Several years ago, one of the big beer companies began a marketing campaign where they identified the “born-on-date” of their beers. Not being a beer drinker, I have no idea if this resonated with beer drinkers other than to know that it no longer exists in their marketing. Fresh food has an expiration date or best-when-used-by date. Many offers or discounts have expiration dates. With food, it’s about safety, with other products, it’s about urgency.
Source: Jeff Schmidt, RAB
Last week on a virtual training session about proposals, one participant shared that her key take-away was the suggestion to put an expiration date on every proposal.
An expiration date on your proposal is a time-saver and stress reliever for you. How many times have you made a presentation to a client only to follow up for days, weeks and maybe months, only to have them tell you that they still are thinking about it – or worse, they don’t respond? (I’m still waiting for Henry Inger from H.I.’s to say yes to a proposal I gave him in 1991) This causes you needless stress and agitation. Sure, we can assume because we are not getting a response that they aren’t interested, but we don’t REALLY know.
Putting an expiration date on every proposal provides you the closure to move on gracefully. If your attempts to reconnect with the client are unsuccessful, on the expiration date, you make a final call and leave a message like this: “I’m calling to follow up on the strategy we discussed last week. The expiration date of that proposal is today at 5 p.m., so if I don’t hear from you by then, I will know you are not interested, and I’ll work on a different strategy.”
Our recommendation is that your proposal expire five business days from the date you present. Not only does this provide a sense of urgency, more importantly, it allows you closure and the ability to move on stress-free.
Here’s how it might look on your proposal:
“The products, systems, and services detailed on this proposal are available to (Client) through (five business days later) for an investment of $22,000 per month.”
Knowing for sure is a lot better than waiting forever, wouldn’t you agree?