No doubt about, selling to the government is being impacted by the economy. If you’ve not seen it in your own business, you’re either not paying attention, failing to look ahead, or ignoring the signs. Times are tight, and government buyers at all levels are feeling the pinch. Even if their funds haven’t been cut, there’s a threat they will be. Plus, they know that they are being watched more closely than ever. Of course, government won’t stop buying (well, I guess the federal government could if Congress can’t come to terms on a budget)…but, they’re buying more carefully.
So, what do you do about it? Inc magazine says you should be proactive. You shouldn’t wait for your government customers to come to you, it says in an April article, you should go to them with ideas for saving money. You may find you end up with more business, not less.
It goes back to our oft-stated mantra about relationships being so very important in government sales. You know your government customers are struggling, so help them out. This doesn’t mean voluntarily slashing your prices. You shouldn’t. But, it does mean getting creative.
Is it possible that you have new products or solutions that can help provide efficiencies? Is it possible they’re not using your products and solutions as many ways as they could? Do you have success stories to share of other customers finding efficiencies? Or, perhaps could you offer assistance with problems you may not even be aware of that are keeping them your customers up at night? Why not schedule a meeting, and find out?
In other words, don’t hide behind the economy, like so many people and organizations do. Use it to strengthen your relationships. I guarantee you that, properly done, you’ll benefit in the long run.
All the best,