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Can you market your business to the Federal government with any real-world success?

Most businesses grow their customer base and increase their bottom line through marketing. They focus on putting their products and services in front of their target customer. They find ways to engage prospective customers and drive sales that create and maintain profitability.

But for whatever reason, too many companies make the transition to the federal contracting space and stop marketing. They think they no longer need to market their business, like the government will come to them.

Here’s the deal: You can’t assume that fulfilling the administrative requirements is enough to have success as a federal contractor. Just adding your business to the Central Contractor Registration (CCR) database or replying to Request for Proposals (RFPs) isn’t enough.

The truth is businesses seeking government contracts MUST market their services and build brand awareness just like they would in the private sector!

Companies need to map out business development activities as federal contractors just like they do with the B2B or B2C activities. That means facilitating relationships with agency procurement officers and making the rounds at various networking events.

Just how DOES one go about marketing their good and services to the federal government?

Just What Should You Be Marketing?

Start by marketing your most important asset – a stellar reputation. A successful track record of providing high quality, innovative products and services goes a long way toward ensuring your success as a government vendor.

Next, start the work of building relationships. Networking is a key component of creating awareness of your brand. Talk to people, forge relationships, and create partnerships and alliances that are mutually beneficial both for your business and your teaming partners.

In the private sector, relationships are invaluable. Well, it’s the same in the public sector. Knowing how to go about building those relationships is a skill every prospective government contractor should learn.

Know Your Client & Make Contact

Effective marketing in the public sector is about finding out precisely what your clients’ needs and wants are. To effectively market your business, you need to know your client. If you want to do business with a specific government agency, you should know how that agency functions, what it does, its mission, and whom it serves. That’s the kind of insight that will help you figure out how you can provide the most value.

And make no mistake: Rumors of $600 toilet seats aside, Federal agencies are looking for value – the best quality at the best (not the cheapest) price.

Federal agencies publish a list of the contracting opportunities available for small businesses. You can learn about upcoming opportunities through trade magazines, and by attending industry networking events and trade shows.

Once you have enough information, don’t be afraid to reach out to procurement officers directly or through an intermediary like the Small Business Administration. Make sure agencies know you exist, but don’t try to sell yourself before you established a good relationship.

Get Ahead Of The Procurement Cycle

Another strategy that will enable you to effectively market your business to the federal government is to get ahead of the procurement cycle. Make it a point to get to know procurement officers before they are looking to buy your product or service.

When you contact a government agency, your goal should be creating a dialogue with procurement officers so they know who you are long before they need your services. That way, by the time RFPs are released for the products and services you provide, you will already have the relationships in place with decision-makers who know you and are aware of your value offering.

Don’t think of new business as something that’s given, but rather as something that’s attracted.

Forge Partnerships

Sub-contracting is a good way to learn the federal contracting process. Vendors who win prime contracts valued over a certain threshold must provide a sub-contractor plan which involves the participation of a small business.

Large companies need small companies with whom they can partner to deliver on the terms of their federal contract. Your business can benefit by finding out which companies have been awarded federal contracts and seeing if there is a way for your company to serve as a provider for the prime contractor.

Check out SUB-net, a government service that matches prime contractors with sub-contractors.

Success in government contracting is not just about meeting the minimum requirements of a particular RFP. It also requires you to research and learn the ins and outs of the government procurement process. Whether in the private or the public sector, your ability to effectively market your business will play a crucial role in your ultimate success.

Can you market your business to the Federal government with any real-world success?

Most businesses grow their customer base and increase their bottom line through marketing. They focus on putting their products and services in front of their target customer. They find ways to engage prospective customers and drive sales that create and maintain profitability.

But for whatever reason, too many companies make the transition to the federal contracting space and stop marketing. They think they no longer need to market their business, like the government will come to them.

Here’s the deal: You can’t assume that fulfilling the administrative requirements is enough to have success as a federal contractor. Just adding your business to the Central Contractor Registration (CCR) database or replying to Request for Proposals (RFPs) isn’t enough.

The truth is businesses seeking government contracts MUST market their services and build brand awareness just like they would in the private sector!

Companies need to map out business development activities as federal contractors just like they do with the B2B or B2C activities. That means facilitating relationships with agency procurement officers and making the rounds at various networking events.

Just how DOES one go about marketing their good and services to the federal government?

Just What Should You Be Marketing?

Start by marketing your most important asset – a stellar reputation. A successful track record of providing high quality, innovative products and services goes a long way toward ensuring your success as a government vendor.

Next, start the work of building relationships. Networking is a key component of creating awareness of your brand. Talk to people, forge relationships, and create partnerships and alliances that are mutually beneficial both for your business and your teaming partners.

In the private sector, relationships are invaluable. Well, it’s the same in the public sector. Knowing how to go about building those relationships is a skill every prospective government contractor should learn.

Know Your Client & Make Contact

Effective marketing in the public sector is about finding out precisely what your clients’ needs and wants are. To effectively market your business, you need to know your client. If you want to do business with a specific government agency, you should know how that agency functions, what it does, its mission, and whom it serves. That’s the kind of insight that will help you figure out how you can provide the most value.

And make no mistake: Rumors of $600 toilet seats aside, Federal agencies are looking for value – the best quality at the best (not the cheapest) price.

Federal agencies publish a list of the contracting opportunities available for small businesses. You can learn about upcoming opportunities through trade magazines, and by attending industry networking events and trade shows.

Once you have enough information, don’t be afraid to reach out to procurement officers directly or through an intermediary like the Small Business Administration. Make sure agencies know you exist, but don’t try to sell yourself before you established a good relationship.

Get Ahead Of The Procurement Cycle

Another strategy that will enable you to effectively market your business to the federal government is to get ahead of the procurement cycle. Make it a point to get to know procurement officers before they are looking to buy your product or service.

When you contact a government agency, your goal should be creating a dialogue with procurement officers so they know who you are long before they need your services. That way, by the time RFPs are released for the products and services you provide, you will already have the relationships in place with decision-makers who know you and are aware of your value offering.

Don’t think of new business as something that’s given, but rather as something that’s attracted.

Forge Partnerships

Sub-contracting is a good way to learn the federal contracting process. Vendors who win prime contracts valued over a certain threshold must provide a sub-contractor plan which involves the participation of a small business.

Large companies need small companies with whom they can partner to deliver on the terms of their federal contract. Your business can benefit by finding out which companies have been awarded federal contracts and seeing if there is a way for your company to serve as a provider for the prime contractor.

Check out SUB-net, a government service that matches prime contractors with sub-contractors.

Success in government contracting is not just about meeting the minimum requirements of a particular RFP. It also requires you to research and learn the ins and outs of the government procurement process. Whether in the private or the public sector, your ability to effectively market your business will play a crucial role in your ultimate success.

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