Do you need a business partner? If YES, here is an 8-step guide on how to write a business partnership proposal that gets the money or collaboration you want. Indeed starting and managing your own business can be daunting, especially if you are trying to do everything by yourself.
There are times when partners will be required, and a strategically planned partnership tends to help businesses increase productivity and achieve their various business goals.
Table of Content
- What is a Business Partnership Proposal?
- Important Facts You Must Know Before Drafting a Partnership Proposal
- 1. Do Your Research
- 2. Your Title Page Matters
- 3. Write, Edit & Format the Proposal
- 4. Establish a Milestone – Centric Partnership Timeline
- 5. Don’t Forget the Complimentary Cover Letter
- 6. Visual Data & Social Proof Matter
- 7. Have a Table of Content
- 8. Summarize your Proposal
- The Dos and Don’ts of a Business Partnership Proposal
- a. Remember to Write For Your Audience
- b. Ensure to Keep Your Lines Open
- c. Always Be Keen On Details
- d. Partnerships Are Always 50/50
- e. Remember To Prioritize Your Business Goals
- i. Partnering With Someone You Barely Know
- ii. Saying Too Much
- iii. A Vague Output
- iv. Being Too Ambitious
- v. Getting it Right The First Time
What is a Business Partnership Proposal?
A business partnership proposal is a letter written when one business wants to get into a joint venture with another business. Getting into a joint venture help businesses expand and grow to new territories, reduce the cost of production, and explore new markets to grow their customer base.
To start the process of getting into a joint venture, a business partnership proposal letter is written by the business owner and addressed to the potential business partner or company to explain reasons and concepts why the joint venture would work.
This letter shows the potential partner your reason and interest in doing business with them. It describes what the business is about to benefit and how it will help them. It is also an opportunity for the business person seeking the partnership to market their business, highlight the short-term and long-term goals.
Important Facts You Must Know Before Drafting a Partnership Proposal
One of the most important things to keep in mind when looking to reach out to a potential business partner using a proposal is to be mindful of the way you write and the words you use. The ways you approach someone tends to determine the result of your proposal and you can gain a new partner just through the way you speak.
The major thing is to always stay professional and never lose your manners. No matter how familiar you are with the person you are sending the proposal to, your objective is not to become their friends but to win them over with an offer they will be tempted to accept.
Always remember to show your manners and your professionalism, and this can be simple as long as you remember that you are not superior to any other person in your field. In addition, a good idea is to ensure you always keep your letter free of any grammar and spelling errors as they can also decrease the readability of your text and make it look less professional.
Reaching out to a potential business partner is a huge step from your side and it should be treated with all seriousness. A business that works with more than one owner has higher chances of making it and will become successful a lot faster.
How to Create a Business Partnership Proposal in 8 Steps
According to reports, the number of tax returns among business partnerships increased from 1.3 Million to 3.2 Million within the past three decades. Although it could be said that businesses are paying their taxes as they should, it also buttresses a rise in the number of businesses run by partners. Below is a step – by – step guide to help to write a business partnership proposal that tackles all the necessary points of a successful plan.
1. Do Your Research
Indeed you might have a few companies in mind. It might be that these companies have the platform to offer your business better market exposure and visibility that you may not assess alone. Irrespective of what your reason may be, it is pertinent to be knowledgeable about what you are getting yourself into.
Note that you can learn more about the company by researching its history, employees, and industry performance over the years. Have it in mind that the more you know about the business, the more data you have regarding its ability to stand above the competition. This also sends a good sign to the partnering firm, as it shows how serious you are about the deal.
2. Your Title Page Matters
The first step when writing your partnership proposal writing is to formulate your title page correctly. Since this is will be the very first impression your potential partners will have of your brand, take time to ensure it is well – designed, informative and free of proofreading or formatting errors.
You will have to use the title page to present your reader with the title of your suggested project, your full name and job position (as a company representative) as well as legal business information. This will serve as a great hook for further reading.
3. Write, Edit & Format the Proposal
After the title page, you can proceed to the partnership proposal writing proper. It is very important to state that your proposal needs to be backed up by factual data, benefits of partnership as well as long-term effects the project will have on your companies.
Carefully outline your proposition and star them without bias to ensure that your reader understands the exact reason(s) behind your proposition. This can easily be done with bulleted points, bolded letters and other text – editing tricks to allow for skimming and easier reading throughout the project.
You should also consider providing external links to any data, research or case study which supports your claims and works in your favour in terms of convincing the reader to accept your offer. When you feel satisfied with the proposition, take enough time to reread and proofread it to eliminate any grammar or spelling errors which might have crept through before moving forward.
4. Establish a Milestone – Centric Partnership Timeline
Note that to make your partnership proposal as understandable and presentable as possible; it is advisable you create a rudimentary partnership timeline to complement it. A simple left – to – right timeline of events in terms of your businesses’ partnership can do wonders in your favour. You should also create simple milestones and KPIs between the start of your partnership and the final product of your partnership to drive your point forward.
Also remember that the milestones you create is expected to complement the final goal of your partnership and allow the reader to have a concrete understanding of how the process would work, what it is that you need from them and what they can get from the partnership.
5. Don’t Forget the Complimentary Cover Letter
Even though your partnership proposal may include all the technical details of the proposed partnership, it may not be enough to satisfy your reader or express its benefits. However, you can use a complementary cover letter, similar to those written for job applications, to express your intentions. Note that your cover letter should be written in a personalized tone of voice, by you or one of your representatives.
Ensure to stay honest about your intentions and state that you would be honoured to collaborate with the reader’s company because your goals are aligned. In addition, proofread your writing before you consider sending it to any potential B2C or B2B partner to maintain your professional integrity.
6. Visual Data & Social Proof Matter
Have it in mind that any textual content you create can and should be complemented with adequate visuals. A picture is worth 10,000 words, and Visual content such as your brand’s visuals, patterns and visualized data such as infographics and charts can do miracles or change how your proposal is viewed.
Do not forget to establish a balance between written and visual content to ensure that your proposal comes off as professional, curated and well – informed in terms of current industry trends. Also consider incorporating existing social proof data, client testimonials and other stakeholder – centric materials to drive your partnership proposal home.
7. Have a Table of Content
After your partnership proposal is done and you are confident of its content, it is advisable you create a table of content to complement it. Always remember to make the table of content simple and informative without excess details or new information not present in the partnership proposal itself.
The table of content will allow your reader to quickly jump between paragraphs and data points in your proposal on repeat readings. It will also buttress that you are UX – centric in terms of your content optimization and business presentation which will add positive points to your networking efforts.
8. Summarize your Proposal
At this point, you can summarize your entire partnership proposal in a separate page at the end of your document. Note that this summary should be treated as a metadata or a snippet of your proposal. Just simple but concise two – to – three paragraphs of what your proposal entails, the benefits it would bring to both parties as well as how it would influence your industry going forward.
Also remember that your summary can be used by your reader to present the proposal quickly to their co – workers and business partners without going over minute details in a short time span. Also remember to bookend the proposal with a thank – you note and a call to action for your reader to get in touch with you in the near future.
The Dos and Don’ts of a Business Partnership Proposal
To make an effective partnership proposal, you must address a set of common concerns that includes benefits, values alignment and goals of such a partnership, as well as questions of how to structure any future dissolution of the partnership. So to make sure you start it off on the right foot, here are a few reminders to take into account when proposing a business partnership with a prospective partner.
a. Remember to Write For Your Audience
You should always remember that potential partners are always going to be skeptical about the idea of partnering with other businesses. Although it may be a wonderful opportunity for your brand to branch out to new markets, you have to extensively consider what is in it for your partner. Ideally, partnerships are meant to be a two – way street in which both parties may benefit from.
So if you are looking to convince anyone to invest in something promising, you will have show what you can bring to the table. You have to make this explicitly clear from the get – go. Also ensure that what you are proposing offers a direct solution to their problems. What works for one client may not work for another, so do some research before making a move.
b. Ensure to Keep Your Lines Open
It would be a bad idea if you make it difficult for prospects to become your partner. You should make it easy for them to reach you in respect to a possible partnership or any other matters in the arrangement. Hence, ensure to keep your contacts active.
You can start by answering questions when you need to, addressing inquiries that are crucial to the partnership, and setting meetings for a more thorough discussion. The whole process will definitely consume much of your time, but it is something worth investing in if it has the potential of leading your business to better opportunities.
c. Always Be Keen On Details
You should note that every single detail counts in a business proposal. You are about to make a pitch on a matter you have been contemplating on for a couple of months, so it is very ideal to be meticulous about it. This concerns everything from the central message of the proposal down to the kind of paper you use to present your ideas. After writing, always ensure you let the proposal sit while you clear your mind.
Come back to it when you are ready, and you may discover a few errors that were overlooked the first time around. Also, a little tweaking here and there may also be necessary to improve your delivery. When you are satisfied with what you wrote, you can send it over to a potential partner for review.
d. Partnerships Are Always 50/50
A lot of people will warn you about the consequences of going equal. It is a hard decision to make, especially since you are putting a lot at stake when you finally enter the Partnership Contract. However, a 50/50 partnership would make each party more liable for their actions, giving you and your business partner a voice in every major decision.
Even though this arrangement may not be suitable for all circumstances, it won’t hurt to consider it and decide if it is worth investing. Note that the success of your company should also come as a priority, so if both parties are equally committed to this goal, a 50/50 partnership could be your best option.
e. Remember To Prioritize Your Business Goals
Note that just because you are writing to impress your audience doesn’t mean you should ignore the goals of your business. Whether you admit it or not, the whole essence of the brand partnership is to help businesses expand into other markets.
Even new investors know how pertinent it is to look at the bigger picture when deciding who to partner with and what venture to embark on. Have it in mind that the major objective of the proposal is to provide the potential partners with a reason or reasons to do business with you that they wouldn’t otherwise achieve on their own.
i. Partnering With Someone You Barely Know
From all perspectives, it is never a good idea to partner with someone you barely know or have never worked with. Family members and friends should also be off-limits if possible. Always remember that mixing business with your personal relationships can often lead to emotional arguments that are impossible to fix.
It also makes it challenging for you to make rational decisions in fear that your partner might take things personally. However, unless you have already worked with the person on a past project, only then should you consider a potential partnership. Remember that a healthy working relationship comes from your ability to form a solid foundation that both parties may develop together.
ii. Saying Too Much
You have to first understand that your readers won’t have the time to skim through a lengthy proposal. As soon as the document lands on their table, their objective is to take what’s necessary from it before deciding what to do.
A smart approach to this case is to create a short but informative cover letter or summary of what you want to propose. Start by thinking about what your audience would want to get from your proposal. Having the main takeaway visible is always a wonderful idea, as it gives your readers a substantial amount of information to ponder on.
iii. A Vague Output
Agreeably, there are no rules whatsoever against using a proposal template to communicate your pitch. You might even find it useful if you haven’t had much experience in proposal writing. But do not forget the implications of using a generic proposal.
It is not enough to simply convey your thoughts and ideas to a potential partner, as you need to learn how to target your audience directly by telling them what they want to hear. Although you might not want to give away too much information, the proposal is expected to be specific and compelling enough to give someone a reason to trust you and your Business Plans.
iv. Being Too Ambitious
Proposing to partner with another company can be a terrifying experience, especially when it is with a business that is bigger than yours. Also, the level of pressure or intimidation that you feel may affect or tell in your writing. Note that some proponents make the mistake of exaggerating what they are capable of in an attempt to impress the panel.
However, it is advisable you remain reasonable about what you choose to say in the proposal. Note there is a fine line between aiming high and claiming the impossible. Howbeit, you have to take your company’s resources into account before partnering with a business that is bound to expect more from you.
v. Getting it Right The First Time
You have to understand that rejections are a necessary part of the game, it is often inevitable. Have it in mind that not every good idea will resonate well with your audience, irrespective of how hard you try to let them see things from your perspective.
However, consider it as a learning experience that teaches you what you have been doing wrong during your previous attempts to establish a partnership. If it doesn’t work out the first time, you can propose a new, more promising plan in the future. Always ensure to consult with an expert to find out what you can do to refine your proposal and leave a positive impression on a potential partner.
Businesses sometimes work better when they are in partnership with other businesses. Business partnerships are always expected to be beneficial to both businesses. You are always expected to explain how the partnership will benefit your partner’s business, the short-term and long-term goals, the future ideas in precise details and statistics. If given, use the format described by the partner.