How to Make Your Upwork Proposal Unforgettable: Top Tips for Leaving a Lasting Impression

Welcome to the wonderful world of Upwork proposals! If you’re looking to land that dream project, then you’ll need to learn how to make a lasting impression with your proposal. The truth is, your proposal is your first and often only chance to impress a client and stand out from the crowd.

That’s why I’ve put together this article to give you the top tips for leaving a lasting impression with your Upwork proposal. Whether you’re a seasoned freelancer or new to the platform, these tips will help you win over clients and land those projects you’ve been dreaming of. So, let’s dive in and learn how to make your Upwork proposal unforgettable!

Research Your Client and Customize Your Proposal

You’ve heard the old saying, “know thy client”? Okay, that might not be the exact phrase, but you get the idea. If you want to make a good impression in your Upwork proposal, it’s crucial to do your research and understand your client’s needs. Here are some tips to help you get started:

  1. Take a deep dive into your client’s project description and any additional information they’ve provided. What are they looking for specifically? What problems are they trying to solve? What goals do they want to achieve? The more you can understand their needs, the better you can tailor your proposal to meet them.
  2. Consider the client’s preferences. Do they have a particular communication style? Are there any specific requirements they’ve mentioned? Do they have a favorite color or font? Okay, that last one might be a stretch, but you get the idea. The more you can cater to their preferences, the more they’ll feel like you’re the perfect fit for their project.

Now, let’s take a look at some examples of successful customized proposals (these are hypotheticals, but useful for thinking this through):

  1. Jane was applying for a project that required creating content for a website in the healthcare industry. Jane took the time to research the client’s website and noticed that they had a specific section for patient testimonials. In her proposal, Jane suggested incorporating patient stories into the content to make it more engaging and relatable. The client loved the idea and hired Jane on the spot.
  2. Jim was applying for a project that required creating a logo for a new business. Jim noticed that the client’s previous logos all had a similar color scheme and font style. In his proposal, Jim presented several logo concepts that used the client’s preferred colors and fonts, along with a few unique twists that made them stand out. The client was impressed by Jim’s attention to detail and hired him for the project.

So there you have it – with a little bit of research and customization, you can make your Upwork proposal stand out and leave a lasting impression on potential clients.

Show Your Personality and Passion

Let’s face it, nobody wants to work with a robot. While it’s important to maintain professionalism in your Upwork proposal, injecting a bit of your own personality can make all the difference in leaving a lasting impression.

First and foremost, it’s essential to show your passion for the project. Explain why you’re excited about the opportunity, and how your skills and experience align with the client’s needs. Don’t be afraid to be enthusiastic and genuine – clients want to work with people who are genuinely excited about their project.

But how do you show your personality without coming across as unprofessional?

  • One tip is to use conversational language in your proposal. Write as if you’re speaking directly to the client, and avoid using overly formal or technical language.
  • Another way to inject your personality is to use personal anecdotes or examples in your proposal. Share a relevant story or experience that demonstrates your skills or passion for the project. Just be sure to keep it concise and relevant – you don’t want to go off on a tangent or overshare.
  • Finally, don’t be afraid to add a touch of humor or creativity to your proposal, if it’s appropriate for the project and client. For example, you could use a clever or attention-grabbing subject line, or include a relevant meme or GIF in your proposal. Just be sure to use good judgment and avoid anything that could be seen as unprofessional or offensive.

Remember, showing your personality and passion can help you stand out from the competition and leave a lasting impression on potential clients. Just be sure to keep it professional, relevant, and appropriate for the project and client.

Highlight Your Relevant Experience and Skills

Now that you’ve personalized your proposal and shown off your personality and passion, it’s time to get down to business and highlight your relevant experience and skills.

One of the biggest mistakes Upwork newbies make is assuming that clients will take the time to dig through their profiles and portfolios to figure out if they’re a good fit for the project. Don’t make this mistake! You need to make it crystal clear why you’re the perfect fit for the job.

Here are some tips for presenting your experience and skills in a clear and concise manner:

  • Focus on relevant experience: Don’t waste time listing every job you’ve ever had. Instead, focus on the experience that’s most relevant to the project at hand.
  • Use bullet points: Bullet points are a great way to break up text and make your experience and skills easy to scan.
  • Use specific examples: Instead of just saying you’re good at something, provide specific examples of projects you’ve worked on that demonstrate your skills.
  • Quantify your accomplishments: Whenever possible, use numbers to quantify your accomplishments. For example, instead of saying “I increased website traffic,” say “I increased website traffic by 50%.”

Here are some examples of phrases you can include in your proposal that effectively highlight relevant experience and skills:

  • In my previous role as a social media manager for XYZ Company, I increased their Instagram following by 10,000 followers in just three months.
  • As a copywriter with five years of experience, I’ve written sales pages that have generated over $1 million in revenue for my clients.
  • I have a bachelor’s degree in graphic design and have worked on branding projects for clients in a variety of industries, including healthcare, tech, and retail.

By highlighting your relevant experience and skills in a clear and concise manner, you’ll make it easy for clients to see why you’re the perfect fit for the job. And that’s the key to making an unforgettable Upwork proposal!

Provide a Clear and Compelling Value Proposition

Next, let’s talk about how to make your value proposition pop! This is where you’ll explain the unique value you bring to the project and convince the client that you’re the best person for the job. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Identify the client’s pain points: Before you start writing, take a moment to put yourself in the client’s shoes. What problems are they trying to solve with this project? What pain points are they experiencing? Once you’ve identified these pain points, you can craft a value proposition that speaks directly to their needs.
  2. Explain how you’ll solve the problem: Now that you know the client’s pain points, it’s time to explain how you’ll solve them. Be specific and use concrete examples to illustrate your approach. For example, if you’re a graphic designer pitching a website redesign, you might explain how your design will improve the user experience and increase conversions.
  3. Show the benefits: Don’t just focus on the features of your solution – make sure to highlight the benefits as well. How will the client’s business be better off as a result of your work? Will they save time, increase revenue, or improve customer satisfaction? Make it clear why your solution is worth investing in.
  4. Use numbers and data: If you have any relevant numbers or data to back up your claims, use them! For example, if you’re a copywriter, you might mention that your last project resulted in a 20% increase in click-through rates. This will help make your value proposition more concrete and persuasive.

Here are a few examples of successful proposals that nailed the value proposition:

  • A social media marketer pitching a campaign for a new product launch: “I’ll create a social media campaign that generates buzz and drives sales. My approach has resulted in a 50% increase in conversions for my last client, and I’m confident I can do the same for you.”
  • A web developer pitching a site redesign: “I’ll build you a site that’s not only visually stunning but also optimized for search engines and designed to convert visitors into customers. My last project resulted in a 75% increase in leads, and I’m excited to bring the same results to your business.”
  • A virtual assistant pitching administrative support: “I’ll take care of all the day-to-day administrative tasks that are bogging you down, so you can focus on growing your business. With my help, my last client was able to double their revenue in just six months.”

By following these tips and crafting a clear and compelling value proposition, you’ll set yourself apart from the competition and increase your chances of winning projects on Upwork.

Use Attention-Grabbing Visuals and Formatting

Your Upwork proposal is essentially your business card, so why not make it look as polished and professional as possible? Visuals and formatting can be incredibly effective in grabbing your client’s attention and making your proposal stand out from the competition.

Importance of using attention-grabbing visuals and formatting:

  • Visuals and formatting can help you convey information more effectively and clearly.
  • They can also help you showcase your creativity and attention to detail, which can be a huge selling point for potential clients.

Tips for using visuals and formatting to enhance your proposal:

  • Use headings and subheadings to organize your proposal and make it easy to scan.
  • Bold and italicize key points to draw attention to them.
  • Use bullet points to break up text and make it more digestible.
  • Include images or graphics that are relevant to your proposal and visually appealing.

Examples of successful proposals that use visuals and formatting effectively:

  • A proposal for a graphic design project that includes a visually stunning portfolio showcasing the designer’s work.
  • A proposal for a website redesign that uses headings and bullet points to clearly outline the proposed changes.
  • A proposal for a social media marketing campaign that includes attention-grabbing images and graphics to showcase the proposed content.

Remember, your proposal is your chance to make a great first impression on potential clients. So don’t be afraid to get creative with your visuals and formatting to make your proposal unforgettable.

A Proposal-Writing Technique “Stolen” From FBI Profilers

Imagine having a secret weapon in your Upwork arsenal, one that allows you to understand exactly what clients are looking for in their job postings, and how to craft a proposal that will make them want to hire you on the spot. This technique, borrowed from the elite FBI profilers, is a game-changer for Upwork success.

With this technique, you’ll be able to analyze every job posting like a crime scene, uncovering all the hidden psychological clues left by the client. Armed with this information, you’ll be able to craft a proposal that speaks directly to their needs and desires, making you the obvious choice for the job.

Once you master this technique, it’ll almost be like “hit send, make money” on the proposals you write. And the best part? You’ll be doing it with ease, standing out from the sea of other proposals and becoming the go-to choice for clients.

Where can you learn this technique? That’s where my book, Upwork Essentials, comes in. Inside, I teach you step-by-step how to build an Upwork profile that stands out, how to write proposals that get you hired, and how to create a winning strategy for success on the platform. And of course, I cover this powerful FBI profiler technique in-depth, so you can start using it to your advantage right away.

If you’re ready to take your Upwork game to the next level and start winning more clients, you can learn more about Upwork Essentials here.

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John Morris


I’m a 15-year veteran of freelance web development. I’ve worked with bestselling authors and average Joe’s next door. These days, I focus on helping other freelancers build their freelance business and their lifestyles.

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