ASI Solutions – successfully tendering for growth
An educated approach to government
ASI Solutions is an IT services business, delivering innovative IT solutions throughout Australia. Founded by two teachers, who saw the potential for technology in the classroom, ASI, now run by the next generation of the founding family, still focusses heavily on the Education sector, as well as on other federal and state government departments. They have built a reputation for great service and expertise in technology supply support.
Dealing with government is rewarding, but demanding. Government contracts generate significant revenue but are awarded through a rigorous tendering process that takes time and skill to handle.
Freeing up account managers
ASI have a long history of success with Government, but as they grew, the demands of bidding for everything they wanted to was outstripping the capacity of their client facing teams. “Our business development managers and account managers are at their best when with the client, understanding requirements, developing relationships and managing our ongoing business”, says Justin Lowe, Executive Director at ASI. “Responding to tenders is part of their role, but it requires quite a different skillset. Not to mention the time it takes, time when they are tied to their desks, rather than being with their clients.”
ASI therefore decided that specialist help was needed, and engaged Words2Win to manage a number of their Government tender responses, at State and Federal level.
Win themes – the foundation of a great proposal
For each response, Words2Win firstly engages with ASI’s executive leadership and account team to establish the key win themes. “The win themes are essential”, says Justin, “they summarise the ways in which ASI can meet the client’s requirements, how we differentiate ourselves and what our key messages need to be for that particular opportunity.”
Once the win themes are established, Words2Win manages the process of building the response document, liaising with all parts of the business, from the client facing account team, to the services team, HR, Marketing, Procurement and leadership. “There is no such thing as a ‘standard’ response”, says Justin. “Every RFP is different and although we might re-use some material, it’s really important to answer exactly what that particular client is asking. Words2Win pulls together all the required material and shapes it into a response that clearly answers each question and articulates our value.”
Not just technology – the growth of social procurement
Justin adds “Almost all Government tenders now include not only a requirement for technical and service capability, but they are looking for suppliers who share the public sector’s commitment to social procurement objectives. We’ve responded to tenders that ask about our policies for engaging with aboriginal businesses and social enterprise, our domestic violence policy, our policy to ensure against modern slavery, as well as our environmental and sustainability policies. Words2Win have been extremely valuable in this area too, helping with research and making introductions to appropriate social procurement organisations”.
The proof of any tender is in the result, and ASI’s results since engaging Words2Win have been very positive, with a very high success rate. “Words2Win are totally committed to helping us win, so much so that they put their money where their mouth is and reflect that in their fee structure”, says Justin, “so we feel we are working with a partner who is really committed to helping to grow our business.”Download Case Study
Distributing the message
Sektor – the technology experts
Sektor are an IT distribution company, specialising in providing leading edge technology to the retail, hospitality, health, mobility and security sectors. They represent some of the world’s leading IT vendors, taking their products far and wide into the Australian and New Zealand markets through a highly skilled, expert and experienced team. Their clients are systems integrators, software developers and IT consultancies who put together best of breed solutions for end customers, and who rely on Sektor to bring them the latest and greatest the technology world has to offer.
Sektor’s greatest asset is its people – the ‘Green Team’ are known for their industry and technology expertise and their commitment to getting the right solution for their clients. Sektor positions itself around this expertise and wanted to ensure that its communications consistently enhanced this message.
Cameron Arnold, Director says; “We communicate in two directions – to the vendors whose products we distribute, and to the clients we service – and we need the message to each of these groups to be clear, and focussed to their requirements. We engaged Words2Win because Carol understood our business goals and could help us to deliver our message effectively.”
Cameron, along with Marketing Managers Edyta Esplin in Australia and Linda Tso in NZ, engaged Words2Win to help with web content, brochures, blogs, eDMs and a company presentation. They also used Words2Win when bidding for the distribution rights for a major new vendor.
Winning new business
“The vendor went through a proposal process to select new distributors”, says Cameron. “The detailed responses needed input from a number of different people within our team, and we wanted to ensure that we presented our capabilities fully and consistently. We engaged Words2Win, who helped us build a clear win theme, crafted a strong response, managed the document creation process and helped us develop a client presentation. We won the business and Words2Win’s contribution to that success was significant.”
Presenting Sektor’s value
“Our team often make presentations to vendors or clients about Sektor”, says Cameron, “but whilst they are all good at it, their approaches lacked consistency. Words2Win helped us define our value proposition and differentiators consistently and put them into a presentation format. The message differs in focus for vendors and clients, so we developed two versions of the presentation. It’s helped us explain clearly what we do and what we offer and we know that whoever is presenting, they are going to cover all the key points. We then used the same messages in a company brochure and even in a new on-hold phone message, so we can be sure that our clients hear the same message through every communication channel.”
Sektor’s website is another of those channels where Words2Win helped ensure consistency and clarity. “Our website includes information about all our vendors”, explains Linda, “and we needed to explain the value that each one offers. Carol researched over 100 vendors, got to the heart of what they offer and put together a concise summary of each. It’s given us a consistent format, making it very accessible and easy for our clients to use.”
Marketing campaigns, to promote vendor products to clients are at the heart of Sektor’s marketing activity. “We send out campaigns as eDMs, which link back to landing pages”, explains Edyta. “They are a short communication format and need to engage an audience very quickly. Words2Win manages to find the balance between enough information to catch the reader’s interest, and a short concise format.”
Sharing the expertise
“Blogs are an important way of strengthening our position as experts”, says Edyta, “but our team needs to be with clients, not sitting at their desks writing. So we engage Words2Win to interview them, capture their IP and turn their words into blogs that share their expertise with our audience.”
“By using Words2Win, we’ve been able to help our in-house marketing team to develop content that speaks clearly to our vendors and clients, and continues to position us as experts in our field”, says Cameron. “And that’s a win for everyone.”Download Case Study
Making the case for value
Recipe for Success
IMI are an IT services company who specialise in large-scale end-user device rollouts and support. They help organisations with extended branch networks to deliver IT infrastructure services efficiently and rapidly anywhere in Australia and New Zealand. Their ‘secret sauce’ is an unwavering focus on user experience and on ensuring identical, positive outcomes in every location. This approach has seen them build and retain highly valued client relationships with some of Australia’s highest profile organisations.
IMI is a highly successful business, but Doron Rom, Managing Director, and the leadership team realised that their public persona really wasn’t reflecting the full value of their offerings and their success in the market. “We were doing well as a business”, says Doron, “but we weren’t promoting that success to help win even more clients”.
Sharing the story
Doron approached Words2Win for help in developing targeted and powerful messages that communicated the full IMI story. Words2Win firstly helped Doron, along with Technical Director Todd Hampson to clarify and refine the IMI message, focusing on what really made them different and had driven their success to date.
The next step was to get those messages out to the world through a brand new website – IMI engaged a web designer and Words2Win worked hand in hand with them to develop the written content.
Telling the customer story
One of the things that stood out to Carol Benton of Words2Win as she planned the content was that IMI had some great customer stories, but that they just weren’t being told.
“We’ve worked with Australia’s biggest and best retailers, banks and technology companies”, confirms Doron, “and they are all really happy with what we do for them. So it made sense to ask them for their stories and make them a key focus of the website”.
Carol interviewed seven of IMI’s top clients and captured their stories, which now form the heart of IMI’s website. “There is no better way to explain what we do, and how we help our clients than to tell their stories”, says Doron.
The stories were also designed into a brochure format, and emailed to potential target clients. “I had a very positive response to the brochures, with over 50% of the recipients contacting me back for more information”.
Skilling up the team
With the website and brochures complete, IMI turned its attention to the next part of its communication strategy – ensuring that the IMI message was being told consistently by its staff. “Our team spends a lot of time face to face with clients, and we wanted to make sure they had the skills to be communicating our message clearly”, explains Doron.
IMI engaged Words2Win, who delivered a tailored Business Communication Skills course to 60+ staff in Melbourne and Sydney through a series of half day workshops. These were coordinated by GM National Services, Tony Younes. “The training sessions focused on helping our teams to keep the client uppermost in their mind and gave them practical tips for communicating the IMI message clearly”, said Tony.
Communicating IMI’s value
IMI have been delighted with the new website and brochures and the training their teams received. Doron sums up the benefit of the engagement with Words2Win; “We feel confident that we’re clearly communicating the value we deliver to our clients”.
You can see IMI’s website and read their customer stories at www.imi.solutionsDownload Case Study
Neo engineers a new value message
Self-service by design
Neo are a custom design and technology company specialising self-service kiosks. They help their clients deliver 24/7 customer service, anywhere and everywhere. Neo’s custom designed kiosks are in use throughout Australia, Asia and Europe, for applications as diverse as passport checking, photo processing, ticketing, wayfinding, shopping, gaming, paying bills, carrying out health checks, managing correctional institutions security and HR.
Kiosks can be sited outdoors, put through their paces by inexperienced users, or be literally thousands of miles from the nearest technician – so Neo designs them to be tough, easy to use and easy to service and hangs its hat on having the longest warranty in the industry.
Neo has been successful for many years, but when Managing Director Mike Mitchell took on the leadership in 2015, he wanted to ramp up and deliver greater growth. That meant winning new clients as well as continuing the excellent relationships Neo had cultivated with existing customers.
A focus on value
Mike knew it was important to communicate Neo’s value – to focus on their design and custom-build skills, and how those translated into benefits for users. Neo not only deals direct with clients, but also partners very closely with leading systems integrators who build Neo’s technology into end-to-end solutions, and it was important to ensure the message resonated with them as well.
“As engineers, we were very good at telling the world about our technical skills and production processes”, explains Mike. But we knew that in order to continue to grow the business, we had to be able to communicate our value, in terms our customers and partners would understand.”
The website was the first port of call for the refreshed message and Neo engaged Words2Win to help get the right content onto a newly designed site.
Identifying the message
Carol Benton of Words2Win started by facilitating a workshop to draw out the key messages that Neo wanted to communicate. “The workshop really clarified our value proposition and messaging”, says Mike. “We worked through what we offer, our target audiences and how we benefit them. We solidified our positioning and the strategy behind our communication”
But Neo didn’t want to base the content solely on its own views, and asked Words2Win to design, carry out and report on a survey of some of its key customers and SI partners.
The outcome of the workshop and the customer survey were used to shape the web content.
Neo’s kiosks are used in such a wide range of situations, and perform so well, that the company has a host of great customer stories. These form an important element of the web content. “The best way to explain how we add value is through our customer stories,” says Mike. “Words2Win wrote some new case studies and refreshed our existing ones.”
Sharing useful information was another key strategy behind the content on the site. “Being a technology company, there are a number of things that we take for granted, but which our customers don’t necessarily know”, explains Lindsay Frost, Neo’s Sales Manager. “Carol helped us to identify pieces of our knowledge, like ergonomic and anthropometric design, and the pros and cons of different touch technologies, and put them into explanatory articles. They help us get found in searches and offer real value to site visitors.”
The result has been a clear, consistent and customer focussed message, delivered through a website that is engaging, informative and which is driving business growth for Neo.Download Case Study
Redcat serves up a new value message
The Hospitality System Experts
Redcat provides a complete hospitality IT platform for cafes, restaurants, bars, franchise and multi-site venues. Their locally developed system offers a completely integrated solution, including point of sale, loyalty, kitchen management, stock, payroll accounting and business management. This end-to-end approach, and their in-depth understanding of the hospitality industry has seen them win some the best known names in the Australian food and drink market as customers: Boost Juice, Grill’d, Nandos, Chatime, The Press Club, Maha, Jimmy Grants – from QSRs to top end dining venues.
2017 was a turning point in the business, when the leadership team of Jeff Lamb, Lawrence Pelletier, Frank Tarrantino and Pepe Ochoa led a management buy-out of the business. With the opportunity to take greater control, revisiting their messaging to the market was one of the first items on the agenda.
A great product deserves a great message
“We have a great product, with a wider breadth of functionality than anything else on the market”, says sales and marketing director Lawrence, “but we weren’t necessarily doing the best job of communicating exactly what we do offer and how we can help hospitality businesses”.
Having heard Carol Benton of Words2Win speak at a conference, the Redcat team believed that Words2Win would be able to help.
“The first thing Words2Win did”, said Lawrence, “was run a workshop to help us clarify exactly what our message was – our target clients, our offer, what set us apart, and why we do what we do, the passion behind our business. Having that strategy in place was exactly the right place to start – it meant that everything we did from there referred back to our key messages. It saves reinventing the wheel every time we create a piece of marketing content, and ensures that we are 100% consistent in our communications”.
Getting it out there
The first step in implementing the messages was the website and a set of brochures. Redcat selected a designer, AK-D, and Words2Win worked closely with them and Redcat to develop the content. “Working with Words2Win was easy”, says Lawrence, “Carol very quickly understood what we’re all about and turned that into the words to explain it clearly to our market”.
Since the launch of the website, Redcat has continued to work with Words2Win to add new content: “We’ve got a very happy set of clients”, explains Lawrence, “and we want to showcase them and keep creating new content to keep the website fresh. “Words2Win interviewed key clients and developed case studies that are being added to the site”.
A showcase for value
The result for Redcat is a website that truly showcases the excellence of its offering and a set of brochures that explains each element of the solution and how they all fit together. “Our new website and content is a real asset”, Lawrence sums up. “We have a strong, clear and consistent message that is helping us to grow the business”.Download Case Study
Risesmart – a realigned message for a changing workplace
Risesmart are an outplacement services company, helping organisations and their employees navigate workforce changes. As people move into, within and out of a business, Risesmart helps to ease those transitions with coaching, training and technology.
Risesmart Australia started life as SageCo – founded by Alison Hernandez and Catriona Byrne in 2004 the company took a fresh approach to outplacement services that resonated with the market and saw it grow significantly. In 2017, SageCo became part of the Risesmart group, a global player in the talent mobility market.
As they merged the best of SageCo with the global experience and reach of their new parent, Alison and Catriona wanted to ensure that their message was fully aligned with Risesmart without losing the value that SageCo’s clients had come to value.
One team, one message
They engaged Words2Win to help them. “Carol ran a workshop that helped us to distil and clarify exactly what we want to say to the market’, says Catriona. “We captured what drives us, who we help, what we offer them and the difference it makes. It was a really useful process to go through, and a good structure to get the leadership team together and focussed on our message.”
Once the message strategy was defined, Words2Win compared it to Risesmart’s current communications, including their website, brochures, and proposals. “We identified where the gaps were, and where we need to put our effort to make sure that our message is clearly and consistently communicated”, says Catriona.
One of the key areas identified was harnessing the breadth and depth of knowledge within the Risesmart organisation, so Risesmart worked with Words2Win on thought leadership articles to share the experience and expertise of the team.
“Working with Words2Win has helped us shape our message and communicate it effectively”, sums up Catriona. “We have a lot to say, a lot to share and this process has been invaluable in helping us organise our thinking and turn it into meaningful content that helps to drive our business.”Download Case Study
Let’s create your winning words
From ‘what’ to ‘so what’. If you’re good at describing the ‘what’ of your business, but not so good at the ‘so what’, reach out to us at Words2Win. We’ll help you translate from ‘what we do’ to ‘how we add value’.
Reach out to talk about your business messaging or content writing.
I had the opportunity to present about my business, but was nervous and unsure of how to approach it. Words2Win explained to me that 90% of the success of the presentation was in the work I did beforehand. I couldn’t believe the results - I said everything I needed to say, I generated plenty of interest, and nobody could believe it was my first ever presentation.Ronak Moussavi, Director, Sucker Punch Fitness
As engineers, we were very good at telling the world about our technical skills and production processes. But we knew that in order to continue to grow the business, we had to be able to communicate our value, in terms our customers and partners would understand. Words2Win helped us to identify key pieces of our knowledge and put them into explanatory articles. They help us get found in searches and offer real value to site visitors.Mike Mitchell, Managing Director, CEO, NeoProducts
There is no better way to explain what we do, and how we help our clients than to tell their stories. I had a very positive response to the case studies Words2Win developed, with over 50% of the recipients contacting me back for more information. We feel confident that we’re clearly communicating the value we deliver to our clients.Doron Rom, Managing Director, IMI
Words2Win ran a workshop that helped us to distil and clarify exactly what we want to say to the market. We captured what drives us, who we help, what we offer them and the difference it makes. It was a really useful process to go through, and a good structure to get the leadership team together and focused on our message.Catriona Byrne, Creative Director, Risesmart Australia
Our team spends a lot of time face to face with clients, and we wanted to make sure they had the skills they needed. The Words2Win training sessions focused on helping our teams to keep the client uppermost in their mind and gave them practical tips for communicating the IMI message clearly.Tony Younes, General Manager, National Services, IMI
Our team often make presentations to vendors or clients about Sektor, and whilst they are all good at it, their approaches lacked consistency. Words2Win helped us define our value proposition and differentiators consistently and put them into a presentation format. It’s helped us explain clearly what we do and what we offer and we know that whoever is presenting, they are going to cover all the key points.Cameron Arnold, Director, Sektor
Having a strategy in place meant that everything we did from there referred back to our key messages. It saves reinventing the wheel every time we create a piece of marketing content, and ensures that we are 100% consistent in our communications. We have a strong, clear and consistent message that is helping us to grow the business.Lawrence Pelletier, Sales and Marketing Director, Redcat
Words2Win shapes a response that clearly answers each question and articulates our value. Government tenders now include social procurement objectives – Words2Win has helped us with research and making introductions to appropriate social procurement organisations. They are totally committed to helping us win, and we feel we are working with a partner who is really helping to grow our business.Justin Lowe, Executive Director, ASI
We worked with Words2Win on a refresh of our website. Carol made the whole process easy - helping to draw out the key messages about our value, our clients and our products, writing the content, and managing the design work. We're extremely happy with the outcome - we now have a site that we are keen to point people to and which has generated leads for our business.Scott Munro, FutureNet
I worked with Words2Win on the my ‘Adventure Mum’ website. Carol asked the right questions to draw out experiences and information that I wouldn't have thought of including. She wrote the content in 'my voice', was thoroughly professional and efficient and ensured that the words on my website really conveyed the message that I want to share.
We engaged Words2Win to manage an RFP response for us, and were delighted with Carol’s approach and expertise, which we believe was an important factor in us winning the tender. Carol helped us to articulate our value proposition, our win themes and our story, and was organised, methodical and easy to work with. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend Carol to any company that wants a highly polished proposal.Evan Thomas, Networking Division Manager, Sektor
I had the good fortune to meet Carol Benton recently and engaged her to write a proposal for a business idea that I wanted to present in a very professional manner to a local government organisation. Carol took up the challenge and certainly over delivered on all aspects of the endeavour.Nanette Ferguson - Business Coach, College Coaching
Working with Carol was far too easy. Having a large amount of information to convey seemed difficult for me to narrow down. Carol’s expertise shone through as she moulded and created documents and copy I was humbled to read. Many thanks to you Carol and look forward to working with you more in the future!Simon Clark, The Shift Initiator