Do not wait for your customers to bring you business but identify opportunities for them that will turn into business for you.
Some players will wait to receive a request for a quotation for equipment or services that their client will include in the offer for which they are currently bidding for the end-user. This may work for recurring businesses and on markets where there is a shortage of suppliers. However, there is no doubt that most sales professionals will consider:
Some players will not just wait to receive the request for quotation but will manage to know (from the direct client himself, from end-users, or from other players) that their usual direct client is bidding or will shortly bid (much better!). He will proactively contact the direct client to include its equipment/service on its bid. Any sales professional will agree that:
Eventually, some players will actively chase business opportunities for their customers: that they might have not identified themselves. If you manufacture and sell inverters, one of your job, as a business developer, will be to identify turnkey installation projects (where inverter supply will be definitively part of the scope of work) and inform companies that may be in a position to bid for the, full scope of the tender and therefore your potential direct customer.
If you have a good intimacy with the end-user publishing this RFQ and in the case for example the installer is a new player in this country you could introduce the installer to the end-user.
This strategy will strongly increase the opportunity to sell your products to the direct customer you have brought the opportunity to and that you have introduced to the end- user if and when he will be awarded for the turnkey solar installation project.
The most successful business development strategy is when an organization is successful in converting a customer into a key partner. Turning a customer into a partner requires a drastic change of mindset and a global effort from the whole company.
Build a ramp-up strategy with a partner
Let’s take an example of a company SYS CONTROL designing Control Systems in Germany for turnkey substation projects for an end-user OVIMO based in Malawi. Till now the strategy of the Commercial Director of SYS CONTROL was:
But for some years now, the competition is getting harder and harder: New players from South Europe and India have been approaching OVIMO and are now accepted as vendors, the new players are creating as well a good intimacy with OVIMO engineers, SYS CONTROL solutions do not have a key differentiating factor to justify the higher price of their solution compared with lower-priced players. In the recent bids, the hit rate is decreasing as winning EPC’s are able to find other solutions than SYS CONTROL and consequently, the sales are decreasing.
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