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How to send an email proposal to a new client (4 samples)

Oct 06, 2023Omid G
  • 13 min read
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    Imagine, you're a seasoned agency owner or freelancer. You've got the skills and the portfolio to prove it.

    You stumble upon an exciting project, perfect for your expertise. You quickly jot down an email proposal brimming with confidence and hit 'send'.

    A day passes by... then two... a week...

    Silence echoes in your inbox.

    "But I'm qualified! What went wrong?" you wonder, scrolling through sent emails at 2 AM. Sounds familiar?

    The truth is: writing compelling email proposals is a craft on its own — entirely different from showcasing your skills or services.

    In this article, I’ll walk you through how to write an email proposal and we’ll go over some samples, from different industries, you can gain inspiration from.

    Understanding the purpose of an email proposal

    Email proposals serve as a pivotal communication tool in any service-based business. These strategic messages are not just about selling your services, but they're also about forging strong client relationships.

    An email proposal serves several key purposes:

    • It's a sales pitch: Essentially, you're pitching your skills and services to prospective clients. It’s like being on stage with one shot at convincing the audience — only here, it’s via text.
    • Sets expectations: An effective proposal outlines what the client can expect from you regarding deliverables and timelines.
    • Cultivates trust: A well-crafted email proposal communicates professionalism and competence which fosters confidence in potential clients towards your abilities.

    In essence, these proposals function like virtual handshakes, they give clients a first impression of who you are professionally while outlining why they should consider doing business with you.

    The role of Copilot


    To enhance this process further for service businesses, Copilot, comes into play. This modern portal makes managing such communications easier by streamlining messaging along with other aspects like payments and file-sharing – creating that perfect all-in-one solution for service businesses.

    But we'll talk more about how Copilot helps later on. For now, let's focus on understanding each element that constitutes an effective email proposal.

    What makes a good email proposal?

    The art of crafting a compelling email proposal lies in the fine balance between clarity, conciseness, and persuasion. But what makes one stand out from another? Here are the essential components that can make your proposal not just good, but great.

    A clear subject line

    Your subject line is the first impression you give to your potential client. Make it count. It should be direct and clear about its purpose like these examples from HubSpot. Avoid vague phrases — they won't get your email opened.

    Personalized greeting

    We all want to feel recognized and valued. A personalized greeting does exactly that for your client, it tells them you've taken time to know who they are as opposed to sending generic mass emails.

    A problem statement

    This part demonstrates understanding of their needs or challenges which need fixing. Be concise yet comprehensive here — remember you're aiming for a solution-focused approach.

    Your solution

    After highlighting their problem, present how specifically you can fix this issue with your services or products. Include any relevant case studies or data showing proven success using links like this Salesforce guide on lead generation techniques.

    Pricing information

    Clients appreciate transparency so don't shy away from discussing costs upfront if possible, include pricing structures detailing value for money invested by them into working with you on this project/task/etc...

    The 'why choose us'

    This is your chance to shine. Emphasize the features that set you apart from other options, and why selecting your service will be advantageous.

    Call-to-action (CTA)

    Let's make sure your proposal packs a punch with a solid CTA, nudging the client to act. Whether it's setting up a call or trying out a trial, they need to know exactly what comes next.

    How to write a proposal email (in 4 steps)

    The art of writing an email proposal is much like crafting a persuasive speech. Greet your customer in a friendly manner and demonstrate how the value you provide matches their requirements.

    1. Start with a warm greeting

    A great way to begin your email proposal is by warmly greeting the client. Use their name, if possible, as personalization helps create a connection from the get-go.

    2. Create an engaging subject line

    Your subject line should be compelling enough to make them want to open your mail amongst hundreds in their inbox. Consider it as a first attempt at persuasion.

    3. Crafting the body: Highlight your value proposition

    In the body of your email, concisely explain how you can provide value to them over other options. This section is where you show off why they need you or your product/service over others available on the market.

    An effective strategy here could be presenting facts about previous successful projects or sharing testimonials from satisfied clients who have benefitted from working with you. Link these back-ups directly so that prospective clients can see real-world evidence of success rather than just claims.

    We’ll go over some examples of body text you can use in the section below. I’ll even show you an email proposal template I used for my own marketing agency.

    4. End with a Clear Call-to-Action (CTA)

    The final part of your email proposal should be a clear and concise call-to-action. This is where you ask them to take the next step, whether that's setting up a meeting, signing up for a trial, or another appropriate action based on what you're proposing.

    So, this approach really gives us a hand.

    4 examples of successful email proposals

    Email proposals can make or break your chances with a potential client. Let's look at five different email proposal sample that nailed it.

    1. A marketing agency proposal

    The first example we are going to go over is an email proposal you can send if you’re a marketing agency. Of course, every marketing agency is different and the types of services you offer may range from SEO, social media, paid ads, landing page development, and more.

    But, this sample should give you a good framework to build off of. It’s one I’ve personally used for my own marketing agency and it has a pretty good response rate.

    Subject line: I found some improvements you can make today
    Body: Hey [First name],
    Before you start reading I just want to let you know that you’re the only person I’ve reached out to about this. My name is [your name] and I run a marketing agency that helps clients achieve X. I got my start working at a marketing agency myself and have worked with dozens of clients in your industry. Here are some case studies (link) I’ve worked on.
    I did a deep dive of your website and found some improvments you can make right now to help boost your traffic. Here are some things I found and steps you can take to fix them:
    Problem 1: Solution 1
    Problem 2: Solution 2
    Problem 3: Solution 3
    Hope this helps! Love what you’re doing with [company name] and just wanted to reach out because I saw a lot of low hanging fruit. If you’re up for it, I’d love to hop on a call to discuss some other opportunities I see and address any questions if you have them. No pressure though!
    Have a great rest of your week!
    [Your name]

    As you can see, this email proposal focuses on delivering value without expecting anything in return. And because business owners get tons of emails like this a day (I know I do), the way you stand out is to show the person you are reaching out to that you genuinely care.

    This type of email is a bit hard to scale because it’s so personalized, but that’s the point. Doing things that don’t scale can help you come across as very personable. The first time I took this approach it took me an entire day to send just 3 emails, because you have to spend time on each potential client and find opportunities for growth.

    Out of those three emails, I received two responses. And out of those two responses, I was able to sign one of them at five figures a month! So, I know this strategy is powerful. You just have to tailor it to the type of service you provide and the ideal client that you think will benefit the most from your services.

    2. An accounting firm proposal

    The next example takes a look into the world of accounting. Accounting firms can vary widely in the services they offer, from financial auditing and tax planning to business consultancy and financial forecasting. But irrespective of the specific service you're pitching, establishing trust and showcasing your skills is key. Below is a template proposal you can customize for your accounting firm.

    Subject line: I identified potential tax savings for [Company Name]
    Body: Hi [First Name],
    I hope this email finds you in good financial spirits. I wanted to reach out personally because, after some initial analysis of publicly available financial data about [Company Name], I believe there's a significant opportunity to optimize your finances. My name is [Your Name], and I run a boutique accounting firm that specializes in [specific service, e.g., tax savings, financial forecasting]. We currently have a handful of businesses we’ve been working with for years that re in your same industry, so we have a lot of insights into how we can help you. Here are some examples of what we’ve done in the past for our clients [link to case studies].
    Based on my review, I found some insights:
    Financial Insight 1: Potential savings if you restructure XYZ.
    Financial Insight 2: Possible tax rebates due to ABC.
    Financial Insight 3: Recommendations for improved cash flow through better asset management.
    The above are just initial observations, and a more in-depth analysis might unveil even more areas of financial optimization. Our aim is not just to offer services but to become a financial partner who truly understands and improves your bottom line.
    I appreciate the financial discipline you’ve showcased at [Company Name]. If you're interested, I'd be eager to discuss these insights in more detail and explore how we can further enhance your financial health. No obligations whatsoever, just a genuine attempt to add value.
    Warm regards,
    [Your Name]
    P.S.: I recently penned an article on the 'Top Financial Mistakes Companies in [Industry] Make' which I believe you might find enlightening. Here's the link [insert link].

    3. A consulting firm proposal

    The first next example comes from a consulting firm. Just like the other service businesses we went over, consulting firms offer a wide range of services. The company started their email proposal by directly addressing the client’s needs and explaining how they could meet those requirements. They used bullet points to list their services, keeping things clear and concise.

    Subject line: Solutions for [Client's Identified Pain Point or Challenge]
    Body: Hi [First Name],
    I hope this message finds you well. Recently, while researching industry leaders who continually strive for operational excellence, I came across [Client's Company Name]. However, like every leading enterprise, I believe there are specific challenges that you might be looking to overcome. My name is [Your Name], and I represent [Consulting Firm's Name], a firm that's been pivotal in aiding businesses in [specific industry or niche] to achieve [specific goal e.g., streamlined operations, transformative IT solutions].
    Here's a brief on how we can assist:
    Service/Strategy 1: Tailored for [Specific Benefit/Outcome].
    Service/Strategy 2: Aimed at [Specific Benefit/Outcome].
    Service/Strategy 3: Designed to [Specific Benefit/Outcome].
    I believe our expertise aligns perfectly with your current objectives. But don't just take my word for it. Here are [testimonials from our esteemed clientele](link to testimonials page) that showcase the impact we've had on businesses like yours.
    I'm genuinely excited about the potential synergies between our firms. If these initial insights resonate with you, I'd love to further explore collaborative opportunities. I'm available for a call or meeting at your earliest convenience.
    Best Regards, [Your Name]

    In this case, what really set this email template apart is an included link to testimonials from previous clients on their website — this shows not only confidence in your work but also offered evidence of past success stories. In doing so, you built trust while showcasing firsthand experience without any fluff.

    4. A freelance designer pitch

    For freelance designers, a balance between showing your expertise and understanding your client’s needs is crucial. Below is a carefully crafted email proposal from a freelance designer reaching out to a startup for a rebranding project.

    Subject line: Elevating [Client's Company Name]'s brand: my vision and steps
    Body: Hello [First Name],
    I recently came across [Client's Company Name]'s branding, and the unique aesthetics really caught my eye. I don’t come across a lot of websites that have your same level of branding — it stands out in today's saturated market. My name is [Your Name], a freelance designer with a love for evolving brands to reach their maximum potential.
    While your current design resonates with a distinct personality, I've visualized a refreshed approach that might align with your brand's evolving aspirations. Here are some [engaging visuals and mock-ups](link to her online portfolio with sample designs) that outline my initial thoughts.
    If you decide to embark on this rebranding journey with me, here's a rough outline of my process:
    Discovery Phase: 1-2 weeks: Deep dive into your brand’s ethos, target audience, and market positioning.
    Design Iteration: 2-4 weeks: Crafting initial design drafts, collecting feedback, and refining.
    Finalization & Delivery: 1 week: Final touches, approval, and handover of all design assets.
    Understanding the value of time in business decisions, I'd love to discuss this vision and these steps in detail. How about a brief consultation call in the coming week? It could be a great opportunity for us to align on expectations and explore this potential partnership.
    Best wishes, [Your Name]
    P.S.: I've successfully rebranded companies in similar sectors. [Here's a case study](link to case study) that reflects the transformation journey we undertook. I believe it might resonate with what [Client's Company Name] envisions.

    In this business proposal email, you emphasize practicality by detailing actionable steps you’d take if chosen for the project along with rough timelines — giving the prospect something concrete rather than mere ideas. Also worth noting is how this email gently nudged towards arranging an initial consultation call within one week — an great way to maintain momentum while being respectful of decision-making timeframes.

    Common mistakes to avoid when writing an email proposal

    Avoiding pitfalls when crafting your email proposal can mean the difference between securing a new client or missing out on a potential opportunity. Here are some common pitfalls to be aware of when crafting your email proposal.

    Failing to understand your client's true needs

    Your proposal isn't about what you want, it's about addressing the needs of your client. To make sure you're speaking their language, do thorough research beforehand and tailor your pitch accordingly.

    Making it too long-winded

    We all appreciate brevity, especially in our crowded inboxes. Keep your message concise yet impactful by focusing on key points and cutting any fluff content. Remember: Less is often more.

    Overlooking personalization

    Clients crave personal attention — we all do. So instead of using generic greetings like "Dear Sir/Madam," take time to find out their name and use it in the greeting line, and let them know that you aren’t just sending a bunch of messages to everyone — make them feel special. This simple step goes a long way toward building rapport with prospective clients.

    Lacking a clear call-to-action (CTA)

    You've written an engaging email but then fail to tell them exactly what they should do next? That's another mistake. Always end with a clear CTA guiding them towards the desired action such as signing up for Copilot’s service-based business solution.

    Neglecting proofreading

    Typos not only damage credibility but also reflect poorly on professionalism — always proofread before hitting send. Some small mistakes here and there are okay, as they make your email look human and not written by an AI writing tool.

    Remember, writing proposals doesn’t have to be a daunting task, leveraging platforms like Copilot can simplify this process significantly by helping streamline communication, payments, and file sharing among others.

    In essence, be sure to avoid these pitfalls while drafting your email proposal. It might take a little more effort, but the rewards in terms of successful client engagements can be substantial.

    The Role of Copilot in Streamlining Your Service-Based Business

    When running a service-based business, managing client communications can be like juggling flaming torches. But imagine if there was an all-in-one tool that could make the process as easy as pie. Enter Copilot, your virtual co-pilot for starting, running, and scaling your service business.

    Copilot streamlines tasks such as messaging, payments, file-sharing, and more. It's like having a personal assistant who never takes coffee breaks. Now you may ask: how does this relate to email proposals?

    Making client communications effortless

    Email communication with clients should feel less like tug-of-war and more like tango dancing — synchronized and effortless. And here’s where Copilot really shines — it lets you keep track of conversations with each client on one single dashboard instead of getting lost in threads across multiple platforms.

    This helps make sure nothing slips through the cracks because let’s face it — we've all been there when important messages get buried under tons of other mails.

    Simplifying payments

    Last but not least comes money matters — chasing invoices might give anyone gray hairs faster than they'd wish. Copilot's integrated payment system makes it effortless to manage payments, eliminating the need for tedious detective work of matching services with transactions.

    No more playing detective trying to match payments with services — everything is organized in one place. It's like having your very own finance department at a fraction of the cost.


    Writing a great cold email proposal to a client isn't just about showcasing your skills or services. It's an intricate dance of copywriting — an art that demands practice, precision, and personality.

    Hopefully, by now, you've understood why email proposals are a fundamental component in the sales process, significantly influencing your chances of landing projects. Through the email samples we've analyzed, it's clear how they can make you stand out among the crowd.

    Drawing from a solid proposal template, we've dissected the elements of an effective project proposal. Being clear, concise, yet compelling is key. But the art of the cold email doesn’t stop there.

    You've also learned how to structure your emails from greeting to call-to-action, how a proposed solution can be conveyed with impact, and the importance of additional information to bolster your case. Every detail matters!

    Avoiding common mistakes is key. So, remember those pitfalls we discussed? They're vital to sidestep, especially in your follow-up email strategies.

    Copilot is here too — to simplify and streamline your email outreach. Be sure to leverage its potential in managing your service business. And if ever in doubt, revisit the examples and templates we've explored for renewed inspiration.

    So, the next time you're drafting an email proposal, take these insights into account. With the right approach and tools, you're on track towards winning more clients!

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