What to do now to win in FY21
Make a List and a Call Plan
Who and what goes on that list?
- The names of people you met that you need to stay in contact with. This includes government personnel like contracting professionals, small business professionals, and individuals that work in the agencies you want to support. (Anytime you have contact with a human within the government that goes reasonably well is a golden opportunity to cultivate a real relationship).
- The names of individuals in charge of solutions offered by companies that BEAT you! (Why? Today’s competitor is tomorrow’s team mate.)
- Make a list of other individuals in small businesses who offer solutions that compliment your own solutions.
- Any impending contract opportunities that will be competed in the next 18 – 24 months. (These represent an opportunity to use sales and marketing opportunities to potentially shape the requirement once you find out who is leading this acquisition.
Before you pick up the phone or type an email, what other data do you need to finalize a call plan?
- Agencies you want to target – based on your review of past contract data and opportunities you found by scanning the contracting landscape that will be competed in the next 18 – 24 months
- Names and contact information of the individuals in those agencies working in the office or program that you want to support that are either decision makers – or that have the ear of the decision maker
- Information about these people (where have they worked; are they on LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and if so do you have common connections or groups; hobbies; professional associations)
- Agencies where you have contacts like those identified above – these people can introduce you sometimes
- Who is providing support to the agency in the area you want to work (competitors and potential partners too)
- Competitors where you have contacts like those above – maybe they are looking for a new opportunity – or maybe they know someone in the agency that can facilitate a few key introductions
- Google the agency, the individuals you identified and the companies currently providing support and note any information that can give you perspective on what is going on in the target agency and in program and requirements offices that you want to support
What is the goal of this?
Everyone wants to talk to the people you need to talk to.
By being prepared and taking the time to learn everything you can about the agency you want to support, you set yourself apart. You demonstrate that you are not just another small business that has not taken the time to learn the processes or the rules. You demonstrate that the government doesn’t buy ANYTHING. But the government’s buyers, who do, are people first.
This is the first step to becoming known, liked and trusted.
Every business needs to establish trust in order to win a contract. It’s hard to do this if the first time they heard of you is when they receive your proposal.