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You Can't Win Them All! 4 B2B Tactics To Use AFTER You Lose a Proposal --

08/02/2009

You can’t win them all.

And so what? You got to keep truckin’ along. That’s what separates professionals from amateurs. At the same time, though, you don’t want to spin your gears, waste time, or work any harder than you need to.

You got to keep truckin’ along. That’s what separates professionals from amateurs. At the same time, though, you don’t want to spin your gears, waste time, or work any harder than you need to.

Here are 4 simple tactics to use AFTER you lose a contractproposal, or bid. Actually, the first two can only be used after. The second two can be used at any time.

1) Mail a “thank you for considering my proposal” letter. Leave the door open for future opportunities. In many B2B sales situations, there’s a finite universe of buyers for your product and there’s also a finite universe of vendors who can supply your client. You want to be on all your potential customer’s short-list.

2) Ask for feedback. Every time you lose or don’t get the result you want, find out why. And be specific. This is the only way you can improve. In this situation, make it easy and non-threatening. Say something like: “…Now that it’s over I need your help…I believe in constant improvement…Could you tell me the top 3 reasons you hired the vendor you did and the top 3 reasons you didn’t hire us… I appreciate it…” You’ll be surprised at how many will take the time to respond, thoughtfully.

3) Send news about your success (post-loss). You want to imply that you can solve their problems and at the same time position yourself as an expert. Case Studies are a great tool in this situation.

4) Continue positioning your expertise. Because there’s a finite universe, you want to be on everyone’s short-list. And you want to be the first person they call when they have a new project. White Papers can be effectively used for this purpose.

What do you think about this? Is it a waste of time to use these tactics AFTER you’ve lost a proposal?

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