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11 Tips for Challenging Government-Marketing Myths and Reaching Buyers

by Becky Sheetz-Runkle  |  
October 20, 2009

Regardless of which party is in the White House or controls Congress, companies are chasing what some perceive as limitless federal dollars.

New players enter the space every day, a trend that's only rising in the recession. But for the "beltway bandits" in the Washington, DC region and those throughout the country and beyond, there are many misconceptions in how to market to that enormous vertical.

Just as selling to government is different from selling to any other industry, marketing to government requires a distinct approach. Although there is no shortage of ways to reach government buyers, some ways are better than others.

To help shatter myths and guide you to a sound strategy, compiled below are some of the best-practices, advice, and recommendations we give to our business-to-government (B2G) clients.

1. Corporate Worldview—Expense or Investment?

For many companies that sell largely to the feds, marketing is seen purely as an expense: A necessary evil with the bare minimum dedicated to people and resources. Is it any wonder the return is consistent with the investment?

Reality: If marketing is viewed solely as an expense, then $1 is too much to spend.

Marketing needs to be tied to generating sales, filling the pipeline, and moving prospects to close. It needs to be an engine that is tightly integrated into your organization's strategic objectives.

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Becky Sheetz-Runkle is a business-to-government marketing expert at Q2 Marketing ( in Fairfax, Va., and the Tech Marketing Examiner on

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