When we think about markets, we often categorize them into verticals—niche markets where specialized products and services meet the needs of a particular industry and persona. In the commercial world, these verticals range from Manufacturing to Healthcare, Education to Aerospace. But what about the government market? It’s easy to mistakenly view it as just another vertical. However, the truth is far more complex and, for the government marketer, far more interesting.
The Government: A Unique Marketplace
For those new to GovTech, the U.S. Government may appear to be one big, uniform vertical filled with organizations that all do the same thing. But that’s not entirely accurate. Yes, the GovTech market is filled with tens of thousands of organizations. But it’s also a multi-dimensional, vibrant market with diverse needs and almost every commercial vertical. With millions of employees and thousands of different missions, the government market is, in fact, a collection of industries within itself. We call it a vertical of verticals.
The Government’s Diverse Needs
The government has departments focused on Healthcare, Education, Energy, and more. Each has different buyers with their own set of missions, needs and requirements. For example, it’s obvious that the Department of Defense needs the latest in Aerospace technology and Manufacturing technology. But did you know they also have roads, hospitals, stores and schools? This makes them a natural for AEC, Healthcare, Retail and Education solutions. The same is true for the Federal Civilian segment and the State and Local segments. When you start to really dig in, you find out that the government generally needs the same products and services used in the commercial sector – but applied a different way.
A (Very Large) Mirror to the Commercial World
Within the government ecosystem, every commercial vertical has its counterpart. For businesses, particularly technology companies, the government market holds many opportunities. If your company excels in a commercial vertical, there’s a good chance that you can replicate that success in the government space. For tech marketers who want to market their products to the government, the key is understanding these verticals and their needs.
Navigating the Verticals Within
The challenge—and the opportunity—lies in navigating this vertical-of-verticals. It requires a deep understanding of how the government operates, its priorities, and how it procures goods and services. Unlike the commercial sector, where decisions can be swift and based on market trends, the government’s purchasing processes are more structured and policy-driven. These policies tend to be aligned around mission needs, which can be grouped within the verticals and segments. For example, AEC programs within the DoD segment must meet a different set of policies and standards than AEC programs in the State and Local segment.
The Importance of Tailored Strategies
Success in the government market demands a tailored approach. It’s not enough to have a one-size-fits-all strategy. You need to align your business strengths with the government’s specific needs in your vertical and segment. This means customizing your marketing, your sales approach, and your service delivery to meet the government’s unique requirements. And ensuring that your channel ecosystem can do the same.
The Path Forward
The government market offers a broad range of opportunities for businesses ready to adapt their commercial expertise to the public sector’s needs. With the right knowledge and strategy, your business can find new avenues for growth and make a significant impact on a national scale. The journey is complex, but the rewards are substantial for those ready to navigate the vertical of verticals.
Interested in learning more? Reach out to us for a deeper dive into the government market and discover how your business can grow.