Best Practices in Selling to Iowa’s Regent Universities

Exploring Best Practices for Engaging with State/Regent Universities

Being well-prepared and strategic is crucial before approaching a State/Regent University with your products or services. Here are some refined practices to enhance your approach:

  1. In-depth Research: Delve into the university’s strategic goals, active initiatives, and existing contracts. Regularly check their websites for details on current contracts, including terms and upcoming renewal periods, to anticipate future bidding opportunities.
  2. Identify Decision Makers: Depending on the dollar amount, this could include department heads, procurement officers, building managers, or specific project managers. University directories can be a useful resource for identifying key contacts. 
  3. Attend Supplier Orientation: Attend a supplier orientation webinar that provides valuable information on how to navigate university procurement processes and take questions during the webinar. 
  4. Tailor Your Pitch: Craft a compelling pitch or capability statement highlighting how your product or service meets the university’s specific needs and objectives that you can share at a supplier orientation.
  5. Policy & Procedures: Familiarize yourself with university procurement policies and procedures. This includes any bidding processes, contract requirements, or supplier registration systems.
  6. Networking: Cultivate relationships with key decision-makers by attending industry conferences, participating in relevant forums, and engaging with university personnel through training and networking events or LinkedIn.
  7. Provide Value: If allowable, offer demonstrations, trials, or pilot programs to showcase the effectiveness of your product or service.
  8. Follow-Up: After initial contact or meetings, follow up promptly. Be responsive to inquiries and provide any additional information or clarification as needed.
  9. Patience and Persistence: Selling to large universities can take time. Be patient and persistent in your efforts.
  10. Maintain Compliance: Ensure that your business practices and offers comply with any regulatory requirements or ethical standards relevant to selling to a public agency. When responding to bids, follow the instructions ca

Remember, building a successful relationship with universities or any government agency requires more than just making a sale—it’s about understanding their needs, providing value, and establishing trust and credibility as a reliable resource. 

Below are links to each Regent University Supplier/Vendor portal: 

For more information about Government Contracting, contact your CIRAS Government Contracting Specialist or complete our Request for Counseling form.