The one-page proposal format is remarkably effective. Hundreds of our graduates have taken the time to share with me how they’re getting higher closing ratios and shorter sales cycles using this simple approach. It's definitely the wave of the future. I envision a day where the majority of proposals presented by both vendors and their internal champions will be drafted on a single page, blank on the back.
If you’re currently using this format I have to issue an important reminder. You definitely need a cover page for your proposal. Why? The last thing you need is a competitor visiting your prospect, only to find your proposal lying there face up in your prospect’s inbox for anyone to see. Let’s say your prospect is finishing up a phone call with someone and your competitor is looking for something to fill the time. They could spend the next several minutes reading your entire one-pager upside down and your prospect wouldn’t notice a thing.
You don't want to have your proposal lying out there for everybody to see, so safeguard it. According to our format there should be nothing else on your cover page than your prospect’s name. I wouldn't even put the project name. Why? Because you don't want to alert your competitor to its existence. Once your competition knows what you’re up to, they could copy it or try to undercut your offering with something similar. That’s the last thing you need, especially considering how many hours of research and effort you put into your proposal.
Preventing this is simple. Cover your work! And remember that the reverse of your cover page should include your contact information as well as the name of the project, so the person knows where this document originated. They need to know that for sure… not anyone else and especially not your competition.