The Power of Being There

bizmatchmakerBusiness is: always looking for the next customer or client while keeping the current customers or clients satisfied with their product or service.  It is freely acknowledged that it takes much more effort to meet and create a client than to keep one.  The Ohio Business Matchmaker event for 2015 was created to set up such an environment where commercial and government suppliers are able to get 10 minutes of uninterrupted time with people who want to do business with you.  My recent experiences at the Ohio Business Matchmaker highlight this for myself and for two of my more successful clients.

As a business builder I take my clients to the Matchmaker event in order to work with them to get the most out of their experience.  This year was no exception.  I accompanied Gina Gunderson of Daubenmire’s Printing, LLC, and Allison Chaney of Bare Knuckle Digital and Red212.  Both professionals were able to connect with several buyers and got information from them that otherwise would not be available.

Allison made connections with several area and government agencies that need both traditional marketing and digital media work.  However, because she was actually present and communicating with real people, she also picked up several recommendations from the buyers about other people she should connect with outside of the matchmaker.  The buyers even offered to make email introductions and connections.  None of that would have been possible if Allison had just sent an introductory email to these connections.

Gina was able to connect and reconnect with buyers she had met at a previous Matchmaker.  Since she now owns her own printing business she has been able to become certified as a woman owned business by the Women’s Business Enterprise.  This certification enables her to make connections with government and commercial buyers who also are introducing her to other businesses.  The fact that she was there at the Matchmaker enabled the buyers to connect with her as a real person.

I reconnected with Tom Krusemark, our Procurement Center Representative for the U.S. Small Business Administration for Department of Defense Activities.  Tom services WPAFB, EPA OH, DOE, OH and the VA in Ohio.  He sought me out for a seminar he was giving that highlighted the changes in contracting rules and regulations.  I was very excited to find out that the Mentor/Protégé program that is usually associated with the 8(a) program is being implemented for other small businesses by the SBA.  This program has greatly increased the abilities of small business to become very large corporations.  Tom also spoke of a major change for Woman Owned Small Businesses whereby WOSBs can now be used for sole source contracts.  This changed is currently under review within the new National Defense Authorization Act of 2013.  This is a major change in the rules and regulations and should be welcome by any woman owned business interested in government contracting.

The point is that none of the three of us would have made these connections nor found these business opportunities if we had not made the effort to attend the Matchmaker.  Being there is always the most effective way to differentiate yourself from your competition.

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