Selling to procurement: No One Cares About Your Product

Selling to procurement: No One Cares About Your Product

April 26, 2021
Procurement

Selling to procurement professionals is something that most people find frustrating, mainly because they are highly resistant to direct sales.

Why?

Well, no one in procurement cares about your product, they only care about making sure their organisation succeeds. That means the right product at the keenest possible price.

So the following sales techniques are bound to fail:

  1. Calling up a buyer and asking to meet them for a coffee.
  2. Promoting your product as either ‘revolutionary’ or ‘market leading’.
  3. Approaching them without having first done your homework.

When suppliers start talking about themselves, most procurement people hear a noise that sounds a lot like “I want to be richer”. In other words, a direct sale is really hard.

Suppliers need to not only solve buyers’ problems but be able to prove that they can solve buyers’ problems. That’s why it is critical to understand the problems that the buyer has, and to have independent proof or validation of your capabilities.

So, you need to invest in data and in research. You need to understand your buyer’s priorities and their challenges so that you can shape your offer to meet their needs.

Once you have a product that fits the buyer’s needs you want to get the message out; and here’s the dilemma: you want to be talked about but you shouldn’t be doing the talking.

Instead, you need to get credible people to talk about your product. For instance, companies that try and sell to government will pay thousands to sponsor think tanks to report on issues that are relevant to them. This approach creates a buzz around your company, without the bragging which can be so damaging.

Investing in brand awareness is also a common ploy, but it can be hard to measure whether that generates a significant return.

Finally, you can also get some success by promoting yourself to senior personnel that sit above procurement but you still need to have a good product fit and some sort of proof that your product can deliver, otherwise, trying to leverage yourself into government on the back of connections can backfire, just ask Lex Greensill.

If you’d like to find out more about our data and analysis services, get in touch.

June 9, 2021

Commit To Net Zero To Win Government Contracts.

....So says the Cabinet Office, with new measures released on World Environment Day that will require businesses to publish clear and credible...
June 2, 2021

Major Procurement Project For Inverness Castle

This week sees Highland Council publish the main construction and refurbishment tenders for the Inverness Castle Transformation project, through Public Contracts Scotland...
May 27, 2021

Six Considerations When Marketing To Governments.

We might say marketing to the government is similar to marketing to any other target market, particularly another B2B target market. And...
May 17, 2021

Data Mastery.

It's easy to say that you're a 'world leading' enterprise. It's much harder to back it up. But we genuinely believe that...
May 4, 2021

Recommendations For Tackling Gender Disparity For Governments

Clearly, the UK Government is a leader in the field of open data and transparency: it is this commitment to transparency as...
June 2, 2021

Does Government Business Correlate To Gender Disparity?

As part of our Procuring Inequality report, we've analysed whether winning government business equates to a gender pay disparity. By linking gender...
May 5, 2021

The Worst Performing Suppliers To Government In The Gender Pay Divide.

As our analysis of the gender pay gap within strategic suppliers to government from our Procuring Inequality report, showed a broad overlap...
May 18, 2021

Does The Number Of Women In Top Jobs Affect The Gender Pay Divide?

Through the creation of our report Procuring Inequality, we have analysed the proportion of women in the top jobs among the highest...
May 18, 2021

How The Gender Pay Gap Differs By Procurement Category.

As part of our exploration into the gender pay gap through our report, Procuring Inequality, we analysed the industry sectors and how...
April 29, 2021

Exploring The Gender Pay Gap in Strategic Suppliers To Government

From our report, Procuring Inequality, the disparity in the gender pay gap is stark when looking at the strategic suppliers to the...
April 29, 2021

Do Government Buyers Perform Better In Gender Parity?

Part of our report Procuring Inequality, includes a gender pay gap comparison between Government departments and significant suppliers to government. Our analysis...
April 28, 2021

Procuring Inequality: Our Report.

Spend Network is pleased to release our survey on the gender pay gap data in public procurement. We linked gender pay gap...
April 26, 2021

Our New Global Classification Tool

We recently launched our new global classification tool. Just three months later and we've been able to launch an upgraded version, which...
April 26, 2021

UK Government Procurement Under Pressure

Yesterday the FT published an article, £19bn of UK Covid-related contracts awarded without seeking rival bids. The report reviewed the value of...
April 26, 2021

8 Reasons Why Procurement Doesn’t Need Blockchain.

Blockchain is fundamentally a database, but rather than a database where one item is allowed to replace another, each change to the...

Newsletter

Compelling research, insights and data directly into your inbox.

Recent media stories

Search