Early Game, mid game, and end game. A sales process can often last for weeks, months or even years, this all depends on the complexity of the sale, the value of the contract and the process being followed for procurement. Indeed, for organisations bidding on very complex, high value contracts, and competing through open-market competitive procurement processes, the process can be a test of endurance.
The key to success is to be working on the sale long before and well after the formal procurement process. Think of the overall sales process as three phases: the early game before the formal procurement process commences, the mid game which is the submission of a formal proposal, and the end game which is the post-submission phase. Smart bidders are working hard during each of these phases to understand the client and opportunity, shape the bid and position themselves as the best choice.
Most of our blogs are focussed on the mid game, so in this blog we’ve outlined below some things to think about to drive the sale during the early and end phases of the process:
Early game (pre-bid phase)
– Build relationship with the client to understand their vision, objectives, needs, concerns etc.
– Meet with key stakeholders to understand their perspectives and expectations
– Implement an external communications campaign to support your bid
– Build your credibility with the decision makers and influencers so that they see you are a desirable partner
– Influence the requirements and specifications of the contract, if possible, so that you are ideally placed to deliver the solution
– Agree your internal governance activities to get full support from the organisation
– Mobilise your team to ensure you have appropriate capability and capacity
– Formalise any partnerships you need in order to strengthen your competitiveness
– Develop your solution as far as practical in readiness for the bid
– Ensure you are invited to tender!
End game (post-bid phase)
– Maintain a core team of experts who can continue interaction with the client and ensure the client of your continued commitment
– Respond promptly and thoroughly to questions and clarifications
– Participate fully and passionately in workshops and presentations
– Use your interactions with the client to continue to strive for value for money, certainty in delivery and innovations
– Continue your external communications campaign to demonstrate your credibility and capability
– Maintain the same level of professionalism, enthusiasm and attention to detail as during the early and mid game phases
– Negotiate issues or contract terms with a collaborative, solutions-orientated, easy-to-deal-with attitude
– Begin delivery of any aspects of the contract you promised you would fast-track, such as securing approvals, setting up supply chains etc
– Prepare detailed mobilisation plans so that your delivery team can swing in to action as soon as you are announced as the preferred proponent
– Prepare internal and external communication plans that you can activate when you are announced as the preferred proponent.
Aurora Marketing can help organisations in each phase of the sales process. For help winning your next complex sale, call us today on 1300 976 312 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org