Many businesses are starting to explore ways of improving their sustainability by providing contract services for the local government or other authorities. This makes a lot of sense because if there’s one thing you can say about the local government it’s that they will have large procurement needs and they are also in a position where they will be able to pay good, stable prices.
If you are tired with working with price sensitive companies that don’t pay on time, then it makes sense to try to work with the government – and get favorable contracts.
But how can you reach those valuable government contracts? Do you always have to be on the lookout and bid for them? Or can you buy local government email addresses and reach out for work or buyers yourself?
The answer is that both are options. Some government contracts will be advertised. If you can bid for them, then it is well worth doing so. However, the contracts that are advertised are often put up late – not giving you much time to bid. In addition, the requirements that the government puts on external bidders are very stringent.
When you buy local government email addresses, you have the chance to contact government officials directly and advertise your services to them. Now, that doesn’t mean that you get an instant foot in the door. Far from it. Government officials hear from a lot of people. They will be suspicious of anyone who reaches out to them with a sales opportunity immediately.
That’s why it’s important to start with a gentle intro, and to build up a relationship with the people you email. Never send out unsolicited, bulk commercial emails to government officials. At best, the emails will get deleted and you will have wasted your time. At worst, you will end up in a permanent spam filter rule so that none of your mails will ever get through.
That’s why you should start by reaching out to people that you think will have a genuine interest in what you have to say. Pick the departments that you want to reach, and then buy local government email addresses in a big, filterable database. Work through that database and look for the right contacts in the right departments and reach out to them.
That way you will be able to build up a relationship with them. Introduce yourself, offer something simple and low friction to them, such as an ebook download, and then from there try to set up a meeting with them. You will be amazed at how receptive people are to the idea of going for a coffee. Once you are a real person with real ideas to them, you will be able to get to know them better.
You may be wondering why you would buy email addresses instead of hunting them down yourself. Well, while it’s true that the information is generally out there in the public domain, it is much easier to reach people if you are able to get the right name and the right email address and phone number directly.
The information published on a lot of government websites is general and puts you in touch with a person who works mostly as a “gatekeeper”. When you are looking to talk to someone who is in a specific job role, it helps to know their name. Rather than trawling through websites that are often opaque and difficult to navigate, why not get yourself put in front of the right people straight away?
Even if you can’t get contract work out of it, or become a supplier to a local school, government office or contact center, at least not at this stage – you will benefit from having the conversation with them. You will learn what it is you need to be considered for government contract work – whether that is insurance, policies, a certain amount of trading history, or more.
You will also start building up that all important brand with the departments in question. Sometimes, you might not be in a position to be the official supplier for all of the IT solutions to the library, but when a few machines break and they need some new hard drives, they could bring you in for that. Those small jobs won’t keep your company in business alone, but they will put you on the path to becoming a recognized supplier and that is an important thing.
It’s hard to get your foot in the door with local authorities, but it is worth it. In a world where commercial contracts change hands every few months sometimes, and prices are always being driven down, the security of having a contract with a robust statutory body is something that you cannot deny.
Start with smaller local government departments until you build up the infrastructure that you need to be able to take on bigger jobs. You could work with the local libraries, government supported schools, the local government funded healthcare services, or even for the councillors themselves.
Once you have been accepted as a service provider within one branch of the public sector, you should find that it is easier to get other branches to be receptive of your marketing messages. So, why not download a database of local government contact details today and make a start on your outreach?