Growth Tips: Influencing RFP outcomes

Andrew Shedden   

Business Operations Industry Manufacturing Growth Tips manufacturing marketing Shedden

Speed up the decision process and improve your odds.

A request for proposal (RFP) is just that – a request. It’s not a command and you don’t have to participate. The problem with RFPs is they commoditize both the solutions and the participants. It’s a race to the bottom with the vendor who offers the lowest price the so-called “winner.”

It’s better to avoid RFPs if you can and find less price-driven markets in which to sell. Unfortunately, in some industries there may be no choice but to participate. So what can you do to positively influence the outcome?

Reach out to target markets long before an RFP even crosses your desk and seek permission to get key buyers on your e-mail list. Offer them an e-mail course, a video course, or a series of tip sheets that will help them solve a major problem common to their industries. Even better, solve a problem specific to them. This positions your company as a thought leader before the RFP process starts.

Many of your competitors will just e-mail a proposal. Differentiate your company by attempting to meet with the buyers to discuss the RFP. At the conclusion of the meeting leave the buyers with a package that will help them evaluate options (your competitors) in an unbiased way.


If you can’t meet them then e-mail or mail the same package. This will speed up the decision process and improve your odds during the RFP process.

Contact Andrew Shedden at (705) 876-0634 or visit


Stories continue below

Print this page

Related Stories