Emails for Proposal Submissions: 4 Methods With Samples

You’ve written all the essential sections for your proposal. The design looks great. Now…all you need to do is craft the perfect email to submit your proposal to your prospective client.

But, writer’s block is settling in. You’re not quite sure what to write in your proposal submission email.

Don’t fret. To help you cross this task off your to-do list, we’ve rounded up 4 unique methods for writing proposal submission emails. Plus, we’ve got email samples for each method.

All you have to do is copy and paste your favorite email sample and customize it to your needs. Let’s do this!

Proposal emails graphic

Why your proposal submission email matters

If you have experience writing proposals, you know that your executive summary is important. It sets the tone for the rest of your proposal and clarifies why the prospect should invest time reading it in detail.

But here’s the thing: the submission email comes first. 🤫Don’t tell your cover letter we told you so, but the email is the real first impression.

When prospective clients receive the submission email, it encourages them to view your proposal in its entirety.

To be effective, the email should be:

  • On brand - Every part of your client experience should be on brand, including this email. For different companies, that might mean using formal language, straight-to-the point messaging, or tons of emojis. Just make sure the email is true to your brand style.

  • Professional - Potential clients will judge the grammar, formatting, appearance, and language of your email to help them decide whether or not they trust you enough to do business with you, so now is not the time for sloppiness. Always proofread your emails.

  • Purposeful - Don’t stuff this email with unnecessary information or requests. Make sure that every line serves a purpose. If it doesn’t cut it. If your email is too long or complicated, it will be a big turn-off.

Keep these tips in mind when crafting your email, no matter which of the writing methods below you ultimately choose.

4 methods for writing proposal submission emails [with samples]

So how do you write an email to deliver your proposal?

Try one of these 4 unique email-writing methods:

  1. Short and sweet

  2. Full executive summary

  3. Mini executive summary

  4. Assume the sale

Use the one that best matches your company and industry. Then, add your unique brand style and prospect details, and hit that send button!

Method 1: Short and sweet

First up, let’s dive into the simplest of all our email-writing methods.

This email acknowledges the fact that your prospective client probably just wants to read your proposal, not a long, fluffy email. So, this email is kept short and sweet. It serves as a notification and a quick request for the reader’s attention. Nothing more, nothing less.

Sample email

Here’s an example email using this writing method:

Subject line: Partnership marketing proposal

Hi Name,

I enjoyed our conversation and I look forward to helping you grow your business through strategic, aligned partnerships with the right companies, associations, and influencers in your industry.

I prepared a proposal based on your needs and our solution here: {link}

Let’s schedule some time early next week to review any questions you might have and move this forward with next steps.

Don’t hesitate to contact me with any questions in the meantime,

{Your Signature}

Method 2: Full executive summary

Our next method is a lot more robust. Geoffrey James, a contributing editor for Inc., says every salesperson should master the proposal submission email.

He recommends this 7-point template to guide your writing:

  1. Statement of gratitude (1 sentence)

  2. Problem definition and financial impact (1-2 sentences)

  3. Desired outcome (1-2 sentences)

  4. Proposed solution (2-5 sentences)

  5. Proposed price (1 sentence)

  6. Risk reduction (1-2 sentences)

  7. Next step (1 sentence)

With this method, you’re essentially re-purposing your cover letter for your submission email.

Sample email

Here’s an example email using Geoffrey’s method:

Subject line: Software development proposal

Hi Name,

Thank you for giving me the opportunity to submit a proposal for your new startup.

The school sports club management niche has not yet been digitized and you have the opportunity to be the first SaaS player in this space. If you don’t get to market quickly, you could lose out on this first-mover advantage.

You need to take your product to market in under 6 months, and we expect to meet that deadline.

I propose a small product team of two senior-level engineers, one product manager, one DevOps engineer, and one QA tester. My business team will provide strategic direction to ensure that this product team performs at a high level and stays on track with the product roadmap.

The cost will be $30,000 per month, with a total expected investment of $180,000 (6 months) to develop your MVP and go to market. After this initial development, the ongoing monthly cost will be lower depending on how aggressively you want to add advanced features.

To ensure that the MVP meets user needs, we will start by developing a prototype and conducting user testing with 10 target users. After product validation, we will begin development.

Please read the proposal in its entirety. You can find it here: {link}

If you’d like us to kickoff prototyping next month, I’ll need the signed proposal and a deposit of $30,000 by March 15th.

Let’s speak later this week to go over any questions you might have and move this forward with next steps. I’ll send you an invite.

{Your Signature}

Method 3: Mini executive summary

This method is inspired by Geoffrey’s 7-point template above—except that it’s a condensed version.

Instead of writing one or more sentences for all of his 7 points, you cover just 3 or 4 of those points.

The benefit of this email method is that it offers context and clarity, without being unnecessarily long.

After all, you probably don’t need to submit a super-long email with your proposal. You just need to encourage the prospect to give it a read.

We recommend you share your gratitude for being able to submit a proposal, describe their pain points or the desired outcome, and detail your proposed solution. However, you can mix and match any of the 7 points from Method 2 to craft an email that is contextualized, yet brief.

This type of proposal works well for financial aid appeal letters as these emails are not so short, and not so lengthy. Precise, to-the-point, and drives results.

Sample email

For this example email, we’re including the following points: gratitude, desired outcome, proposed solution, and next step.

Subject line: Proposal ready for review

Hi Name,

Our team at Acme Architects is honored that you’ve given us the opportunity to submit a proposal for your dream cabin.

We know how important it is that this cabin provides memories for your family to enjoy for decades to come.

To achieve your goals, we’re proposing our standard package, which includes surveying, architectural renderings, design revisions, and streamlined collaboration with your engineer and building team.

Please take a moment to review the proposal here: {link}

Once the proposal is signed, our team will get to work immediately on the land survey.

In the meantime, let's get some time on the calendar to review the proposal together and I can answer any questions.

{Your Signature}

Method 4: Assume the sale

With this method, pretend like you’re writing to a new client who’s being onboarded—instead of trying to sell your services.

Most sellers know the “assume the sale” trick. Here’s how it works: you talk (or write) as if the prospect has already said yes. Your easy confidence in winning the deal helps convince them that you’re the one for the job.

This technique is frequently used on sales calls. A sales representative might say something like, “Let’s make sure to set up a training session on this feature. Our head of education, Samantha, is really great. Your team is going to love her. What month would you like to schedule that?” The seller is putting the prospective client in the mindset of having already said yes to the deal.

You can use this little sales trick in your proposal submission emails as well. You might hone in specifically on the next steps and not mention much else. Or you might include some details on the first few phases of the project.

Keep in mind that this trick can be effective for small businesses, but if your prospective client is a large organization, you might come across as clueless if you assume that decision-makers are already on board. So, use this method with caution. Find ways to mention onboarding and service details without being overly presumptuous.

Sample email

Here’s a sample email using this method:

Subject line: Let’s get started!

Hi Name,

I’m looking forward to working together. You can find the proposal based on our conversation here: {link}

Next week, we’ll kick things off with a 90-minute strategy session. I can’t wait for you to meet our chief brand strategist. She’s a gem and very excited about this project! Then we’ll dive straight into customer and market research, and your new brand will be ready for you by May 1st.

Can’t wait!

{Your Signature}

Must-have email templates when submitting proposals

When writing a professional email, it’s wise not to start from scratch. The proposal submission is an essential part of the sales process, and you want to get it right.

Before sending your sales proposal, consider using these great email templates. They’re available inside of Proposify, our platform designed for sending, tracking, and closing proposals.

Email template for sending the proposal

We’re big believers that for many companies and industries, sales emails should be kept simple.

This proposal email doesn’t include pain points or value propositions. It simply asks the prospective client to take a look at the proposal and let the sender know if they have any questions.

Screenshot of email template for sending a proposal

Let this template be a reminder: you don’t have to dress up your proposal with a complicated email. You can choose to let your proposal shine instead (and take pomp and circumstance out of the picture).

Automated follow-up email template to close the deal

Before you submit your proposal, you should set up at least one automated follow-up email. Not only will this save you time, but follow-up email automation also boosts proposal closing rates by 50% on average.

Use our reminder email template as an example. It kicks things off with a simple opening paragraph: “Do you have any questions on the proposal? I’m happy to adjust the terms to meet your needs.”

Screenshot of an email template for a proposal reminder

Automated thank-you email template

The thank-you email serves as one of the initial elements in your client experience.

You should use automation to send the thank-you email, because you want the client to feel good about their decision to work with you. If they sign the proposal while you’re away from your desk, automation ensures that you’re responding to their decision without delay.

You can use this email to cover important onboarding steps, such as filling out a questionnaire or booking a kickoff meeting. Or, you can simply deliver a copy of the signed proposal and let your client know you will be in touch with them as soon as possible to begin the onboarding process.

Proposify offers automated thank-you emails within our platform. This template uses simple, positive language like, “Thank you for accepting our proposal. We’re excited to get started and we’ll be in touch ASAP with next steps.”

Screenshot of a template for a thankyou for accepting a proposal email

With Proposify, you can edit any of our email templates or create your own templates for a variety of use cases.

Get proposal templates and automated emails with Proposify

To send beautiful proposals and submission emails in a snap, you need proposal software.

Proposify includes both proposal templates and email templates to save you time and create consistency for your sales team. Our software also offers analytics features so you can check which prospective clients have viewed your proposal and how often. This data will help you craft custom follow-up emails based on each client’s level of interest (or lack thereof). You can also track average viewing and closing rates to set goals for improving your sales stats.

And for the cherry on top, emails sent with Proposify enjoy an average open rate of 90.5%, so you can be sure that your emails are getting through to your prospects.

Emails for Proposal Submissions: 4 Methods With Samples

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