For a creative agency, one of their most powerful tools to win high-profile clients is a proposal or a response to a request for a proposal (RFP). When it comes to hiring an agency to do video content, such as explainer videos or animations, companies are very specific as to who they bring on board. They want a team that can understand their business, their vision and their expectations from a video. When you create an explainer video proposal, your team must be willing to put in the work and treat the proposal as your first and last chance to win the contract. The more work you put in into your proposal, the higher your chances of standing out from the crowd.
Let’s explore the different ways you can create an amazing explainer video proposal that is likely to win your potential client’s confidence.
What is RFQ and why companies send emails for it
The Request for Proposal is an important document that can help companies choose the right agency to work with.
Companies send out an RFP in a bid to attract potential creatives to tackle their explainer video. When companies send out these RFPs, they expect the response to include ideas that can resonate with their business goals and identity. Moreover, for creatives, the explainer video proposal is a good way to set realistic expectations with the client while also giving them better or more feasible ways to achieve their goals with an explainer video.
What Should be Included in a Response to an RFP
Experienced agencies know the importance of a good RFP response. They don’t use templates. They don’t do half a job of it. In fact, they get their best or lead designer to work on the RFP and create a winning proposal. In a market of fierce competition, you can’t afford to be lax with an RFP.
If you are a digital agency or an accomplished video maker, it is essential to prepare a winning RFP that impresses clients. Here are some tried and tested tips about how to increase your chances of bagging the project.
Your response should include:
- An Executive Summary: In order to stand out from the rest, a creative agency can make use of the executive summary to explain what makes your work so different from the rest. Don’t make your summary boring. Being a creative agency, you are free to make your summary interesting, if not exciting and spell-binding. Don’t be afraid to tell a story of your founders, your journey and your accomplishment.
- Project Description: This part is the lengthiest. You can break it into sub-parts where you talk about your understanding of the client’s business, the vision you have for the project and the actual steps you’ll be taking to working on the video. You could show the types of explainer videos that will suit the client’s business best, talk about the duration, the script, the story-telling and all the additional details that the client would need to know if they were to work with you on this project.
- References: For added authenticity and credibility, creative agencies should have references on hand. This gives clients a fairly good idea about how professional and reliable an agency is. Your references should ideally be client reviews with actual names. If you’ve got reviews on third-party sites like BBB, Google Reviews, Clutch, Facebook Reviews, all the better.
- Budget: Your budget depends on your experience, your time, your manpower costs, and your unique positioning amongst competitors. Break down costs for clients to know what they are getting with that money.
- Portfolio: Want to wow potential clients? Show off samples of your previous work. Better yet, get your best designer to create sketches and illustrations to show off your work. Combine your proposal artwork with your portfolio and you will set yourself apart from other competing agencies.
Additionally, don’t forget these basic matters when creating the RFP.
Be Realistic when it comes to Quoting your Price
Clients already have a budget in mind for the explainer video that they want made. An agency needs to explore whether the quoted figures are sufficient to proceed ahead with the video.
Sheryl Chung, Managing Director at Kasra Design (An award winning explainer video company), has this to say:
“In my experience, quoting higher than the set budget released by the client will not work. It is because they believe their budget is enough and it would be a very hard task to convince them otherwise. As preparing a custom proposal will take your team time, you are better off not submitting proposal if the client’s budget is not realistic. Simply inform them about the lack of budget. Who knows maybe they change their mind and come back with a better offer.”
This helps avoid a lot of stress down the road. In short, don’t submit quotations higher than client’s budget.
Do your Research
Since the idea is to grab the attention of the client, it pays to know the ins and outs of their business. As a creative, it is your job to explain what you can do differently while making sure that you understand what the client hopes to accomplish with the explainer video.
There’s no read to rush. Proposals should be detailed and well thought out. Take your time putting together all the relevant details (usually a week or more). Research on the client’s business, their position in the market and explain how the explainer video will help elevate their market position. More importantly, research on their competitors. Understand the struggles of this client and how you can be instrumental in helping them beat competitors, enhance their brand persona and achieve their marketing goals with the video.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions
Many times, a client’s proposal will not be clear on multiple technical aspects, such as what type of explainer video is best for them, what kind of voiceover or music would be suitable, what story should be told etc. It is a good rule of thumb that before you proceed any further, ask them questions and clarify your concerns. Once you have a better grasp of what the client needs from you, send them your proposal. Sometimes, clients just put together their expectations without really knowing the technical details involved in making an explainer video. As an agency, it is your job to ask the right questions before you begin working on an RFP.
On the other hand, you may also encounter clients who know what they want and may ask you questions like:
- Expected quality through past reference video
- Price per minute
- Timeline for each stage and project completion
- Samples of Voice Artists
- Number of revisions offered
- Past References or Testimonials from clients
Make sure, in such instances, to be as specific as possible. Do not leave out details. When you answer questions thoroughly, an experienced client will understand your level of experience and would want to work with you.
Make a Good Impression with your Portfolio
ession with your portfolio, don’t make the mistake of dumping it all into a proposal. Choose videos that are most relevant to the business. In case you don’t have videos relevant to the client’s business or industry, you can create a series of sketches to demonstrate your vision of the client’s video. Remember, the client would already know how awesome you are if they have reached out to you for an RFP – what they want to know is if you can help them with your skills. So it’s a matter of understanding what you can do for them vs how much you’ve done for others. The following example is created for a healthcare company’s explainer video proposal. As you can see all of the visuals are related to the medical and healthcare industry.
Include Case Studies and How they helped enhance businesses for your previous clients
You know what’s better? Numbers!
It’s a great idea to include one or two case studies in your proposal. These case studies can do a better job of communicating what impact your explainer videos have had on a client’s business. You can talk about statistics related to views, social media outreach, conversation rates, brand value, and so on. All this data can help convince clients, who may otherwise be on the fence, to choose you over others.
Even better, include your awards and team achievements. The more the better.
Have a Verified Review? Use It!
If you have a Clutch review, include them in the proposal. Verified reviews are a lot more convincing than those that are not. Just like references, these reviews can help sell how reliable your services are.
Now that you know how to create a stellar response to an RFP, it’s time to get to work. You are now in a better position to work with clients that are in need your creative chops and technical know-how, while at the same time, satisfying their demand with the information they need to partner up with you. With all the fierce competition out there, the need to create a winning proposal is imperative to the success of your agency.