There’s a book I want you to pick up, especially if you sell to C-Level People. It’s called The One Page Proposal, and it’s by Patrick Riley (BTW, I linked this to the Amazon page because Patrick Riley isn’t Shawn Pringle when it comes to Web Marketing.
I started making money with this book before I finished reading it. (I ended up skipping to the back, and looking at the examples.)
The book teaches how to write a conscise summary to present to a C-Level Executive. The basic concept is that a CEO has 30 seconds to review your proposal. If it is too technical, or too long, or too complicated, it probably will never get read by the C.
Comments I get on the one page proposal are, “This is what I needed to bring to the team”, or “This is what I need to start this project”.
I’ve used this type of proposal to get things running internally with my VP as well.
Get this book! A small investment in reading, a small financial investment, and a lot of research will get be worth it.
Combine this approach with my 15 Minute C-Level Meetings, and you’ll have a solid foot in the door.
Here’s a redacted copy of the memo I wrote for tomorrow’s blog topic.
VIRTUALIZATION OF XXX TEST LAB ENVIRONMENT
An initiative to improve the quality of external testing and benchmarking for XXX
TARGET: Create an easier, better, faster way for customers to benchmark and test XXX. Exchange this testing tool in exchange for knowledge of who is testing.
” Customize an existing virtual machine server environment as a server to test XXX and competitive products.
” Develop documentation to facilitate an easy install.
” Develop a set of tests that can be used to evaluate XXX against other products, using the test server.
” Create a marketing campaign that says that we have this available, and in exchange for customer information, we will allow a download.
” Create a set of tutorial videos that shows how to set this server up.
” Create a set of promotional disks that can be sent out to CIOs and the analyst/reviewer community.
XXX has been seeing an amazing increase in the number of customers wishing to evaluate and test XXX in the lab. I’ve witnessed a great deal of variance in lab testing, which for the most part has been abysmal. Lab testing is generally shorter in time, limited in focus, and misses important features. It is proving to be very costly for us to participate in lab testing, setup time takes up much of the day, and results are not optimal, because of the disparities in testing, and the limited amount of knowledge the evaluators have.
If XXX would develop a virtual server testing environment that contains all the tools necessary to do a complete demo of us against the competition, we gain the following advantages.
” Reduced Configuration Time
” More Complete and Faster Evaluation Process
” Goodwill from the Customer Community
” Knowledge of prospects evaluating this project.
I would recommend that we do not use internal XXX resources to develop the actual Virtual Machine. It would reduce our costs, keep focus, and maintain impartiality if we have a third party do the actual development of this server environment. We could use open source tools to set up a Linux distribution that has a mail server, DNS, DHCP, Microsoft networking, a database, and file shares, with sample sets of data.
Since we are using standard open source tools, we could outsource this project for a very low cost. We would require a minimum amount of internal engineering help to outline the initial configuration.
We can also use external resources to document the install, and even record the training videos. This of course can also be done with internal resources.
XXX marketing would need to develop the appropriate collateral and web resources to facilitate distribution. We’d also need to provide distribution resources for physical media, if we choose to distribute this.
ACTION: XXX will assign a team containing a member of marketing and XXX engineering. A project and financial plan will be drawn up, and upon approval, the project will be executed.
This example differs slightly from the examples in the book, primarily because it was aimed at an internal executive. It is in the spirit of the OPP.