SCORE

Are you considering selling your products or services to the federal government or a big corporation? Becoming a contractor can be rewarding, not to mention providing regular and lucrative business. But there are plenty of challenges, too.

For a small business owner—even an experienced one—making your way through the acronyms and requirements of marketing to Uncle Sam can be an intimidating journey. Finding the right person to pitch your wares at a huge corporation isn’t much easier.

Fortunately, there is a way you can simplify the whole process: attend a Business Matchmaking event.

What Is Business Matchmaking?

Business Matchmaking is a nonprofit group that helps entrepreneurs improve their skills in seeking contracts and meet potential government and corporate clients at events nationwide. Entrepreneurs get a chance to learn the basics of pitching to government and corporate clients, then have the opportunity to meet one-on-one with representatives from government agencies and big corporations for about 20 minutes.

The organization holds regional face-to-face selling events, seminars and workshops, and it provides online training and collateral material for small business owners—primarily minority, woman, veteran and disabled veteran-owned firms. All events are free to both participating small businesses and government or corporate buyers.

Last year was a good one for contractors, Business Matchmaking reports. In 2018, a greater number of federal, state and local agencies provided opportunities and contracts to entrepreneurs—and Business Matchmaking helped small business owners sell more than $1 billion worth of products and services to government and corporate clients.

What’s New for Business Matchmaking

Focus on Veterans

Since its beginning, Business Matchmaking has focused on veterans, and the organization is currently expanding its services for veteran business owners and military veterans who want to start businesses. Much of this focus is in California, due to the tremendous influx of veterans there.

In 2019, Business Matchmaking will hold events in Los Angeles, San Diego, Santa Barbara, San Francisco, Bakersfield and elsewhere in California. Coming up on April 18, 2019, is the organization’s biggest event, its annual Government Procurement Conference in
Washington, DC, which is the nation’s largest official U.S. Government small matchmaking event.

Special Savings

Business Matchmaking offers a Perks Marketplace where small business owners can enjoy discounts of up to 80% on products and services ranging from office supplies and software to rental cars, hotel stays and even health and business insurance.

A public-private partnership, Business Matchmaking is supported by some of America’s biggest corporations, including Union Bank, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, UPS and Office Depot.

Meet and Greet

What’s great about Business Matchmaking events is they give you a chance to meet face to face with companies and agencies that are actually seeking entrepreneurs like you. There’s also the chance to connect with other small businesses. And who knows? You could find the perfect partner to help you land that contract.

Find out more at Business Matchmaking’s site. Need help determining if contracting is for you? Contact your SCORE Mentor for advice, online or in person 24/7.

About the Author(s)

Rieva Lesonsky

Rieva is CEO of GrowBiz Media, a content and consulting company specializing in covering small businesses and entrepreneurship and SmallBizDaily.com.

CEO, GrowBiz Media

Key Topics

business discussion and networking