Mark Amtower

OPINION

One more must-do for 2013: Communicate

Without you find the right people and they won't find you

In my last column I discussed “Five Must Do” activities for fiscal 2103:

  • Concentrate: Focus on 1 or 2 agencies.
  • Collaborate: Take teaming, partnering and sub-contracting to a new, longer term level.
  • Educate: Make certain your team is operating at or near 100% by providing continuing education opportunities.
  • Associate: Take networking to the next level in our relationship-driven market.
  • Differentiate: Clearly define the skill(s) you bring to the table.

There is one more step in this process, and that is to communicate. Success is going to be predicated on being found by the right people - customers, partners, primes, press and others.

The only way to be found is to be active in your marketing communications program and to become more visible in all of the venues where each group you need to reach is most likely to find you. You need to be visible in a positive way on a regular basis. Showing up on the radar on an occasional basis is not good enough.

This does not mean you have to be on the radar of the entire market. In all likelihood your products or services are not needed by everyone. It does mean that you need to define your niche carefully and find multiple ways to become more visible to your niche in a perpetual manner.

The best way to get on and stay on the radar is to add value to your market niche in as many ways as possible. Finding, developing and delivering content is the best way to do this.

There are many venues for developing and delivering content. Among these venues are:

  • Traditional PR and media relations
  • Blogs
  • Webinars
  • Video
  • White papers
  • Podcasts
  • Posting articles, starting and otherwise participating in discussions on social networks like LinkedIn.
  • Speaking (large group, small group, one on one)

In order to add value, the content must be germane to those you seek to influence.

It is always about relationships: If they know you, they are more likely to buy from you or partner with you. The more visible you are, the more likely it is they know you. The more good content you develop, find and share, the more your value rises in your niche.

This does not mean you have to do each of the above activities, but pick a few and do them regularly. The dividends are huge.

 

About the Author

Mark Amtower advises government contractors on all facets of business-to-government (B2G) marketing and leveraging LinkedIn.

Reader Comments

Mon, Dec 3, 2012 Gerry Simone Washington

Mark-- This is very well put. After helping countless companies in the region, and especially as I recently served as a GovCon editor, I am astounded at how the communications function is marginalized in this sector. It's never been more important leading into 2013. THANKS! Gerry Simone

Sun, Dec 2, 2012 Chuck Viator Wash Metro Area

In my opinion there is another job to tackle, in 2013, if your to-dos are to provide the yield intended. The trend on the part of the government to adopt the acquisition strategy of Low Price / Technically Acceptable (LPTA) has to be met head on. The issue, in a report, eloquently addressed by TASC and reported by Washington Technology (http://preview.tinyurl.com/c3nuu5m), a good case is made for when LPTA is appropriate and when it is not. As you can imagine the proposed use is not being utilize, more and more. Marginalization of real value and differentiation is not in the best interest of mission completion, the tax payer, or the contracting community. It will erode the capabilities of contractors and certainly the government is not going to grow those capabilities organically. I believe the benchmarking and lessons learned on LPTA contract awards will provide fact based proof that supports TASC’s conclusions. I am not sure what the next step is but I am sure it needs to be on the agenda of industry and industry / government associations.

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