In Times Like These, The Government Should Be Your Customer


To say that these are challenging times would be something of an understatement. We’ve never seen such turbulence in the economy before. 


Economists are still divided on which way the economy is going to go. Some see a quick recovery already underway and predict that, by Christmas, the world will be back on its feet. Others think we’re in for a new Great Depression. If jobs and demand don’t recover, the recession could intensify.


Therefore, many companies and individuals are looking to the government, not for leadership but for business opportunities. During the economic crisis, the authorities take up the slack in demand, pumping billions into the circular flow of income to get things moving again. Whether you believe in Keynesian economics or not, there’s no doubt that the government always has money. 


Getting A Government Contract


Gaining a government contract is an essential part of your post-coronavirus business plan. You want to have at least some money coming from public sources, diversifying your income stream, just in case private customers can’t afford to support your business. 


But how do you do this? 


Happily, there are plenty of resources out there to help you. The Step-By-Step Guide to a General Services Administration GSA Federal Contract Award by Deborah Elias, for example, provides information on how to win business with federal agencies quickly. Often, you don’t have to spend any additional money on marketing at all. 


Getting a government contract also relies on forming relationships with members of various departments. If you know somebody, you immediately put yourself at a considerable advantage. People trust pre-existing relationships much more than they do new ones, immediately putting you in pole position to get the contract you want. 


Do what you can to form relationships with government departments from the start. Don’t immediately go for the sale (unless there’s a compelling reason to do so). Instead, find ways to get your foot in the door. Things like providing training days can really help sell your brand (and you personally) and create that all-important familiarity with your customers. 


Also, note that government agencies love certifications. The more letters you have after your name, the better. Remember, people in the public sector strongly believe that training is a direct measure of competence. So if you have professional qualifications or anything like that, it can be a massive advantage. Often departments will award contracts to people solely on the basis of their education. 


Finally, make sure that you’re insured. To get a government contract, you’ll need to prove that you have adequate cover and that you’re ready to go as a commercial operation. Without insurance, the bureaucracy will reject your application. 


Wrapping Up


Getting a government contract takes quite a bit of work up front, but it pays off massively long-term. You can charge high fees, plus get deals that run on for years and years. Because governments aren’t for-profit, there are very few incentives for them to switch suppliers, once they settle on one that meets their basic needs.