4 Steps to Submit a Successful Project Bid
Any vendor in the multifamily market will quickly realize there are certain patterns pertaining to the bid process. It can sometimes be confusing and even a bit frustrating when trying to navigate the bid process without a plan. These four steps will help you better navigate the bid process so you can provide the best assistance to your customers, and be the best stewards of your time and resources to yourself and your company.
1. Establish an initial meeting with your customer
Establish a relationship with your customer by having a roughly 20-minute sit down meeting with them. This will allow you to get to know the customer and evaluate how your service or product can best serve their needs and it will help determine if you and your customer will be a good fit for the project.
During your initial meeting, don’t just think about providing a proposal based only on what the customer says they need! Determine the factors that are going into why your customer is interested in a project. Make an honest evaluation based on this information as to whether a partnership makes sense. Ask the customer questions to make sure you have a full understanding of the scope of work. Sometimes, the customer may have thought they needed something a certain way, but after talking through it, you find a better solution to fit their needs. Use your expertise and knowledge to make a recommendation that’s in the customer’s best interest.
2. Tailor your product to fit the customer’s needs
If you decide to move forward with creating a proposal, utilize the information you gathered in the initial meeting to tailor your proposal to the customer’s specific needs. This is where most of the work occurs for any vendor, which is why it is so important to determine in the initial meeting which of your products and services are truly needed.
3. Schedule a time to meet in person to present your proposal
The time to “sell” your services is not in the initial meeting but in the proposal review meeting. This meeting should be the fun part! If you have done your job well by gathering the needed information and tailoring your proposal to the customer’s needs, then a partnership should be a no brainer. Refer back to the customer’s specific requests and show off your product or service by explaining how each provides a solution to their needs.
4. Ask for a referral
There is no better time to see if your product or service can be of value to another customer than after the proposal review meeting. Even if the customer decides that it is not in their best interest to utilize your product or service, they should at the very least know you better as a person and see how hard you were willing to work to provide them the best solution to their problems. So ask!
This article was written by Bobby High with Ruppert Landscaping, as a part of the XCEL Committee's goal to provide regular, educational, posts for TAA's blog.