Please Stop Using the Word “BID”
Bid. I hear this word all the time. You know, as in: "We are bidding on this;" "Our bid looks good;" and "They are letting us bid on this." Yes, I know what the word means, and how it is defined in the dictionary. I am not saying you are grammatically incorrect in using it. However, every time I hear it, I cringe.
For me, the word "bid" conjures up images of eBay, an online auction. You can place your bid on eBay, right? Low price wins. Great. But that does not work for any organization selling unique products and services. I tell my clients that they should never be bidding on a prospect's or customer's work/projects. Instead, they should be bringing creative ideas and value to the table beyond their bid.
You see, our word choice plays a large role in how others define us and also in how we define ourselves. In my opinion, you are short changing yourself by saying you will "bid" on something. There is another way to accomplish the same thing without compromising value. Try saying: "We will put a custom quote together for you"; "We will run some numbers on this"; "We will look at this to put together some pricing options for you"; or "We will take a look at this project and see if we can make this a fit." It makes a difference.
Again, everything in sales is about perception versus reality. What others perceive versus the reality of what is being shared. If the buyer sees no more value from you beyond price, then I hope you can sell it low—as low as you can go. In contrast, if the buyer views you as a solutions-oriented partner, they will fight for you, give you feedback and likely pay more for what you offer. Why? The way you present your brand, differentiate yourself and value you provide.
Whether you agree or disagree with me, I challenge you to do this: Refrain from saying the word "bid"—internally or externally—for one week. Instead, use other words or phrases as a substitute for this. It will be harder than you think, but if you succeed, you will take a key first step toward conveying value in all that you say and do. Until then, I "BID" you good luck.
Ryan T. Sauers has spent 25 years leading and/or consulting with printing, graphics, promotional and visual communications related organizations. Ryan is President of the independent consulting firm, Sauers Consulting Strategies, founded in 2010.
Key areas of focus of the firm include: sales training, marketing strategy, personal branding, leadership development and organizational change.
Sauers is a frequent national speaker and columnist. He has been recognized as one of the top 80 CMOs in the world and achieved the top designation of Certified Marketing Executive through Sales and Marketing Executives International.
Sauers is an adjunct university professor teaching leadership and communication courses to current and aspiring leaders. He is a Certified Myers Briggs, DiSC and Emotional Intelligence Practitioner (one of few in US to achieve all 3 rigorous certifications related to human communications, personality & behavior).
Sauers is working on his Doctoral degree in Organizational Leadership and hosts a radio show in Atlanta (Marketing Matters). He is author of the best-selling books Everyone is in Sales and Would You Buy from You? More info at: RyanSauers.com