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Diversity SMB Seller? Business Networks Can Help the Right Buyers Find You

Are you part of a small or mid-size company (SMB) with diversity status, such as a woman-owned or minority-owned type of business? As you know, many companies have corporate and government-mandated requirements to procure goods and services from a certain percentage of SMB and diversity firms. The challenge for you, of course, is locating opportunities reserved for diversity businesses – especially if you serve a niche market. How can you be “found” at the right time – when buyers are looking for the exact goods and services you offer?

You could cast a very wide marketing outreach effort by buying lists, sending direct mail, attending trade shows, making calls, and following up on leads. But if your business has a small marketing department and budget, this is mostly out of the question. So to drive sales, you need to work smarter and more efficiently.

Business networks with services like Ariba Discovery can help. Consider the recent experience of Blue Marble Media – a woman-owned, full-service film, video, and motion graphics agency that specializes in B2B communications. With only one person handling marketing, they couldn’t afford to invest heavily in generation activities to drive growth. And they were having a hard time locating opportunities reserved for women-owned businesses. By joining a business network, however, they were able to gain significant visibility with middle and upper management-level executives at the
right companies.

Business network matching services automate the process of finding those “needle-in-the-haystack” opportunities by matching diversity SMBs with buyers seeking diversity suppliers. In the case of Blue Marble Media, they received 40 quality leads in the first six months, started building new relationships with nine large buying organizations, and quickly secured a $35,000 contract with a large bank. And they are currently in contract negotiations with a large buyer in need of a woman-owned supplier. They achieved all this with a one-person marketing department – and simultaneously saved over 80 hours of work in research alone.

About the author
Jeanne Trinh
Jeanne Trinh

Jeanne Trinh is Senior Manager of Seller Marketing and Communications, focusing her efforts on helping sellers gain more exposure and raise higher visibility on the Ariba Network. Huge on seller advocacy, she develops a variety of marketing assets... Read More >>>

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