Keys To Drafting An RFP

Frequently prospective Branded clients will draft a “request for proposal” or “RFP,” the industry acronym for the document. A company typically identifies multiple agencies, sends them these RFPs and evaluates them based on their responses.

The idea behind the RFP is to give an agency, like Branded, an idea as to what the drafting company would like included in a proposal for services. RFPs are often helpful to agencies, allowing them to more specifically speak to the objectives and goals regarding marketing and communications strategy.

With that said, some are often dense and full of unnecessary information. So we’ve put together a list of keys to drafting an RFP

Briefly Describe the Company

Sometimes RFPs can feature unnecessarily lengthy explanations of a company, its history and executives. While an RFP without an explanation of a company is incomplete, it should be limited to the information an agency needs to know. Think about including items such as the company’s founding story, product-market fit, product roadmap and competitive landscape.

Avoid going into heavy detail regarding executives’ professional histories prior to the company in question, culture or other items unrelated to the scope of work requested in the RFP.

Outline Company Messaging Strategy to Date

For any external marketing agency, it’s important to understand how your company talks about itself externally. Be sure to provide insight as to the level of success with this message and whether it’s integrated across departments (think: sales, marketing, customer success, etc.)

Specifically identify whether your company would like an agency, like Branded, to help revamp that messaging. Include in this section any relevant style guidelines so that we can be sure to align all verbiage in a proposal with that of your company.

Additionally, outlining (confidentially, of course) any negative sentiment, crises or other notable public dissension of the company’s products, services or executives. It’s important for our agency to understand these circumstances up front so we can strategize on avoiding them or irradiating them altogether.

Identify the Services or Scope of Work

At Branded, our scopes of work are customized. While our services generally fall into a few general buckets, it’s important to be even more specific in your RFP. For example, you might want to engage our agency on a public relations campaign. But will you need outbound media strategy? Crisis communications? Corporate messaging?

If it’s organic social — will you need us to design art? Engage in community management?

Within each area of service there’s even more specificity as to what we can do for your company. It’s important for you to tell us how you can help.

Be Clear About Your Goals and Objectives

Probably the most important section of your RFP, your goals and objectives provide us with KPIs should we decide to work together.

We understand that our services are part of a larger marketing mix or plan. And that what we do needs to have outcomes that materially impact your business. Tell us specifically how we can do that.

Would you like Branded to respond to your RFP? Email us at