Nowadays, from job applications to business proposals, a cover letter has become the email that gets the reader to click on, open and read the rest. It must be persuasive, short and direct, without giving too much away or going on too long. Like all things in your business proposals, it should focus more on the client and what you can do for them, less on how great your company is. Yes, your company IS great and it’s OK mention that in your cover letter, but very briefly. The company you are trying to get a contract with thinks they’re great too — and that’s what they want to hear about.
We at Quote Roller want to help you use our templates to make your lives easier and your cover letters highly clickable. How, you ask? Let’s dive right in!
The old adage goes: Don’t judge a book by its cover. But that’s what everybody does. Nine times out of ten, the cover letter is the first thing the client will look at and they will totally judge you by what you say there. So it’s got to be neat and snappy. We at Quote Roller are breaking down the bits you need to include to make sure your customer takes the next step of clicking on the link or turning the page and reading your next business proposal.
What are two of the most special words in the world? Begin and end with a thank you for their consideration. Thank yous are so underrated these days, and they can truly be the cherry on top that closes your deal and gets your proposal signed. Plus, you’re obviously grateful about the business opportunity.
Next, state very clearly what you are doing. “We want to formally offer you our excellent services as a solution to your needs. Enclosed, our proposal outlines our services, pricing and the potential partnership we could have with you.”
Now, the most important part. We cannot stress this enough — Solution-Based Sales. After doing your Googling and careful questioning of your client, you’ve hopefully discovered their needs and pains. The cover letter of your proposal is to quickly (but not too quickly) and cheerfully (but not too cheerfully) present that you are the solution to their pains and how you are going to do it. While most of your cover letters can be essentially pre-written and reused, especially if you are using and adapting Quote Roller’s easy-to-use, free templates , but this is the section of the cover letter that should evolve with each client.
Keith M. Eades, the author of The New Solution Selling, describes a solution as “a mutually shared answer to a recognized problem, and the answer provides measurable improvement.“
Go ahead, put that on a Post-It and stick it to your computer or intern. This is the whole point of the consultancy business. Your clients and potential clients must know that you understand what they think are individual needs. Then you must be able to prove that you are more qualified than most to fulfill them.
And then include the needs and pains everybody endures. “In addition to your company’s individual needs, we would like to address some that you, your sector and sometimes the entire business world face. By out-sourcing this aspect of your day-to-day, you save on the cost of employing full-time staff with benefits and the huge amount of time it takes to complete these projects. Plus, by contacting us, you have our combined [total number here] years of experience in the [insert] sector. By leaving the [insert] task in our hands, yours will now be free to do other things that are also important to growing your business.”
Don’t forget to ask yourselves, are they potentially returning clients or are they new? It can’t hurt to sweeten the letter up a bit by adding something like “We were proud to work with you in the past and we hope to continue growing our partnership with you.” OR “Your company is a leader in the [insert] industry and we would be proud to add you to our portfolio of distinguished clients.”
Finally, close the cover letter with something that leaves room for comments, consideration and adjustments: “Our services and collective experience are constantly evolving, so don’t hesitate to ask us if there’s something else we can do for you and provide us with any feedback. You are a part of our success.”
Now, faithful Quote Rollers, what are your cover letter tricks to get your clients to click?
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