Identify Your Customers
What agencies (state, county, city) buy the products/services you sell? Check their website for information about procurements with that agency.
Learn the Process
Learn the procurement process of each potential customer, including their identification system for contract and services.
Register in Washington’s Electronic Business Solution (WEBS)
WEBS is an internet-based bid notification system that many state agencies and educational institute use to notify businesses of opportunities. It takes approximately 5 – 10 minutes to sign up. Your firm will receive email notifications of bid opportunities that match commodity codes you select. http://www.des.wa.gov/services/ContractingPurchasing/Business/BidOpportunities/Pages/bidNotification.aspx
Register in the System for Award Management (SAM)
The System for Award Management (SAM) is the Official U.S. Government system that consolidated the capabilities of CCR/FedReg, ORCA, and EPLS. There is NO fee to register for this site.
Attend Pre-bid Meetings
This is where you will meet the prime contractors who are most likely to bid on the contract. Your marketing efforts should be focused on these folks.
Prepare a Capabilities Statement
Take it everywhere you go and hand it out to everyone you meet. Be sure to include examples of previous work and contact information.
Copy Best Practices
Talk with other certified firms who are successfully working on government contracts (inside and outside of your industry) and follow suit.
Be Patient and Persistent.
Developing new business relationships takes time. Don’t give up! Be willing to start small in order to build a record of past performance that is relevant to prime contractors.
Social media offers an inexpensive way to connect to potential customers. Research the applications that would best fit your business and learn.
If your bid does not earn you the job, ask why. This is valuable information that can help the next time around.