Here we offer our thoughts on how Competitive Intelligence defines your chance of winning a tender or a piece of business. It helps remove the frustration of doubt and what may be.
Same old story
You know the story. You worked your butt off to get a fantastic proposal that meets their needs. And you get an excellent document to your prospective new client on time. This situation and the work involved is magnified when replying to a public body or major charity.
You may spend weeks on questions that have no relevance to what you can do for them. You know you can do a great job, so much better than the incumbent. The incumbent has failed many times, so you expect a positive response.
You have chased a couple of times for feedback. You receive the one-line email saying they have gone with someone else.
Same old feedback
It’s not on every occasion that it’s an inside carve-up. But a word in the feedback like “interesting” is usually a clue to indicate that they want the same old stuff they’ve had before. More likely from the same supplier. And then there is the usual one about “lacking experience”. When your collective backgrounds are substantially more experienced that whomever they use. It really means we don’t want to rock the boat.
You will make us have to think and work for a living. The situation is even more galling because, deep down, you knew already. You knew it wouldn’t turn out well, but you stuck your chest out and thought positive affirmations.
Trouble is the person replying to you may as well have had the winning bid’s director in the room with them. Long before you stare at the mountain of paper, they expect you to complete or put you off.
Before starting the proposal and answering the same old questions. Utilise the full force of Competitive Intelligence. To understand the situation by asking questions like:
- Who are the incumbents of the contract?
- Why are they offering the contract? Is it a new requirement or an extension?
- Who does this company talk to within the organisation?
- Who are the real power holders with the organisation offering the contract opportunity?
- Do these key people have influence within any potential bidding companies?
- What’s the organisation appetite for change?
- Whats the organisation track record on awarding contracts? Do they usually go to the same providers?
- Does the organisation really want change, or do they just want more of the same?
- What else could you be doing rather than filling out a proposal?
Once you have found the contracts has been awarded to the usual suspects, it’s essential to get real feedback. This feedback need is equally true if you win the contract. The best analysis tool for this situation is win-loss analysis.
What is a win-loss analysis?
A win-Loss analysis is a comprehensive, systematic and ongoing analysis. It looks at why your business won and lost deals. Win/Loss delivers powerful insight to transform your company. Making it into a sales machine.
Why conduct win-loss analysis?
It has to be essential to get to the bottom of a customers decision-maker process. And to understand how the market sees you. What you are missing or why you are attracting customers? And which competitors are getting the better of you? And most importantly, why?
Also, to determine if you stand a chance of getting the contract next time. The Win-Loss analysis is a potent Intelligence tool. It allows you to see any trends and patterns early. To enable you to either keep doing what you are doing but more of it. Or getting your act together and doing something different to get back on course.
You will be shocked and surprised by the results.
Always create open-ended questions. Yes, and no answers rarely tell us anything. And the conversation will flow better without these closed questions. Never turn the interview into a sales call and never get defensive. It’s the interviewee job to tell you how it is, not you.
Piece of paper
Once you have as much feedback as you think you need. You have answered questions like those above simply grab a piece of paper.
Draw a line down the middle of the page. On the left-hand side of the paper, write down all the reasons you will get the contract. On the right-hand side, note the reason why you won’t get the deal.
Then you will either stand a good chance of earning some money for a job well done. Or you will have saved yourself a lot of time and energy.
How Competitive Intelligence defines your chance of winning a tender
Here we offered our thoughts on how Competitive Intelligence defines your chance of winning a tender or proposal. It helps remove the frustration of doubt and what may be.