What can I do to improve the odds of my proposals getting chosen?

Here's what we've seen work better:

-Be personal and friendly
Don't copy/paste your proposals. If the client included a sound sample - take the time to listen to it and say something thoughtful about it and how you can help. They are looking for a partner, not to buy a box of cereal. Be genuine and honest about your skill and experience.

-It's not about price
Everyone wants to get a good deal, but we've seen it's not the most important thing for most clients. Musicians likely spent a long time working on their music. They want is someone who is an expert, professional and care about their music and about making them happy.

-Have positive verified reviews
The more jobs you close, the more verified reviews you'll have. The more positive verified reviews you have, the more jobs you'll get. Period. Clients want to know that someone other than 'you' said you were good and a pleasure to work with. This is perhaps the thing that helps most.

-Have a good and complete profile
Spend some time on your listing. Make sure the picture is good. Write personal, original, honest description. Don't try to be a generalist - it's better to be a specialist. Include sound samples (even Basic listings can add soundcloud files), include only real credits (people can smell fakes and nobody wants to work with one), verify your identity with facebook or linkedin, describe your work process.

-Offer a discount for clients who pre-fund multiple songs
Offer your absolute best rate for clients who fund multiple songs. this is a win-win approach and we see it working time and time again.

-Remind clients they have a layer of protection using SoundBetter.
This helps alleviate any potential anxiety. You can also personally commit to offering a refund if the client isn't satisfied.

-Start with a proposal
Lead with a quote. Don't ask clients for their budget or to answer questions you can get an answer to later. Recommend they select you and commit to making them happy.

-Never offer or agree to do a test mix
It's not only against our terms to offer a free service, it's also bad business. Pros don't offer free test mixes. It doesn't look good.

Keep at it. Don't get discouraged if your proposals don't get picked. It's not personal. This is a competitive field and it takes some perseverance to get gigs. Once you do, if you are good you usually earn a customer for life, which can be very rewarding.