Winning Proposal Template for Freelance Writing Job Boards

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If you find yourself battling to win jobs on freelance writing job boards, the problem boils down to:

  1. An incomplete profile, or
  2. Poor reviews and ratings, or too few, or
  3. Bad pricing, or
  4. Poor communication with potential clients, or
  5. A shoddy proposal.

A prospective client is only interested in whether your work can meet his or her objectives, and it starts with the proposal.

However, it has to be noted that on job boards like Upwork and Peopleperhour, there are way too many people looking to make a quick buck and all they want is a cheap writer.

So…even if your profile is great, and your work is quality, and you submit exceptional proposals, even with all that, when a client is only interested in price at the expense of quality, no matter how appealing your proposal, it will be rejected (their loss, not yours…).

The benefits of using a winning template like the one to follow, is that you are more likely to attract the attention of higher quality clients, because when they themselves produce quality work, they will also recognize the quality of your proposal.

I always knew when a client was quality, because I would get a fast response from them after submitting a proposal. The quality in them recognized the quality in my proposals.

Now that’s out of the way, to save yourself precious time, you should use a template with every job you apply for, but never just copy-paste-submit.

Personalize every single proposal, so that it is meaningful to the client.

How will you know this template works for you? If used correctly, you should get at least one response for every 10 – 15 proposals submitted.

Bonus proposal writing tips!

  1. Keep the proposal short.
  2. Make it easy to read by including spaces between sections.
  3. Only add what’s necessary and what’s important to the client. They are not interested in your history or schooling, etc. They only want to know why you are the best person for the job.
  4. Use the same words as the client, so go through the job description carefully.
  5. Proofread your proposal before hitting the submit button.


Related: The Reasons Why Freelance Writing Makes a Viable Business


The template logic is as follows:

  1. Start with the client’s name – find it in their feedback area if necessary.
  2. Capture their attention – use a testimonial that’s relevant to the job, or something that gives proof that your writing is better than the other writers who are applying for the job. Statistics and numbers are good here, but they have to apply to your work specifically.
  3. Your work should speak for itself, and the only way a client will know if your writing is what they are looking for, is by seeing samples, so add two of your best samples at the top of the proposal.
  4. Now add any detail that will impress them, without sounding braggy. Relevant results, qualifications, experience, and so on is good in this section.
  5. Be specific about how your pricing works.
  6. End off with a greeting that shows them you are enthusiastic.

Winning template to copy – paste – tweak:

Hello [client’s name],

My last client said this about my work: “[add genuine testimonial here]”.

I have more 🙂

Here are two samples of my work:

[add link 1 here]

[add link 2 here]

Why choose me?

[Add benefits to the client if you are selected.]

[Be specific about how your pricing works.]

I am excited to hear back from you!


Here’s the exact proposal I submitted for a social media writing job, and the above template is based on it:

Hi Tracy,

I created a social media strategy for a client, and she said this about my work: “Claire is an absolute pleasure to work with! She is extremely thorough and repeatedly sent through content well ahead of the weekly schedule. I will definitely recommend Claire for her friendly professionalism, first-rate social media marketing knowledge and timely responses to all my questions and comments. Thanks for an excellent strategy and smooth process!”

I have more 🙂

Why use me?

  1. I understand your target audience. More than anything, this is what makes any marketing campaign successful.
  2. I am a good copywriter who uses persuasive techniques.
  3. My focus is on developing content and marketing strategies.
  4. I have experience and proof that my work gets results.
  5. The work I do is quality and my aim is to build your brand with high quality and value-add content that is meaningful to your audience.

Here’s an example of my work (all the posts were designed around the copy I provided, as well as the strategy I created): http://www.facebook.com/clientname

I am giving you a rough quote for a weekly strategy that covers a month. It is for 5 Facebook posts a week. It will give you an idea of my pricing, but it will be revised once I have the specifics 🙂

I got the job.

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Posted by Claire Carradice

Claire Carradice is a freelance writer specialising in SEO blog posts and case studies for the digital marketing, business, SEO and HR/recruitment industries. She coaches fellow freelance writers to market themselves better and build strong businesses around content.

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