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Getting Writing Jobs Without Underpricing Yourself: The Perfect Proposal

Updated on August 22, 2012

Write The Perfect Proposal

This article is going to give you a few short and simple tips on how to craft the most effective proposal for winning writing jobs freelance.

Steps To Take When Bidding On A Writing Job

When you see a business crying out for a writer and their requirements match you're skill set it's difficult to stop yourself from leaping at them and crying "Me! Pick me!"

But if you adhere to these tips you'll give yourself the best shot.

  1. Introduce yourself - briefly. Don't give your life story. Simply address them appropriately using whichever way they have used to refer to themselves, state your name and a brief summary of what you do, then move on.
  2. Address their requirements directly. If the requirement is for a sales letter, don't rabbit on about how many blog posts you've written - tell them your skill and experience of writing sales letters and refer directly to their requirements.
  3. Rephrase their job post. Don't do this meticulously, but give them a brief summary of what they want from the viewpoint of what you'll provide. For example, if they have said: "We need a sales letter which fills around a full page of A4 and will be sent to business owners in the USA", place something along the lines of "I can provide you with a high quality single page sales letter using language which connects with businesses across the USA".
  4. Don't drag your heels. If they have a deadline, make sure you can hit this and tell them this. Don't assume that because they have said they need it in a week they will assume you can provide it in a week. Tell them, and then follow through.
  5. Keep your prices consistent. If you under price yourself to give the appearance of being competitive in regards to other potential offers they will receive, you are setting yourself a trap. All future work which may be undertaken between you and this client will be set with a lower benchmark and you also risk promoting your services as being less professional than they are. If you get greedy and overprice yourself the client may opt for a cheaper freelancer, or even be disappointed when the work you provide does not warrant the price you have charged. Only ever price your services in a way that truly reflects what you provide. For tips on how to price your work, click this link.
  6. Tell them exactly what is included. If you are happy to complete 1, 2, or even 3 revisions of the final document then tell them. If you don't set limits as to what you can offer you might end up being expected to complete a lot more than you were bidding for. Tell them if your price includes revisions, if so how many, and if it includes a consultation or otherwise. This way, everybody is singing from the same hymn book and anything extra that is requested can be billed accordingly.


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    • MelChi profile image

      Melanie Chisnall 5 years ago from Cape Town, South Africa

      Thank you for pointing out these tips! My first paid writing job was one which required me to physically go out and do research that wasn't available on the Internet (I didn't know this then), and do a few revisions after the article was finished. This wasn't discussed at the acceptance of the contract either. I hard lesson, but one that was learnt. Fantastic article!

    • writeyourwrongs profile image

      John Crowley 5 years ago from Sheffield

      This is very true (in fact, there's a section on how to price your work in one of my other pieces). Thanks for the comment.

    • Jeff Gamble profile image

      Jeff Gamble 5 years ago from Denton, Texas

      Sound advice - Perhaps the most difficult thing for any freelancer is pricing work. It can be challenging to put a value on the services you provide.