Mailing Secrets of the Business to Government

The U.S. government’s fiscal year ended last week. So now’s the time to work on boosting next year’s government sales.

Most business-to-business response lists – including those of conference attendees, catalog buyers, and magazine subscribers — have clusters of government buyers on them, notes Mark Amtower, a Highland, MD-based consultant specializing in helping businesses sell to the government. Even if they’re not promoted as a select, work with your broker or the list owner to find out how many government names are on the b-to-b files you currently use.

Don’t neglect subscriber files of publications that target niches within the huge government market. “American City and County” (which like CATALOG AGE is published by Primedia Business Magazines and Media) targets municipal and other local government public works employees. “Federal Computer Week,” “Government Computer News,” and “Government Technology” target the lucrative government information technology audience. If you need to reach managers and executives, both “Governing” and “Government Executive” are strong publications, Amtower adds.

When mailing to these buyers, be sure to send them a version of your catalog that has the logo of SmartPay, the government-issued credit card, on the cover. Amtower also notes that catalogs in envelopes have a higher response rate among government buyers than those mailed without an envelope, perhaps because they are more likely to get by the mailroom gatekeepers than mailpieces that are more obviously catalogs.

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