This article is going to cover two different situations when it comes to you, the virtual assistant, offering a proposal or estimate to a client.
Scenario #1: You are rocking out your marketing and have made contact with a potential client. They tell you their needs, ask if you handle that type of work as well as what you charge, and you want to respond to them.
Scenario #2: You are a member of a virtual assistant directory that provides RFP (request for proposal) service for people looking for virtual assistants, and you’d like to respond to one. I’ll also tell you where to find those directories in this article.
Step #1: Follow Directions
First and foremost, follow the directions they laid out to respond to the RFP. Maybe they want a certain thing noted in your subject line, certain things listed in a particular order or you need to attach some type of documentation that they request from you. Make sure that you do just that. You need to show them that you can follow directions right from the start. Attention to detail is so important. They also want to know that you can follow directions.
Step #2: Answer All Questions
This might seem simple but people miss this. Make sure that you cover each task/item that they list and how you would accomplish it. Don’t skip sections or questions. If they ask for a certain number of references, make sure you provide that number of references. If they ask a question about why you think you’re best for the task, tell them why.
Step #3: Do Your Research
Learn a little about the prospective client. Visit their website so that you can mention in your RFP how your particular expertise can help them with their particular type of work with an example of how you’ve helped another such client.
Step #4: Easy Contact Info
Provide all pertinent contact information for you and your business. It should be easy to read, with clickable links if possible. Make sure that all of those places they can contact you are up to date. If it’s your website, that should be up and running. If you mention a social media platform, you should be active there.
Step #5: Skills Count
Make sure that you have the skills and can do what is requested. If they mention that they’re looking for someone experienced in a certain area, don’t tell them that you’re a fast learner. Apply for RFPs that help you to feel confident in your abilities, ones you know that you would be a great fit for given your skills and experience.
Step #6: It’s About Them
Remember, it’s about what you can do for them and how you can fill their need. Don’t go on and on with “I” and “me” and all the things you know how to do. Keep your responses relevant to their needs and how you can handle it for them.
Where can you find directories with RFPs?
As I mentioned, there are some great virtual assistant directories where you can find new clients. A number of them require a monthly fee in order to view the RFPs but you would consider that as part of your marketing budget. It’s well worth it if you start to get some regular clients rolling in after putting forth the time and effort.
Here are my top suggestions:
(Disclaimer: some of these links are my affiliate links and I could make a commission if you sign up through them.)
GAVA (Global Alliance of Virtual Assistants)
CAVA (Canadian Association of Virtual Assistants)
IVAA (International Virtual Assistants Association)
I’d love to know your thoughts or questions in the comments!