Hunting Big Sales with Tom Searcy

Hunt Big Sales Blog

Insights for Finding, Landing and Harvesting Whale-Size Accounts

Latest "RFPs" Posts

A poem on RFPs by a reader! It is great!

You know you’ve done something right when one of your readers starts writing poetry about your work. Check out the fantastic poem about RFPs below! No, really.

Tom,

The other day I spontaneously started writing a poem triggered by your observations on the RFP process. Enjoy and feel free to share with your readers.

To all the people at Hunt Big Sales, thanks for the inspiration, motivation and information!

Thorsten Hoins
The Pollack PR Marketing Group

He ate and drank the precious Words,
And got our Team excited;
“A Big Consumer Brand” He said,
“And we have been invited!”
“Oh, this is great,” the Team rejoiced
“We’d love to work on that…”
Needless to say, all jumped aboard
In 15 Seconds flat!

Four weeks of Research, Toil and Thought,
Went into our Response;
We made our Deck look really good,
We pitched our Pros, (we cloaked our cons);
We answered every Question whole,
Obeying each Decree;
We even gave some great Ideas
Away to use – for free!

Alas, a teensy-weensy Fact,
Omitted in their Doc;
The Reason why we were invited
Was not because: We Rock!
Nor for the Breadth of our past Work
Our History transcends;
Neither our matching Expertise,
Or even ‘cause we’re Friends.
No, our Proposal’s Heft and Strength
Served very different Ends…

First Copy went to Paul and Mike
Messrs. Sarbanes and Oxley
(Methinks in Times of Bailout Boons
‘Tis an outmoded Proxy)
Next: Round up good Ideas for free
Not one – a whole Buffet!

Posted by Tom Searcy in RFPs.

How Obama’s Stimulus Package Could Give Small Businesses the Boost They Desperately Need

I recently posted this over at The Customer Collective, but wanted to share it here as well.  Over the next few weeks, I’ll be writing more about how small businesses can take advantage of the influx of government contracts I know we’ll see. Enjoy!

By now, every American has heard that President Obama is driving a massive economic stimulus package. This flow of cash in a suffering economy will be tantamount to flooding a dry river bed:  Manufacturers are holding their breath for automotive and military contracts. Construction companies are looking for the promised infrastructure renewal contracts. Energy companies have already launched a compelling campaign to get in on the action. And everyone knows what Wall Street and the automobile companies are up to. But what about the little guys?

Posted by Tom Searcy in RFPs.

The eleventh hour

It has all of the excitement of the big game, the high school play and your first illicit smoke rapped up in one. It’s “all you can eat night” at the adrenaline junkie café.

I’m talking about the night before the pitch for the big piece of business—it could be the final interview in an RFP process, a proposal meeting with the big prospect or the next step with your biggest client. Regardless, it’s show time and you and your team, (which could be no more than your pet, yourself and your coffee pot), are up late getting ready with all of the final details.

I’ve been through it a million times and I’ve watched dozens of clients go through it. This experience has taught me some key things that you should do to get it right in getting ready. But before I do that, let me share my worst mistakes ever…

• Opening the shrink-wrap on a software package that we had decided to use to create some of the elements of the next day’s pitch for the first time at 2am the morning of the meeting.

• Taking the red-eye from one pitch to get to the next pitch – that day I got the names, business issues and even the terms of the deal mixed up so badly that the prospect asked us to come back in the afternoon when we were a little clearer on the details (this one is so painful, almost 20 years later I can hardly write about it)

• Taking a team of the CEO, CFO and COO to a meeting on which they had not adequately been briefed, assigned roles and gone through a Murder Board exercise (see below).

Posted by Tom Searcy in RFPs, Sales Skills.

Free eBook: RFPs are no longer a choice; they’re a way of life.

Yesterday we introduced our first free eBook, Landing Big Sales with an RFP, and I can’t say that we could have picked a better time to do so.

I was just talking to a friend yesterday about how RFPs fit into the current business landscape. Our conclusion? And this isn’t rocket science, here: As budgets become tighter, and companies–big and small alike–become more anxious to show increased ROI, RFPs will simply become a necessary evil. Companies are going to want to make sure that they’ve explored all possible avenues before they make any decisions. And what’s the best way to do that? You guessed it…

So while RFPs may have been a mere yes or no decision for you in the past, you’re going to start seeing more and more of them in days to come. There’s no escaping, so my suggestion is this: if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em. In other words, take some time to learn how to master RFPs. We’ve spent years dissecting these things and are now so familiar with them, that we’ve even figured out how to make the topic interesting and funny. Really

And hey, I don’t blame anyone for not wanting to fill out an RFP: they’re time-consuming, vague, and often don’t result in new business. Sometimes you even feel like you’re offering free consulting–and, well, sometimes you are. This eBook will help you determine whether or not you’ve got a shot; whether the RFP makes sense for your company; and if so, how to make sure you stand way above the competition.

Posted by Tom Searcy in RFPs.