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Running an online Agency, Spinning the plates

How To Stop A Prospect From Going Silent After Your Proposal

25 August 2017

It’s a challenge that faces all digital agencies – following up with potential new business after providing a proposal/quote. You spend the time researching and crafting the perfect client proposal only to never hear back from the prospect. How long do you wait for a response? What do you say? How do you move forward if you don’t hear from them? Do you assume they don’t want to deal with your company, that they’ve received a better quote? How long do you let your mind continue to spin with all the reasons you haven’t heard back from a prospect? When do you let it go?

Agency advisor and coach Jason Swenk shares his approach to combatting the disappear prospect in this video.


Video Transcript

How frustrating is it to send a prospect your proposal only to find out that they go completely silent? They won’t return your e-mails, they won’t return your phone calls.

Look, I remember, when I ran my agency for 12 years until I sold it, how much time actually went into a proposal, and I remember how angry I was when I would spend all that time, send that proposal to the prospect, and they would never get back to us. I mean, it was a ton of wasted time, of wasted opportunity.

I’m gonna tell you today how you can actually solve this, how you can actually stop your prospect from going silent once you send them the proposal. Are you ready?

Don’t send them the proposal.

When you get to a point where you know you can actually help the prospect and they want to work with you, “We would love to do a proposal for you, and show you our process, and what we actually can do for you. When can we set up the next time to review that proposal with you?” If you review the proposal with them, now you can walk them through it, of how they should be so they’re comparing apples to apples, versus apples to oranges.

Because, look, if you just lob over the proposal over the fence, they’re going to flip right to the back, they’re gonna look at the pricing. They’re just going to kind of look at the pricing and compare that to everybody else, versus looking at the process, looking at the systems that you have in place in order to ensure that you can deliver the results. Look, you’re selling outcomes, you’re not selling features.

Now, you’re probably wondering, “Well, most of my prospects I chat with just want a proposal. They just call me up, we chat for one time, and they just say, “Hey, send me a proposal.” What do you tell them?

What we would tell them is this. “If you’re wanting a proposal right away, without meeting with us, we may not be the best fit for you, and we’d be willing to walk away.” Because what we found was, we’re not talking to the decision makers, we were talking to our competitors trying to fish us out, or we were talking to people that were seriously ready to execute if they heard something that they wanted and they were going to compare just numbers, and they weren’t going to really look at what really makes us unique and what we can actually help them out with, and help them achieve their outcome.

So, just remember, don’t ever send the proposal without setting up that meeting to review it with your prospect. If you do this, you’ll never have a prospect go silent after you send them the proposal.


Fresh out of college Jason Swenk began working for Arthur Anderson, one of the big 5 consulting firms. He quickly realized that he couldn’t work for anyone but himself so he changed direction, quit his job and launched a digital marketing agency that quickly grew to a multi-million dollar operation working with brands from AT&T, Hitachi and Lotus Cars. After 12 years of steady growth, his company caught the attention of larger agencies and was sold in 2012. Now Jason runs a unique consultancy helping marketing agencies grow their agency’s faster. You can reach him at

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