You never know what you may find when you look at someone’s purchase history. Thanks to GovSpend, an app that lets you see what government agencies are buying, we’ve recognized that a new trend has started in different counties across the nation. More counties are purchasing bulletproof vests. This wouldn’t be unusual but what’s odd is that they’re not for the police force, they’re for the EMT/EMS responders. Yup, the medical responders who are showing up with the sole purpose of saving your life, are now wearing bulletproof vests.
Why do EMTs need bulletproof vests? In theory, they are responding to a call for help regarding a medical emergency of some kind. However, In the last few years, EMTs have found themselves in situations that have put them at risk. Some of these calls are for assaults, overdoses, & attempted suicides, which can lead to a dangerous situation.
Despite the rise in risk, these men and women still put themselves in harm’s way without giving it another thought. So, in an effort to protect these heroes, their counties and supervisors have started reaching out to vendors to acquire the appropriate protective gear to prepare them for whatever they may find at a scene.
I discovered this trend while searching through the GovSpend database of purchase orders. The spike began in January of 2016 and has continued to climb since then. This is the beginning of an opportunity for vendors aware of this information. With this lead vendors’ of bulletproof vests can approach the purchasing managers in different counties and make a pitch for their vests.
Looking at the purchase orders vendors can see who ordered vests and who hasn’t. They know not to try to sell to the counties that have just made a purchase, but instead can target the neighboring counties who haven’t. They can also use the information they know about the market and the individual agencies to tailor their sales pitch, turning a cold call into a warm lead.
Businesses that have this information understand what it means to have this advantage over their competitors. They don’t have to wait for a Request for Proposal before they can try to make a sale. They can beat those other companies to the punch so that an agency doesn’t have to submit an RFP or search around for quotes. If an RFP is still published the vendor already knows what the agency wants and has a leg up on the competition.
Many businesses trying to win contracts rely solely on the bid and RFP process. But by having access to GovSpend’s bids and historical data, businesses can be aware of new trends before the rest of their industry, enabling them to sell proactively.