You're sending it to them directly to their email. It's not mailed to them. It's not in a power point presentation. Okay, so now I'm gonna give you a quick introduction to the last one. OK, so the last type of proposal is a complex formal. Um, Now, this is something that we don't actually do ourselves. And we'll talk about this in a separate lecture. Why we pick the type of proposals that we dio now you've probably When you think of proposals, you probably think of these complex formal. Typically, what the's are are these air for large projects thes air more often for projects that require multiple people to buy into the project. Now what I mean by that, if you're talking to your client, that's one person. Typically, when you give a formal estimate, you're gonna be assuming that they're not the only person who has to say yes before you start the project, it could be them, plus their partner. It could be them. Plus, their project team could be them, plus their boss. So if that's the case, you might want to give them something that's fancy or something they can show off and something that they can feel better about presenting to other people. Now a formal estimate and the reason why I call it complex slash for millions because it's it is formal and that it's gonna use a template. It's music cover page, but it's also complex and that it gives the most level of detail you possibly can. Now. The times you would use a formal complex again would be if you thought the project was large enough to warrant making such an in time investment. Writing a formal investment can take a serious chunk of time. I've done them before. We took 1/2 day to put together. That's a lot of time that you could've been spending on something else. So it's on Lee, usually used in a situation where the projects either very large or it's a project that's medium size that you are confident you can close. Now I'll give you an example. Okay, so here's a great example of a complex estimation Now in this example actually brought up one of the digital firms that we had previously gone over when we talked about other studios and the Web presence is that they choose in the messaging that they choose to represent themselves. So this farm was called Octa, and this is actually an old estimate that I have the privilege of faring. Um, but what you can see here is it something that they spent a lot of time into. You could also notice that it's gonna be branded and you'll notice that it has lots and lots of pages to it. I think in this case we have 10 pages. So this is something that you'd expect with a complex formal multiple pages, separated as a. Pdf probably has graphic design involved, probably has lots of supporting and lots of auxiliary information attached to it. So, as you can see here, when we jump right in, we even have pages that have absolutely nothing to do with what the application was asking for, has nothing to do with the scope of what we were getting, a proposal for what it is. It's quite literally an introduction, um, from the CEO and then an introduction to what the firm does. And then as we move down farther, we get a little bit more specific as to what exactly it's going to be doing. And we start working with timeline and more and more details. And then we can talk about budgets and then the very end. We have attachments or we do things like references, contact, um, and core team. Now, keep in mind all complex formal proposals are different. We're gonna go over in one of the next lectures. How, exactly you can put together one of these proposals. Do it cheaply, Do it easily and without a ton of headaches. But you can do it whatever way you want. There's a lot of customization. There's a lot of different ways you can do it. There's a lot of unnecessary fluff involved in the process. You're more than welcome to cut that out as you see fit. Okay, guys. So now you should be familiar with how proposals generally work. There are some other exceptions out there. But generally they're gonna fall into these three buckets. These are the three that I suggest you focus on. I suggest you familiarize yourself just a little bit before you jump into the client. Ah, relationship game. When you do start meeting with clients, they will start asking for proposals. So you need to be prepared with what you're going to show them what information you're going to include. And which of these three do you think is appropriate? And which of these three do you think fits? What? You're trying to sell the best? 4. Components of proposals: you guys will come back to the course. So in this lecture, we're gonna talk a little bit more about putting together complex proposals. Now, remember, complex proposals are the proposals we looked at in a previous lecture. Those are the ones that have multiple pages. They're the ones that are typically going to be made for larger projects or projects that you take more seriously. Now, every single one of you out there is gonna have a different strategy when it comes to proposals. And that's perfectly fine. I would suggest that you find what works for you, but there's probably going to be a occasion or a situation where you're going to want to make a formal long form proposal. So in this lecture, we're gonna cover what exactly goes into those what you should expect. What are some of the optional things you can include on gonna wrap it up and I'm gonna show you some tools that you can use to make the process go a lot smoother. OK, Do you remember from the previous lecture where I showed you an example of a formal proposal that we had received? All right, I had received a very long time ago. That one was from October. I'm gonna pull it up real quickly to give you a refresher. All right, so here it was. Now, this is a great example of what a formal proposal looks like. It has all of the same sections and all of the same kind of formal attitude that you would expect out of a formal proposal. I just want to bring it up to give You are fresher of what I mean when I mean by formal proposals. These are the ones that you typically give to corporate clients or big projects. Now, pretty much in every single case there are going to be at least six things included in the proposal. And I've listed out the six that you almost always will see. And they're things that I suggest you always put. Now there's a couple other optional things, and we'll talk about in a second. But these are the absolute minimums that you should include. So the first thing is about you. Now, if you saw that on the previous one, they have an entire section about who they are, how they work, what they choose to do. How they like to present themselves in a little bit of information of who they've worked for before. Now the reason why you add this is you need to give your potential client some idea of who you are as a person. Now, having a human element is always a good thing. If they have the feeling that this proposal was churned out by a robot on and it says nothing about the person that is proposing it, or the company that is proposing it, they're going to be much less inclined to feel attached to that person or to that proposal . It kind of comes off as cold, transactional, almost entirely to business related. So a lot of times what we see is people will include information about them. It says, Hey, I'm a person. I am a real This is about me and often this is used as an opportunity to kind of highlights some of the good things you've done some of the things that you would normally brag about. Some of your resume top threes. Now, typically, what you'll see is this is going to be a page. If it goes over a page that's excessive, okay, that means that you're kind of distracted. That means you really need to hone it in. You shouldn't be talking about yourself that much too early Now. You could also have it assure as half a page. That's perfectly fine. If you want to keep it shortened, condensed, and you want to push off more information later into the proposal. I generally suggest you go with the industry standard, which is one Okay, now it's the second component worth discussing is an overview of the project. Now I listen about you at the top is number one because typically this is something you're to see at the very beginning of proposals. Now it's obviously not always the case. Sometimes you'll see that the very end as an afterthought but typically wanted at the beginning because you want it to be something that your client reads first. If you put it the very end and you put all the information about the project in the middle , there's a very good chance they don't even get to the end. And you wanna be able to frame the way that they look at this proposal by explaining to them how good you are and all the things you've done and things about you, so it's a good idea to put it first. Now, the second component is the overview of the project. Now, this is something that you might have noticed that some people leave out. And it's something that I strongly suggest you put in. What you're doing in an overview of the project is you're gonna put something that is, it could be a paragraph. It could be two paragraphs. You could even be as long as a page. What you're doing is you are pitching the project backed to the client. When you give an overview of the project, you're trying to show them that Hey, I know how your project works. I know what it is. I know what your problems are. I'm pitching it back to you to show you how well I understand your project now. Obviously this combat fire and a lot of times what you'll notice is people will shorten it because they just simply do not know enough about the context of the project that they're going to be working on. And that could be kind of tricky if you make it too short and too un detailed. It can actually have the opposite effect where it seems like the person simply doesn't know anything about the project at all. Now, now, if you're already in the mix and you've already been taking in clients and doing some development work, you probably know that a lot of times will be submitting proposals. And you don't really understand who the target client is, what they do. How does this project fit into the wider context of their company? So that was usually tricky. And that's something that you might have to do some background research to get right. You might have to go to their website, read about them, get a better understanding of what it is you might need. You incorporate more questions about, like, Why do they want to make changes, or why do they want to build this? What are the issues that they're facing? One of the issues that they're trying to fix, like asking them at the end of your correspondents whether or not you have all of your assumptions correct? Just saying, Hey, can you help me for a second? This is what I think. The problem is just correct me if I'm wrong now. Third component, you'll see that I strongly suggest you add is how you work. Now, if you are someone that's going to be using agile, this is a great opportunity to explain what that is and why it's a benefit. Now, this is something that works out for us. Really, really well, because being able to explain agile is a great opportunity to explain all of the benefits of agile. Now you need to be able to explain what the benefits are to have this kind of bonus effect . So it might be something that you need to practice if you are going to work in an agile manner. Now, if you're not gonna using, agile or you are going to be using at some of the other things that are good or efficient about the way that you do work, this is where you're going to describe your individual step by step process. You explain how you intake information, you're gonna explain how you're going to be updating them. You probably will explain what technology is you're going to use. This is where you typically will explain what your philosophies are about work or what strategies you personally like to use Now, how you work is almost always a sales opportunity. This is where you say that we are sophisticated and cutting edge. Or you say I use common sense when I do my work schedule, where my work schedules really relaxed or it's really professional. This is typically somewhere where you're going to try to put in some form of your individual messaging. And previously on the course we talked all up and down about picking What message works for your target client base on and picking What matches you yourself, who you are. What you want to get out of this. Once you figured that out, you'll be able to start working this better. So plan on. You know, your first couple complex proposals. It might be something that you're kind of making up on the fly when it comes to how you work and how you see you work. But don't waste this opportunity to explain your process. It will also help with communication so that when they do accept your project, they will understand what are the next steps. It's not something where there in the dark, constantly asking you. What are we doing next? Okay, so timeline timeline is pretty obvious. This is where you just list off how long the project's going to take. This is something that if you leave out, I think you make a pretty big mistake. If you're giving someone a complex proposal, it should be complete. You shouldn't be sending off a well polished PdF. That doesn't say how long this project's going to take. Unless in some weird situation you have a client who absolutely doesn't care about the timeline. I think even in that case, you probably want to give them some basis of How long do you think that's gonna take? And maybe you can use a range. Personally, I like to get as detail is possible timelines. But obviously be mindful of the fact that you can hamstring yourself. You can actually set yourself up for failure if you give too much detail, and then you get into the project and realize that a lot of that was inaccurate. It's very, very hard to forecast these things, so try to be as detailed as possible as you can at the same time. Don't make any estimates. You think are gonna be a problem later. So the 5th 1 obviously is price. And if you listen to previous lecture where I talked about how we break down our estimates , I obviously suggest that you try to break down your price as much as possible. When you give a complex proposal to someone, they're going to send it to other people. People are going to see that, and the number one page they're most interested in is Price. They're gonna look at that. They're gonna try to dissect it. They're going to try to pick and compare your sections of other people, so try not to be too vague. Se of one development firm that sends a proposal says this project is gonna cost $15,000 that's it. They just give a line that's a total project or you have another one compared to that where they say the same thing 15,000. But they break it down and explain what section costs the most. What individual technology integrations gonna cost the most, or what specific actions air tasks are going to take up the most of the budget? In that scenario, you're almost always going to go with one that give you more clarity gave you more information. You're gonna feel more confident about that person. There's always kind of a negative association with. People are too vague when it comes to estimates. If I give one big price or just to prices early, broken down a couple ways as a as a client, they might feel is if you're trying to pull something on them or trying to hide costs that are either outside of their budget or you simply do not know enough about to give a realist . And if that's the case, and if it is the case that you don't know enough to give a real estimate, you shouldn't be making a complex proposal to begin with. You should be getting more information before this step. Now Number seven is next steps, and I think this is something that's crucial, and it gets left out almost all the time. Next episode, something you put in the very end. You say If you accept this proposal, this is exactly what we're gonna do. This is where you talk about what your payment terms. That's the way you talk about what when you need payment in regard to when you work and when you're going to deliver it. This is where you're going to tell them what deliver Bols you need specifically if you need graphic design files, This is where you tell them exactly when you need it. This is really, really helpful because a lot of times people say yes, this is great, let's start but they don't know what's gonna happen next. So next steps helps them say, Hey, we're ready to roll. Um, we can start working on this as soon as you give us the green light and you want them to have that feeling. You want them to feel as if it's just up to them. Everything's ready to go now. The last thing is disclaimers, and this is just something that you will get better at over time. Disclaimers will be kind of all over the proposal, but this is really where you'll say things like if this changes, then the ESM it will change, or if this happens in the timeline might change. And basically you just kind of protect yourself in the case that you make a you make a statement and it doesn't end up being exactly true now the most important thing to put a disclaimer for in my experience. So it's very, very important when you have a price you say on the price page. If any new features air added or any process in this proposal is changed, then we need to re evaluate the price because that will also change. You would be surprised how many clients don't actually realise that and don't actually know that this project that you're this price you're giving them covers everything they could possibly imagine, and not just specifically what they described to you. So you need to make sure that you include that other things worth putting disclaimers on. I would say it's really important on the timeline if you say that if you identify any type of integrations or technologies that you're not 100% familiar with, it's worth putting a disclaimer saying that. You know, your timeline is based on you assuming that it's a reasonable and easy to implement, and if it ends up being the case that it's not that you would say that it could be the case , that timeline is delayed just so they know that there's a couple little sections in this project that could potentially blow up and become something much, much larger. So if you have a client who has a strict deadline, a strict kind of a strict timetable for this project, and you put that that signals to them that hey, this is a project that you cannot time perfectly, doesn't matter. Who else is gonna make it? Just different technologies. You always run into problems, and you'll always potentially end up taking more times. That's something that you need to plan for in your own kind of project timeline. All right, and quickly, we're gonna wrap up with what are some of the optional components of proposals. You probably see this if you've ever gotten a lot of estimates from firms, you've worked with a lot of freelancer. These air, the two main ones that identify that are worth considering putting in. But it really just kind of depends on who you are, how you work, what your situation is, so we'll cover these pretty briefly. So number one is case studies. This is something you'll see a lot of time. You'll see these long pdf's, and sometimes it will be a 10 page PdF and five pages will be case studies that they've attached Now. Case studies are a powerful tool for convincing your client that you know what you're doing , and you've worked with really strong, reputable brands or even just to show off what you're capable of. But now the question of whether or not you would add a case of the into your proposal really, really just depend in my personal opinion. It's very rare that I've seen case studies be added to a proposal, and it's actually a benefit. Typically, what it ends up doing is it just bloats. The proposal makes a proposal way too long. It makes the odds that your client finishes the entire thing much, much lower, and a lot of times it's just, frankly, a distraction. I love case studies. I think they're great. I think it's something that you need to put on your website, or you might want to put it somewhere in a PdF or a package that you delivered to clients that are interested in your portfolio are interested in who you are and how you work. But not specifically asking for a proposal yet. The one exception to this where I've seen Casey's work, while it is where you add one or two case studies that are specifically relevant to what they're doing. So if you're trying to build an application and you worked on one previously, that was very, very similar and a number of different dimensions, then it's absolutely something you could add. You could say we built this project. It worked out so well this year. If the client said this about it, they're so happy about us. This is clearly something that we've worked on before. That is a very, very powerful thing. If you can do that now now, what you need to be careful, though of is adding a case study that has nothing to do with the project. If you had a case study, there's nothing to do with the project and you actually will have a problem because it's a distraction and also shows that you probably don't understand their project very well. So case studies you can add them if you have some, but make sure that it's relevant. If it's relevant and it's really, really elephant, then it will be good. But if it's not something that's relevant to what they're building our at least the relevancy is not obvious. That it's actually going to attract it's actually ends up making it look like the proposal you gave them is not very customized or that the person who made the proposal didn't didn't really think about what they were delivering very much at all. OK, so the last thing is development contracts. This is the last thing you will see quite frequently. A lot of times in proposals firms or freelancers and developers will add in the contract into it now. The reason why people do that is they think it's a convenience, right? So if someone's happy about the proposal, they say, yes, this is great Then they have the contract right there, ready to go. I emphatically say, No, don't do that. It's not something I've ever seen Work. Well, What ends up happening is you have a five page proposal. Six paise proposal on your development contract could be 4 to 5 pages. You've doubled the length with some really, really wordy legalese attachment that doesn't add value to your proposal. The point of your proposal, it convinced the client that you are the best option for this project. It's to convince them that you know, you're doing you thought about their project, You have the necessary skills and potentially you've done it before you an attic, A city adding a development contract doesn't do that. It distracts from that development contracts or something that you're gonna discuss once. You've already got to the point where they say yes, I want to work with you. One of the problems of development contracts is that people naturally are going to have a mild allergic reaction to contracts. Have you ever seen a contract and signed it? How often have you signed a contract yourself where you felt completely at ease when you signed your signature? That's because contracts are complicated. Contracts include a lot of things that are not easy understand. And a lot of different use cases air baked into that that you've never heard of. Um, and you don't know what you're signing up you're signing yourself up to when you're giving them a proposal. You do wanna minimize friction. The way you do that is by limiting how much unnecessary information you give them by making it easy for them to get back to you by making it easy for them to know what exactly starts next. What are the next steps and exactly what you need from them Now? Adding a development contract just is the opposite of that. Now, all of a sudden, you have a proposal that could be read in 5 to 10 minutes. You had a development contract, and it's gonna take some 30 to 45 minutes to completely read it and understand it. It just doesn't It doesn't make sense. Um, it's really, in my opinion, an inappropriate thing to add, but don't be surprised when you see people do it. 5. Going over tools for improving proposals: Hey, guys, welcome back to the course. So in this lecture, I'm just gonna talk a little bit about some of the tools that are out there that are available to you for making good proposals. So if you followed the last lecture, recovered some of the components that are in complex proposals, it's all pretty standardized. And and typically, when you have something that's very standardised that lots of people use, there's usually going to be a lot of tools out there. Now if you listen to the other lecture, we talked about how we do it at Sprint kick. We don't actually use complex proposals. We don't actually ever put these together. But if you wanted to make complex proposal and you planned on using that frequently, and maybe that's something that you're using is a competitive advantage, it is worth knowing that there are some tools out there and how to acquaint yourself with them. Now there's a bunch of them out there, and I've worked with a lot of them, and Everly selected two of the ones that I think probably fit most people's needs. These the ones that have the correct feature set, have all the things you want and don't like to add in a bunch of stuff that you don't really need. Also, the price point on these they're much, much better. These are all gonna be SAS tools. So you're usually gonna pay $20 a month there $50 a month there, $100 a month. Some of these things get really, really expensive because they know that their customers are typically agencies. And they have large budgets, these air better for freelancers. And they also have free models that you can use. So there, to that I want to highlight the 1st 1 is propose. If I and this is by far the best one that I've used for creating complex proposals now, the reason why I like using them is one they're cheap, but to they also have embedded templates. Now, a lot of you out there gonna want to start making proposals right out of the gate. And you're not gonna have custom designed for your proposals. Will they have templates that are rather good. Good enough that they can get you, Um, kind of a quick start when you start, and then later down the road you can start working on Mork custom versions of your proposals. Thes platforms also integrate your own custom design. So when you do get your own design, you can bring it in and work with it. Okay, so the way that proposed fireworks is pretty easy. You put together your proposal just by blogging in and creating a new proposal. You can use a free trial if you want to. You can also just use their free version, which limits how many proposals you can have that are active. What that means is that if you create a proposal you sent it out on your client accepts it . That proposal is no longer active, so you're not gonna get charged or you're not going to have your account upgraded because you closed a proposal and only cares about the things that are currently active, meaning that they're finished, they're out there and people are actually using it. So the way that you create proposals in here is you just start by creating your own proposal. They give you, they give you information templates, which is really, really helpful. So what you can do is you can pick whatever information template you want on? Basically, What that means is that they're gonna pre load all of the text based off of one of the templates. And you can pick between really anything. They have all sorts of different types. Really, Any freelancer has a template that you can use. I'm just gonna use this as an example so you can fill out your basic settings in this case will use example company. But usually you can add your own client. And when you add your own client that you keep track of all of the proposals you send to a client, you can see the completion rates for a client and the views and pretty cool analytics will cover that Miss. Second, we'll just say example Company. You can choose to put a proposal, dio or not. The reason why you choose, but a proposal being dio is that their system allows you to remind your clients that it's due in a couple days now, typically, development firms will put due dates on their proposals. It's not really like a hard deadline. The reason why we do that is because if I make an estimate for your application, I typically only want that to be valid for, say, a week or two weeks, because after two weeks, it might be the case that I need to reassess. What exactly is going to go into it? Things could change AP. Eyes could change. Technologies could change. The scope of the project could change, so we try to generally limit the validity of the estimate. It's only useful in the case. When you make an estimate, you don't put a due date on it. But someone a year or two years later comes back to you and says, Hey, I want to work on this project. You gave me this price. That's why we put due date so we can just use a theoretical date, all right? And then we can get into their proposal editor. So I had actually gone through this already and picked a theme, and so it gave me a theme that I can use. And as you can see here, the theme Ah is kind of Ah, it's kind of a light and fluffy and colorful theme. I like using that kind of design aesthetic sometimes. Now, if you wanted something to be a little bit more serious, they have other themes on. You can swap those out really easily, and if you want to swap out a theme, it's pretty easy. Just double click anything at a theme back, and then it's just appeared swap theme. They've actually have a tone of different templates that are all pretty easy to use, and there are pretty aesthetic. You can do a lot of modification to these themes to make it look more custom, and it could help. You kind of bridge the gap between now when you're using a template generator in the future , when you have your own design, but there plenty of other options we can use. So this might be something that's a little bit more serious. Something that you could send to a different type of client really just depends really just depends. What you want really depends who you're sending it. Teoh, um, just kind of depends, So we'll swap back to the original theme. So and it is you could see over here. It actually has all of the different sections preloaded for you, and there's actually a preloaded from the template that we chose earlier. Think it was responsive design and So they've given you a lot of the components that we actually covered previously, which is great. And then, if you wanted to add anything you want, you can add or remove whatever it is. So friends We didn't wanna have team bios that might be a little excessive. We can hit, remove and then remember what we said about contracts. We can actually remove the contracts because otherwise, as you can see, actually taking a Thanh of Different a ton of space. So right here with the sample contract. And that's entirely too heavy, too dense for a proposal. See how long it coz so you can take that out pretty easily? I would go ahead and remove sample case studies, of course, unless you wanted to have your own sample case study. Um, you know, the rest of it's pretty easy, so it gives you everything you would need up here. It gives you things like where we talked about overview or introductions or what you dio. You can use this whatever way you want. You can change the names. You can change the headers and change all the text. You could insert videos. You can insert images you can do your own text, do all sorts of things. Graphs, tables, shapes. You can even add things like different signature boxes. If you'd prefer that people sign, um, their initials So like right here I could choose between me and the client, and you guys have ever used these online signature systems. They're a little bit difficult when using a track pet, customizing them upfront relatively easy. All you really have to do is just add your own image. You could just swap it out pretty easily so you could just hit Image tab over here, and then it Just ask if you want to drag and drop use anything from their library. I've already added something so we can just use our logo to give you an example. Just drag. Drop it over here. And if you're worried about it being aligned, you can add grids, and that helps you a little bit. Okay, so these work pretty much like any other editor you've seen out there. This is just helpful because it's already pre loaded with all the sections that you need. What's also great is you can modify certain sections andan save them into your content library through here, content library and then use them as recyclable parts later. Now also, what's interesting about these online proposal generators is that you can do things such as insert of video. And if you insert the video now you think the if this is a pdf you're sending to someone, how are they going to see the video? Well, actually, this is all gonna be handled online. So when I send my proposal, it goes to the client because I preloaded all the information into the program. Um, and they open it up in their Web browser. So it's actually a Web proposal that allows them to easily share it without having to send an attach attachments, but also allows you to use other type of multimedia that can actually help in a lot of ways and make it seem more seamless. I typically like doing this because, especially if you doing work online, people expect you to be Web savvy, and this is something that is not only convenient but helps a lot, but also makes it look like you are tax savvy yourself. One of the biggest actually advantages to an online proposal generator compared to like. What we use is that you can actually handle signatures online, and that's actually kind of a big pain with us. We have to send emails with attachments with the temple, because remember, we use a semi formal estimate style. Um, and then what ends up having to happen is we have to use a separate system for making signatures here. All you do is you send it and you can have a sign here box, and then you can even pre load your own signature if you want. Teoh. That's my beautiful scribble, Um, and then it'll handle all of that for you. That's a huge, huge help. In general, though, if you're making a proposal on the proposal has nothing that's binding in it. You don't usually sign proposals. That's not really something that's necessary, especially if you don't have the contract attached. You're going to the contract in a separate stage, and this is what I suggest you do. Then you have them signed that they don't necessarily sign the proposal in the contract. You will stipulate what is the work being done? You'll stipulate. We'll stipulate the price. You'll stipulate the timeline. Typically, you just attach these estimates to the actual contract. The contract will say attacks in Exhibit A and Exhibit B. These are the binding terms of the contract. Okay, so I'm gonna show you one last thing. I think that's pretty cool. Um, that you can do with online proposal generators. You could do things like snap shotting, um, with snap shotting. What you can see is you can watch a timeline of what's happening with the proposal. You can see how many times have opened it. See you. What? You know what sections they're stuck on or who signed it, who hasn't? It's very easy to make this work with teams you can just click over on team and with Team one ends up happening is you can send it to multiple. People say you're working with a subcontractor or say you're working with a partner. You can key them in and have them sign as well. That's very helpful. If you could have your own little client portal over here, where you can keep track of everyone, keep all their information. These are always fakes for making us a demo, but the last thing I think is what's really interesting is that you can do metrics. Um, and this is actually something that can be rather helpful. So what ends up happening is when you're sending proposals often and at a high rate, these will keep track of how many get closed, as in how Maney were accepted. And you can use that kind of as a feedback process to how to improve what you're doing. What's also interesting is that you can see things like view, metrics and with the metrics. What you can do is you can see how long they've been looking at it. You can see when they opened it, and you can see how many different people are looking at it. That's helpful for you. It's helpful if you didn't know if they're getting stuck. If you know if they're not even spending a lot of time on it. It's actually a great way of testing whether or not they're shopping around the proposal, because if they're not, if they're looking at your proposal, but not for very long, that could indicate to you that they're looking at a lot of different proposals. This is all helpful. This is all a lot of kind of information that can help you in many different ways. So propose. If I is one of those ones that I think is probably the best out there right now, I'll update the courses. I find ones that are better on. And I could kind of refer you guys to those. This one has a free trial. You can use the free trial. They also have a free ver. When I suggest a software we will as a group negotiate a much lower rates. Everyone in the group will get something like 50 to 75% off. Makes it a lot easier. What other thing as an alternative, I thought also was rather interesting was one called new C and new C is in U. S ii dot com. This is an alternative. Honestly, because if you're not happy with propose if I or New see you can just Google. If you just go to Google and say proposal, generator or proposal software tool, there's just a whole page of them. And then just pick which one you think, um, is right for you. They're all pretty much the same, except for these two seem tohave better feature set for a lower price. So with newsy, it's very similar to they display everything as one long page that you can view through. They also make it really simple for you to proposed multiple options. That was one thing that I think that new C does better. You can do an estimate in a timeline with a price, and you can break it down. But then you can also give multiple options. So then, at the very end, they can pick which option they accept and tell you that they have accepted it. It's also easy with them because all the person has to do is request more information, reject or accept, and then you can cut. Then you can have an iterative process where they rejected. It comes to you, and they'll give you information about why they don't like it. You can change it, send it back, and eventually get to the point you're accepted. That's all very helpful for documentation. It's all very helpful if you run into problems down the line. Okay, guys. So those are two really, really helpful. Easy to use. Um, tools out there not gonna break the bank. Definitely. Something can help you at the very beginning it with a little bit of effort and a little bit of customization. You can make these really, really help in terms of sales and conversion. It's a good stopgap from now and you where you need proposals, but you don't want to design it yourself. And you don't want to spend a lot of time working on your coffee writing, um, to use something like this and then eventually you can become more professional with it. Add more custom designed, more custom information. The last thing I don't leave you guys with is if you're familiar with 99 designs, that is another opportunity with you. Do finally want to get to the point where you want to get a proposal designed specifically for you if you're not a designer and you don't have a designer that you want to pay. This is also a very good option for you. 99 Designs is a contest service, so what you do is you will give a description of what you need done. You'll say I'm doing development work. I need a proposal. These the sections that I want. This is my logo logo. This is my branding. This is what I want. This is what I like. Here's an example of something that I've seen that I like. You compile all that together and you have people compete and you'll have on average, anywhere between 30 and 50 different designs presented to you. You give them feedback and they get better and better. And then you end up approving the one that you actually you like 90 designs. I actually using a lot of the things I do. Have you taken any of my other courses? We probably You probably heard me talk about it before, Um, very helpful for things like logo branding, identity landing pages, but also very helpful for proposals. As you can see, there's some people that have looked for proposals or brochures or they're all very similar , um, and come out with pretty decent products. And it's It's a relatively affordable option. Um, in the case of 99 designs, I think the minimum you have to pay is $200 if you want to pay more, you'll get more designers on and you'll get more submissions. So if you guys want me to cover 99 designs specifically, just let me know. It's something that I kind of graze upon in a lot of other lectures. If you're in any of my other courses or you've heard of it and you've probably seen it, so so there's a lot of easy options out there for you. Proposals are important. Keep that in mind, but they're not make or break. It's a good idea to have a system down. Um, if whether or not it's your own custom designed proposal and you got done at 99 designs you had a graphic designer make, or whether or not you're generating your proposals through one of these online generators, it's good to have a plan in place before you start sitting out your proposals. It's good to be used to this before you start bringing in actual business. There's a lot of benefits to using these online tools. It makes it so much simpler for you and for them, and it's also very easy to appear professional. And that's what we're mainly concerned with, especially at the very beginning, very beginning of your development business when you're struggling because you don't necessarily have the case studies that you need or the large portfolio that you are you will have in the future, or tons and tons of custom design and custom branding so that these airways that you can get around that if you want to pay, you can use 90 designs. If you want to just do a free version or 20 bucks a month, you can use propose if I or new seat those air great great ways of getting out of the beginning. All right, in the next lecture would have talked really quickly. Just some thoughts about how much you should customise in your proposals. Do you have any questions just posting the group discussion? Otherwise, I'll see in the next lecture. 6. How much do you customize?: Hey, guys, welcome back to the course. So in this lecture, we're gonna start really, really quickly about how much do you customize in your proposals? So in issue have probably one into if you've already it started issuing proposals is that you're kind of why? Probably wondering how much of the proposal needs to be custom tailor to the client. And how much can I get away with copying and pasting pre defined content and information? Now, this is something that a lot of people ask about, and a lot of you guys who haven't made proposals are probably wondering why you're copying and pasting any information to begin with. Well, the reason why is because when you actually get to the point where you are actively taking in business, you will start to notice that if you customize every single proposal, you're gonna be underwater pretty quickly. Um, with how much time would be spending on this Now there's a period of time with sprint kick where I was spending half my days sending out customized proposals, and that is just not an efficient use of time. It did get a lot of conversions, but it's not very efficient. Um, and you could definitely spend your time in other places. It'll actually, in the long run, help you more. So the question is, how much do you customize? And so I'm just gonna be a little bit of thought for myself on the subject. So the first thing I think that you should consider is just how big is the project? Right. So larger projects typically. So the first thing I think that you should consider is just how big is the project? Right. So larger projects typically. So it's kind of a paradox. Larger projects. You would think that maybe you should spend more time on them, right? And smaller projects. Maybe you should spend less time customizing them. Well, it's actually a little bit more complicated than that. You might think that how more customization is better for big projects because that's the one that's gonna make you the most money. Well, the problem with big projects is the sale cycles with those are longer takes longer for you to close big projects, and you probably see fewer and fewer of them. Now, on the flip side, small projects, they come and go quite rapidly and there's a lot more of them, so it's really up to you to decide what you think is worth it for you. Do you want to get a lot of small projects, or do you want to focus in on 3 to 4 large projects that can kind of carry you for the next period of time? So really, I think it's a judgment call. If you customize a proposal for my small project, you're very, very likely to get the project now. The tricky part about this is that it's kind of Ah, reverse scale with a small project. If you customize a lot of your proposal, your in a better position to win that project than on a big project. Now, why is that? The reason why is the convention is that bigger projects typically will have more customization. People typically spend more time on big projects. Big projects typically have a lot of competition. Now, if you're a small project or even a midsize project and you customize a lot of it really impressed the client. They might not even shop around for anyone else, and you can close that the way that I suggest you go about doing this is that you customize as much as you can efficiently and at the very beginning of your process. I generally suggest you customized more. The reason why is because that's a good tool to stick out from the rest of the crowd. But it's also something that can help you get traction early on, which is really the biggest problem when you are starting your development business. After you get your first initial clients, it's really starts become a snowball effect once you start getting referrals and you start getting more business. So at the very beginning, I suggest you customized Maura. I also suggest that you focus on customizing for smaller projects and then recognize that bigger projects and have more competition, so it might not be worth spending the time at the higher tier to compete Now. The other thing I want to point out is the 60 40 rule, and that's just what we use to kind of decide how much we customize. Let me just use it as a golden role. When in doubt, do this. If we have a good feeling about a project, we might customize Maurin a bad feeling. We might customize less, but in general, this is what we shoot for. We will shoot for 60% is either custom or tailored to the project, and 40% is copy and paste. Now help to help you understand what I mean by this. Before we talked about the sections in a proposal the components of a proposal, you notice that a lot of that stuff is not specific to the project or the client. The proposals getting delivered to so in about US section, or how we work or even next step these air all template ID things that you will include in all your proposals case studies as well. Typically, we shoot for 60% and the way that we do that is we try to make sure the balance not too much excess information that has nothing to do with the project. Typically, with a client, their attention spans are very short, and it's a mistake that you'll make. If you assume that you have a captive audience, don't assume that the proposal you sent to them, they're going to be automatically interested in it. They're going to read every single page. That's a false assumption. You need to make sure that at least 60% is custom and tailor to them, because that's gonna keep their attention span and keep them reading the pages. 40% is okay to get away with. And as you get more projects, you get more experience with your messaging as you as you tinker and Taylor Mawr. With those sections about you and basic information about your firm, those will get better and better. Your success with proposals will get better, but just in general shoot for 60%. That's the best we've experienced with attention spans. Try to put as much custom as you can. Don't be that firm that sends 90% duplicate content. As someone who has purchased software, I can tell you that it's very obvious when you get a proposal, and almost all of it is non specific non Taylor to you. And it's something that's very, very disconcerting. Even we looked at the Octa example. Previously, there were actually only two pages out of the 12 that were specific to the project, and in one of them it was an estimate, and there's only one number. The rest of it was just template. It information. Your clients are not dumb, and even if they are done, they subconsciously will recognize the fact that sections of it have nothing to do with their proposal. They want to know that you're thinking about their proposal. They want to know that you're thinking about their project, what it needs. And yet you are ready to address the problems that they have. And the way you do that is by tailoring the proposal to them and not just a generic pitch of your company. Typically, if you're in a conversation with them, they've read your website. They probably heard something of you. They don't need 10 pages of information purely just pitching you as a generic provider. Okay, guys, go forth and customized main takeaways from this lecture is just that you should try to customize as much as you can, but obviously be realistic about the efficiency of your time. You can't customize everything. So when in doubt, try to customize at least 60%. The way you do that is you focus more on their project and less on pitching you a lot of those temple, it'd pages are unnecessary, and you really need to think about whether or not that extra page that says more information about you or how you work, whether or not it's really, absolutely necessary. And the other thing is that just be aware of how big the project is that you're going after . If it's a big project, that means big reward. But it also means big competition. Also, be aware that small projects typically have less competition. You can win those much more easily if you just spend a little bit more time in them. It's a little bit counterintuitive, but it's something that I think will definitely help you down the line. All right, guys, seeing the next lecture. 7. Types of estimates: All right, guys, welcome back to the course. So in this lecture, we just not talk really quickly about what are the ways and common techniques that development firms used to give estimations of their clients. And in the very And I'm gonna show you an example of how we do it and explain to you why we made that decision and why we think it's the best way to do it. Oh, really? So there's a leap three different ways that you can go about doing this. When you deliver an estimate to a client, you want to give them as much information as possible. You want that information to be clear and easy to understand. But you also want it to be digestible, um, and something that doesn't kind of hit them with sticker shock or hit them with what we call our shock. So with that being said, there are different ways of doing it and different reasons for why people pick the way they do. So the number one way and this is probably the most common way you'll see is you get an altogether estimate Now. In the previous lecture, we had gone over a sample proposal from one of the digital studios, and I don't know if he actually noticed that, but they did a altogether estimate. They just said at the very end of their thing, $120,000 that was at no itemized sections, no breakdowns, no nothing. Now an altogether way of estimating it is a simpler way. It's easier. It saves you time. And it's typically something that you're gonna deliver to the client if you think the client knows exactly what you're delivering and there's no real discussion about what exactly you're doing and you and it might be the case that you think the client trust you already, so they just need a top level estimate. They don't need granularity now. The 2nd 2nd way you could do it is called section by section. Now the way that you would do this is you would take the estimate of whatever you are proposing to build, and you would break it down into the major sections of it. So let's say that you were building, So let's say that you're building an app in the APP has a section for, say, blogging in. It's a welcome screen Um And then you have a section for messaging other users than you have a section for, Let's say, saving notes now in a section by section estimation, I would give an estimate for each individual section. You know, it could be five sections. It could be 10 sections. It could even be two sections of It's a small application, and I would just give them that price per section. They can make a choice whether not to add it, what not to drop it. But it gives them a better idea of what sections are larger. What sections are smaller now that's kind of the in between between the other two on this list, it's kind of the Goldie Locks. A lot of people use that because it does take a little bit of time to estimate out every single section, but not so much time that you have to estimate out every single task. And that might also be something that you think is easier to explain, easier digested. A lot of people don't. I prefer to get into technical details when it comes to explaining estimates, so they like to stay section by section are all together now the final example is called piece by piece on, and now what you do in this case is you break down literally as much as you possibly can. You give estimates for every single task involved. You'll give Selva tasks for features, and under each feature, you'll show every task that theoretically would go into it. Now, piece by piece is something that naturally lends itself to agile people who run agile. Teams have to make estimates up front as to how long each feature is going to take, and that's how they determine what features to build in each batch of work. Remember what we called sprints? So if you're doing agile, it's it's a pretty natural fit. You already have a general idea of how long you think each feature and each task will take . Now, with piece by piece, you'll add in things like how long it takes to upload files to a server, how long it takes to even debug. You will add in a ton of granularity, really anything you can estimate. Now. The pros and columns of piece by piece obvious are pretty obvious. A piece by piece estimate gives your potential client mawr visibility more transparency than they would get with the other two. They know exactly what each section takes. You know exactly what each feature takes. And it tells them some things are larger than other parts. And some parts are smaller than you think. Andi, it really shows that you know what you're talking about. Now the downside can happen in different ways. One is it takes more time to is that it opens you up to criticism to your clients Know he have a semi technical client. They might actually challenge you on individual pieces if you overestimate. And if you guys have guessed it, we actually estimate ours out piece by piece. Now I'm gonna show you an example of what a piece by piece estimate looks like, and I'll actually show you a real one that we use 8. Our technique, in depth costs of everything: Okay, so here was an estimate that we had created a while back project that never got off the ground. But nonetheless, we used our usual technique for estimating this out. Okay, So as you can see on here, what we basically did is we took every single sub task and then put them under individual tasks. And the tasks are either some large feature or when you see the Bolden sections that actually Cano Tates a section. Now, remember, if I was doing an altogether estimate, you actually would just see the total at the bottom. This is all I would deliver to the client right there. Now, if I was doing a section by section, all I would deliver would be the messaging. I'd say like messaging, and I'd say how many hours it does. Then I'd say server set up in packaging. How many hours a day? I would say group messaging. And then I'd say, How many hours are associated with that now, with piece by piece. Now you can see that we actually go, and we estimate out individual tasks and how long we think they're going to take now. I obviously think this is the by and far the superior option. There have been numerous occasions where we have one clients because we used a piece by piece estimation and the people that were competing with used a section by section or an altogether estimate, and the reason why we ended up winning those was because clients actually love piece by piece estimates. And it's something that not enough people do. The reason why they love it is because even if they're not technical, they love to be able to see individually how long every single addition takes. That gives them transparency that immediately establishes trust with you. And that sets up a situation where they know exactly what it's gonna take. Took every single section in there also confident that you know what every single section is going to take. And in general, they're not expecting you to give them that much transparency. In general, our industry is very opaque. People generally will try to hide a lot of the information because they think that protects them. What we try to do is we try to show off as much as we possibly can. We found that that actually establishes trust early that helps us close sales. It also helps our clients in a lot of different ways. What they can do is they can look at a piece by piece estimation and they can pick the things they want to add and pick the things they actually want to drop. We can also do things very if you listen to the other lecture. We talked about a strategy of constant estimation. We can add in things always at the bottom. We can add in additional features very easily down here. Just put in a new section, say potential features optional task optional optional features and then just add it like normal. Create a different sub total. So they know that one is that the proposal total and the other one is the proposal, plus the optional so it makes up selling a lot easier. It makes it easier to explain to clients what's unnecessary and what's necessary. That allows the client to be more successful in general because they can save their funds from sections they're abnormally large and put them towards things that are actually smaller. Now, you think that would be a negative for you, but again, if you listen to the other lectures, and we talk about rich clients versus successful clients. We talked about tying your project to your customers. Success. That's actually quite important, right? You don't want your client to run out of money, especially if the decent size project. Now, if you want to create one of these, it's really, really simple, honestly, And in general, this is one off our secret techniques that have really, really helped us grow. People really like seeing this level of detail. They will instantly get you noticed. If you're competing with a group of other people, it really helps to educate the client. It helps a client really kind of connect with the application they're making, and it really shows off that we know what they're talking about, even if we don't necessarily know exactly what they're talking about. We've just given them a lot of detail and really something to work with. Ah, lot of times our clients come to us and we give them a really complex piece by piece estimation. They can use that to convince other people that a we know what we're doing and be, Hey, look, this is an actual concrete explanation of what we're trying to build, which a lot of times clients will come to you with Justin Idea, just a business plan or just something scribbled on a napkin. Now they see this now it's really now they become a lot more serious about it. Now, if you guys want to create a piece by piece estimation, it's really quite simple. I can include the very end of the course, a template if you want to, but honestly, it's not really that complicated at all. Typically, what we do is we just divide everything into columns on the left side. Will name tasks and attacks could be something large. Easiest way to think about this is actually just call it a feature these enemy features. With the exception of server set up in packaging, the easiest way to think of this is tasked. Our task slash features typically like a feature like Sign Up our feature like messaging. This isn't listed under attack because it is a task, but also things like server set up in packaging, even things like time you take to submit something to say, like an apple store on android store. Those are things that you can call task. So in the first column, we just list out all the major tasks. Then, under sub task, we try to give as much detail into the process of what that actually entails as we can. We don't every single time, no every task that it's going to take. That's why it's important. Obviously, hedge. When you send these proposals of people say that you know this might be a draft. Well, this might not be a finalized version and then come back to them with the final Isar and once you get enough information. But for the most part, it's not really something to fret over. So the second section tried to break down every single large task or large feature, and do as many separate task as you can think of and into the third column. You can choose between what we did here. We gave an explanation, even with more detail where we said, this is how many hours it will take on your back end back in meeting the server that handles the information to the application that we're building, and then over here, we individually described to build. This is for a mobile application. We described what it would take to build on every single platform. But you can imagine if we were just talking about, say, a site, you'd have the back end and the front end. You could divide it that way if you wanted to. Really Up to you. Typically, we only give the re columns, but in this case, the person wanted ah lot Mawr. So we actually added another column. You can also put notes on the side. These are things that are really helpful because you can put comments. You can say that you have doubts about something in the sub task. You could say we need more information about this. You could give some clarity for why a number is larger than you would think are smaller than you think. You can explain why one of your numbers might actually be zero until you get more information. Then what we typically do is we'll put another section where the client can give comments and we can just go back and forth that way. Um, and that's a very easy, low tech way of collaborating with the client. So guys really, really simple. I suggest you do it. Clients love it. It's really a competitive edge. It's something that gives you transparency. And it's something that establishes trust early, which is something that is crucial at the beginning of your business, especially when you're working with new clients. You can impress them by doing this. It doesn't really take that much time. It's something that I think is definitely worth it. You spend more time on it, but you close more deals. It's a way you can set yourself apart. So if you're doing a subcontracting strategy, I suggest talking to your subcontractors about setting up a system like this. Typically, they're pretty amenable to that. If you are developing it yourself, then this is something that I think you should consider developing as a scale. I don't think it takes that long to get used. Teoh. You just need to get used to que hedging your bets, giving rough estimates and then doing more research to give more specific estimates. Once you know that the client is pretty much on board and there's a very high likelihood that you're gonna land the project 9. The class project: Hey, guys. I wanted to go over the class project, so there wasn't any confusion about what you're supposed to dio. Hopefully, this is your first introduction to the class project. Much easier for me to just verbal explain it to you and walk you through it. So to complete the class project, all you need to do is scroll down and it's right in this tabs, a quick class project. It will take you to this page and I give you a walk through of what's expected and what the deliver verbal is. Now. The idea behind this is that you went over making proposals. We also went over what we should put in proposals and how to make them look slick. So what we gonna do in this one is we're gonna actually go and create a proposal. Now, obviously, proposals take a lot of time, and so I don't expect you to make a complete one by yourself. What I do expect you to do, though, is create one section. Now, remember, the sections recovered. Well, a lot of the sections we're not gonna be able to do because you need a project in order. Do them I'm not asking you do an estimate and I ask you to make a timeline page. But there are some things that you can do that our template ID, and you can apply to any proposal in the future. But the biggest point is I want you to get some experience doing this. So I give you some examples of sections you could dio about US scope of services. Why us experiencing portfolio? Thes They're all things you're gonna have to do regardless, and regardless, you're gonna have to build a proposal sometime in the future. So the way that you can do this, it's really pretty easy. You can use the tools that we covered in the class like propose if I or new C, You also just do this on your own. If you're somebody likes to use in design or someone who wants to design this on paper and scan it, that's totally up to you. I suggest using the tools we use for the reasons why we covered. But I'm gonna walk you through really quickly how you can get on to propose if I and set this up and then start your project so pretty simple. Go to propose. If I dot biz, you just need to sign up so you can sign up for free. You doesn't take a credit card. It's just a trial. After your trials down the unit will send you some annoying emails, but totally up to you. Once you do log in, you're gonna have screen pretty much like this. Really? Are you gonna do is just go right down a new proposal that you can pick a template. Doesn't really matter. You're gonna get a little bit of a head start, depending on the template you pick. Okay, so just get to the editor page. This is what it looks like. This is what we saw before in the class. Pick any of these sections over here and complete it. You could do overview on goals. That's pretty generic. You could pretend like you're talking to a potential client. You could explain why you're great and how you get take payment doesn't really matter. They already pre filled this. So we have to do is modify it. Another section. You could do a scope of services. Just talk about the way that you plan on working or how you've worked in the past. Or just give some information on what things you are good at and what things you don't do. Okay, so pick anything over here, edited out, and then all you have to do is go up to send, and then right here, it's gonna give you a public link. You just copy that. Go back to your skill share page, go to class Project and click. Start your project. And then right down here, just go ahead and pace that link. And now we have access to the proposal you made, and then just tell us which section you edited on. Then we can go and check that out. Another way of doing this is you could have just gone. And did us do a screenshot of it If you want Teoh for years, you on Mac, The screenshot is command shift four. Just drag and drop. Take a pic. Um, and you should be good. Okay, You have any questions? Just ask me and I'll help you out 10. Keep the learning going: Hey, guys, I just wanted to say thank you for taking this class, and I hope you learned something. I hope what I said made sense and I was clear. If you have any questions, any concerns, just posting the group discussion, all respond to you. You could even send me a direct message if you want to. I want to give you a quick word of how you could take the skills that we learned in this class and how to bring it to the next level. Learn some other related skills. So in this class we learned how to craft proposals. We use tools like propose. If I and I even just showed you how to do it in Microsoft Word, we covered what works and proposals, what doesn't and what are easy ways of looking professional. Now, if you want to learn more about being a successful Web freelancer, check out my other classes. Specifically, I have a class called Growing your Client Base. As a Web freelancer. This works for Web or mobile, but its basic techniques and strategies for going out there and finding MAWR clients on specifically getting the clients that will grow your business and fit your business profile . Another one worth checking out is managing clients as a Web freelancer. Now, specifically in that class, I show you how to get clients, keep them happy and make sure they keep coming back to you with more business. Okay, If you want to go further with your skills, check those out. Otherwise, again. Thank you for taking the course.