How to write a campaign proposal
Solid research, a well-designed strategy and persuasive writing create a winning campaign proposal. Whether writing a proposal for a public relations pitch, a marketing strategy or a fundraiser, a strong campaign plan is your opportunity to woo a new client, be awarded a project or earn funding.
Your proposal lays the groundwork for the entire campaign, backing up all statements with facts and analysis. Invest time in fact finding, research, a compelling campaign plan and a high-quality overall presentation.
Meet with the client to identify his campaign objectives. Ask questions until you have a clear understanding of the goals to target in the proposal. For example, the client may believe his company is not receiving enough exposure, and his objective for the campaign is to increase brand awareness.
Initiate research or focus groups to help you understand the history of the company, organisation or product. Research provides quantitative or qualitative evidence that will shape your approach to the proposal. Studying current perceptions surrounding a product, for example, gives you a direction for your proposal.
Analyse the data from your research or focus group. Begin with the background information and raw data collected, and summarise the key research findings.
Determine whether the research solidifies or changes your original campaign objectives. For example, if your research on a particular cleaning product found that it sells well among women 40 and older but is relatively unknown among women in the 18 to 39 age group, the campaign's target audience might shift to one group or the other. Likewise, a direct-mail fundraising campaign might target certain Postcodes with a high median income.
Compose a draft of your written campaign proposal. The proposal will have six main sections.
Identify the key problem or problems your campaign will address in the analysis section. Explain why the problem should receive attention, and provide details of how your campaign will do this. Giving compelling reasons for the campaign is essential.
Briefly describe the research methodology in the "Research" section, and then give a detailed outline of the research results and their implications for the campaign. Organise your data in either bulleted lists or full paragraphs.
Title your next section "Message Points," and list the key messages of your campaign in a bulleted, easy-to-read format. These messages should counteract or address the problems you identified through research.
Include, in the "Goals and Strategies" section, a complete, step-by-step outline of the strategies you will implement during the campaign. Include itemised costs and materials, along with the expected benefits of each campaign component. For example, propose a new company logo, which will cost £195, to provide a new and distinct visual representation of the brand.
Add a "Conclusions" section in which you summarise your campaign proposal. Be succinct. The tone should be straightforward and persuasive.
Complete your proposal with a compelling executive summary that briefly details the key points and recommendations of the campaign proposal. The executive summary is important, as it is the first section your client will see. This brief document highlights the main points of the entire proposal. A client should be able to read the executive summary and understand the whole proposal without reading further.
Compile your campaign proposal in this order: executive summary, analysis, research, message points, goals and strategies, conclusion. Append any relevant documents, such as findings of a focus group.
- Print each page of the campaign proposal on quality letterhead that clearly identifies your company and contact information.
- A single typo can sink a campaign before it is even off the ground. Being accurate and complete is critical. Edit and proofread every part of your proposal.