Once you’ve asked all the important questions and decided to pursue your big idea, it’s time to create a proposal for possible partners. Depending on the nature of your idea, your pitch may vary a bit but generally, a successful proposal will include the following components.
What is a Product Proposal
A product proposal is a document that outlines the features, benefits, and objectives of a new product. It is typically used to persuade potential customers, investors, and stakeholders to support the product. A well-written product proposal should be clear, concise, and convincing, and it should highlight the unique selling points of the product. In this article, we will discuss the 10 key parts of a product proposal.
Why is a Product Proposal Important?
A product proposal is important because it outlines a new product’s potential value and benefits to the target audience, stakeholders, and potential customers. It provides a clear and comprehensive explanation of the product concept, features, and advantages, and how it will solve a problem or meet a need in the market. A well-prepared product proposal can help secure funding, build support, and gain buy-in from key decision-makers and stakeholders, and ultimately lead to the successful launch and commercialization of the product.
What goes into a stellar product proposal?
This is the idea. It needs to arrest the attention of the reader.
The Title/Tagline step of a product proposal sets the tone for the entire proposal and must capture the attention of your target audience. The title should be brief, clear, and accurately describe your product or proposed service. The tagline, on the other hand, is a brief phrase that provides additional context and highlights the unique selling points of the product. Both the title and tagline should be memorable and distinguish your proposal from others in the market. The combination of an impactful title and tagline will make your proposal stand out and get noticed.
2. Sales Handle.
2-3 sentence elevator pitch of the idea. The copy you would find in an ad.
A sales handle is an attention-grabbing statement that summarizes the key benefits of a product and entices the reader to take action. When writing a sales handle for a product proposal, it is important to focus on the unique selling points of the product and how it solves a problem or fulfills a need for the target audience. The handle should be clear, concise, and memorable, and should encourage the reader to want to learn more about the product. To be effective, the sales handle should align with the overall messaging and positioning of the product, and should communicate the value proposition in a way that resonates with the target market.
Outline how this product/idea will benefit consumers. 4-5 bullet points should present solid features.
In a product proposal, it is essential to highlight the benefits of the product to convince the reader of its value. Writing about the benefits of a product should be specific, measurable, and relevant to the target audience. Start by identifying the key features of the product and then explain how those features will solve a problem or meet a need for the target audience. Use vivid language to bring the benefits to life and make them tangible. Additionally, consider using statistics, case studies, or testimonials to support your claims. By focusing on the benefits, you can effectively communicate the value of the product and persuade the reader to take action.
4. Idea Summary.
This should include a compelling overview of the product/concept in two to three paragraphs.
An idea summary is a brief overview of the proposed product, including its key features, target audience, and expected benefits. The summary should communicate the unique value proposition of the product and provide a clear understanding of what it does and how it will solve a problem or meet a need for the target market. It should also touch on the market landscape, any relevant competition, and why the proposed product is better or different. The goal of an idea summary is to quickly and effectively convey the key elements of the product proposal and generate interest and support.
Where are you in the process of this idea? Have you created a prototype? Have you established a platform? Started a manuscript? What is your anticipated date of completion or desired launch date?
A timeline should outline the projected schedule for the development and launch of the product. The timeline should include key milestones, such as the completion of design and prototyping, testing and beta releases, and the official product launch date. A well-constructed timeline helps potential stakeholders visualize the project’s progress and ensures everyone is aware of the key deadlines. Additionally, it provides a reference for measuring progress against the plan and enables adjustments to be made so the project stays on track.
Who will you target with this idea? Different than your list of benefits, this section will focus on the person who will benefit from your product. What kind of lifestyle does s/he lead? Where can we find them online? How old are they?
Identifying your target audience involves understanding the demographic, and behavioral characteristics of the people you aim to sell your product to. This information can be gathered through market research, surveys, and data analysis. Once you have a clear understanding of your target audience, you can tailor your product offerings, marketing strategies, and customer support to meet their specific needs and preferences. This will help you create a strong emotional connection with your target audience and increase the chances of them becoming loyal customers. By clearly defining your target audience, you can ensure that your product proposal is well-received and successful in the marketplace.
List 4-5 competing products/ideas already in the market. It’s important to find successful comps but to greatly differentiate yourself from those ideas in order to prove the need for your product.
Finding comparable products (or “comps”) is an important step in evaluating the potential success of a product proposal. Comps are similar products or services already in the market that provide a benchmark for the proposed product’s features, price, target audience, and overall market fit. To find comps, research the existing market and look for products that offer similar functionality or target the same customer segment. Consider factors such as product features, price points, and customer reviews to determine how the proposed product compares. Utilizing comps can provide valuable insights into the market demand and competition, helping to inform and refine the product before launching.
Introduce yourself to the reader. Wow, them with your resume. Give them a reason to believe YOU are the person they need to partner with to pursue this great idea. What expertise/experience do you bring to the table? Include a photo.
When writing your bio it’s important to keep in mind the purpose of the proposal and your target audience. Start with a brief introduction of yourself, including your professional background and relevant experience. Highlight your skills and achievements that are relevant to the product, and demonstrate how you can bring value to the proposal. Make sure to keep the tone professional, but also approachable and personable. Avoid using industry jargon that your audience may not understand, and instead, focus on how your experiences and expertise can help solve the problem the product is intended to address. Finally, proofread and edit your bio to ensure it is error-free, concise, and effectively conveys your message.
Explain your current platform and what marketing power you have. Share ideas and ways you will go after your idea. Although you are looking for a partner to help you pursue this idea, any partner worth linking arms with will expect you to passionately promote your product as well.
Any samples you can provide will only help excite the reader about your idea. . . IF those samples are excellent and ready to be shared. Spend some time preparing this portion of your presentation. You need to wow your consumer but you will never get the chance if you can’t first wow a potential partner.
It should go without saying but make sure your contact information is up to date and clearly presented in your proposal. Create an email/cover letter that is professional and formatted to stand out amongst a sea of other pitches in the recipient’s inbox.
We have not discussed financials in this post because often, these discussions will come once initial interest peaked on the part of the potential partner. Don’t scare them away with numbers. Let them fall in love with your idea first.
Remember to KEEP IT SIMPLE.
Gone are the days when long and overly thorough proposals impressed the recipient. People are too busy to read a 10-page proposal. You should be able to adequately present your idea in 2-3 pages. If you can’t interest someone in you and your idea through these 10 simple components, it’s time to go back and refine your idea.
Download a simple proposal template PDF here -> Sample Proposal
Want more information? Check out the links below:
What do you think is the most important component of an idea pitch?
Before getting her dream job as a stay-at-home mom, Jessica Wolstenholm worked in the music and publishing industries for over 15 years serving major labels and publishers in marketing and brand management. Although her transition from the corporate world to the playground has been quite an adjustment, she’s learning to love the juggle of home life and various entrepreneurial projects that allow her to keep creative juices flowing. With an extensive background in product development in which she helped artists, authors and speakers take their dreams from concept to reality, Jessica could not help but apply her experience to her own ideas. Co-author of The Pregnancy Companion and The Baby Companion books, Jessica also writes to encourage moms at graceformoms.com. She lives just outside Nashville, TN with her husband and two children.