As a result of today’s highly competitive marketplace comprised of ever-growing and competing industries, businesses must be strategic in marketing their products and services to ensure their success. This holds true for businesses in both commercial and government industries.
Consumers, both individuals and the federal government, have the power of choice. They have the luxury of choosing from a variety of companies participating in the same industry.
1. Create and Foster Positive Partnerships/Relationships. Relationship-based sales often drive profitability. Leaving a lasting and positive impression with the end user may result in opportunities for future business and provides a great opportunity to market your company. With the federal government, it is particularly critical to ensure that you establish relationships, maintain open communication with the customer or potential customer, and create a positive experience.
2. Establish Credibility. There are a number of ways to establish credibility. For example, this can be done by projecting a professional image through emails, phone calls, social media content, and a company’s capability statement. When it comes to buying, the government looks for companies that have demonstrated they have the capability to successfully fulfill contract requirements. Therefore, anything your business can do to establish credibility and make the buying process easier may help to increase your chances of getting a contract.
3. Prepare to Speak the Language. The manner in which you speak with the federal government and the ways in which you word your proposals matters. Successful “business-to-government” marketers use appropriate government lingo. Speaking the lingo will demonstrate your company’s knowledge and familiarity with the government, which in turn reassures the government that you can successfully work with them. There are “b-to-g” glossaries that provide words and definitions devoted to the language of the government.
4. Promote Your Company’s Strengths. Keep track of your positioning in the market. Know who your competitors are and set yourself apart whether it be through your product, service, price, or brand image. Capitalize on past performance and provide relevant information on any awards and recommendations from highly credited sources that will help to elevate the quality of your product or service. In doing so, the federal government will begin to see you as a viable contender and valuable resource.
5. Stay in the Know. Knowledge is definitely power. In addition to distinguishing yourself from your competitors and finding new ways to set your business apart, spend time researching government agencies that are looking for services/products that your business offers. For example, your company should look for future contract opportunities by tracking bills as they work their way through Congress or by researching expiring contracts that fit in your business lane. You should also regularly monitor any requests for information or proposals that are of interest to your company. Registering on sites such as fbo.gov and fpds.gov will allow you to receive alerts when relevant opportunities arise, as well as contracts that are nearing their expiration date and ones that will be open for bid.