Establish purpose and audience
Red Level Strategies
Establish purpose and audience
Use simple, concrete, direct language — align language and purpose
Use the direct organization
Ensure completeness and accuracy
Write informative and purposeful subject lines
Orange Level Strategies
Use goodwill-building techniques
Emphasize reader benefits
Write with a positive emphasis
Write with a reader-based emphasis
Yellow Level Strategies
Refine information to make it more useful
Design information using SSPD
Write with parallel structure
Craft informative headings
Green Level Strategies
Establish a clear objective
Align objectives and account for differences
Identify and emphasize competitive advantages and meaningful strengths
Create concrete images
Here is the description of the paper,
Scenario: It has been 5 years since you were first hired on as trainer for the Big City Fitness Center. In that time, BCFC has achieved great success, thanks in no small part to your social media campaign, partnership with Big City Tech, and emphasis on providing the highest level of customer service. As operations manager, you have taken a leadership role in many of these efforts.
As a matter of fact, BCFC owner Mary Lou Kizer has been so impressed with your work that she allows you nearly complete autonomy when it comes to making decisions regarding the running of the gym.
So it’s no surprise when Mary Lou hands you a letter from the Big City Association of Small Business Owners and asks you to take a look and let her know what you think. The letter contains the following Request for Proposals (RFP):
RFP: Small Business in the Digital Age
The Big City Association of Small Business Owners is accepting proposals for presentations for its upcoming conference: “Small Business in the Digital Age.” Our members are busy entrepreneurs, trying to manage and grow their businesses with limited resources. Ideal presentations will give them an overview of how technology is changing a particular aspect of small business and, most importantly, give them skills and practices they can incorporate right away. Please submit a letter of interest that includes a brief overview of your credentials, a summary of your proposed presentation, and an explanation of how your presentation will benefit those who run growing small businesses.
There are no speaker fees associated with our event; however, speakers are able to attend the conference free of charge. Your bio and company contact information will be featured prominently in the program. Additionally, speakers will be given a digital list of the names and addresses of conference attendees.
You see an opportunity here: conferences are a great way to learn more about your craft, establish contacts within the local business community, and meet potential new clients. Especially enticing is the list of contact information for attendees. With that contact information, you have the opportunity to expand your professional network and garner more business opportunities for the gym.
When you tell Mary Lou you think this is an opportunity worth taking, she immediately agrees. She suggests you put together a team of presenters in order to make the presentation “more dynamic.”
There is only one problem: you are sure that the Association will be inundated with proposals. You have a policy of only responding to RFPs when you believe that one of your core strengths will be a competitive advantage, but you believe you can craft a unique presentation based on the experience and expertise you have acquired in your years of helping lead BCFC to its current success.
Since much of the gym’s continued success is a direct result of its social media presence, you decide to assemble a team that can help you craft and deliver a presentation that will show conference attendees how writing, marketing, and customer service are interrelated when it comes to using social media effectively for your small business.
Along with yourself as the main presenter, you choose Elise Ferguson and Luke Shore to round out your team. Elise has been managing the social media accounts for BCFC for the last four years, curating content and interacting with customers on sites like Facebook, Twitter, Google Places, YouTube, and others. Elise has a good eye for what makes content valuable for users, and she is especially adept at crafting effective messages across different platforms and for different audiences.
Luke joined BCFC as its first marketing director two years ago. He has his BA in Marketing, and he is an active member of the Association for Business Communication. Luke works closely with Elise on the gym’s marketing campaigns, and the three of you often work together to respond to customer service issues that are raised via social media.
Before you begin designing your presentation, Elise wisely suggests that you identify your strengths and competitive advantages in this situation. You come up with the following:
We work for a small business with the same challenges and goals as the audience.
We have experience crafting and executing social media strategies for our business.
We have a unique presentation because it incorporates three crucial areas of expertise (writing, marketing, and customer service) related to using social media.
Luke also notes that many attendees will have smartphones, tablets, and/or laptops with them at the conference, so you should find a way to incorporate audience interaction into your presentation.
Assignment: Write a 1- to 2-page proposal letter (what the RFP calls a “letter of interest”) in response to the RFP from the Big City Association of Small Business Owners. Be sure to include a subject line, all information called for in the RFP, and open with goodwill and your statement of purpose. Your credentials and the overview of your presentation should come in the detailed description of your solution. The address of the Big City Association of Small Business Owners is 15 Commerce Circle, Big City, FL 33999. Big City Fitness Center’s address is 304 Midway Blvd., Big City, FL 33999.
Your proposal letter will be graded on correct use of language and overall professionalism as well as the Red, Orange, Yellow, and Green Strategies listed below (a more detailed rubric for Writing Assignment 4 can be found below)