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What Separates a Good Theme From a Bad Theme?

Good themes help you win. Bad themes can cost you the win.

Attributes of good themes:

  • Does it reflect a result or benefit to the customer instead of an attribute of your offering?
  • Does it matter?
  • Is it believable?
  • Does it address what the customer wants?
  • Does it discriminate you from your competition?
  • Does it reflect the conclusion you want the reader to reach?
  • Can it be scored?
See also:
Bid strategies and proposal themes

Bad Themes:

  • Do not pass the “So what?” test
  • Matter to the writer, but not to the evaluator
  • Are impossible or not true except in the most legalistic ways
  • Are true for everybody bidding or are universally true
  • Are not credible
  • Do not relate to the evaluation criteria
  • Are simply tacked on at the end instead of an integrated part of your story
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