Do you want to streamline your RFP response process and win more contracts? Imagine a more efficient and effective way to handle RFPs, ensuring your responses stand out. We’ll be sharing a solution to help you achieve that result.

Uncover the unexpected way AI can help you win more RFPs with a powerful tool. It’s not just about streamlining responses; it’s about gaining a competitive edge and uncovering hidden insights. Find out the surprising truth that’s transforming the RFP game and putting you ahead of the pack. Ready to discover the game-changing tool that’s making waves in the industry? Stay tuned for this groundbreaking reveal.

Subscribe to Modern Selling on the app of your choice!

Mark Shriner, a seasoned business development and growth specialist, shares his journey from an adventurous trip to Asia with only $117 in his pocket to leading a consulting company in Japan. Through a chance encounter, he found himself in the sales track after securing a job with a Taiwanese computer magazine publisher, which fueled his career in sales. Mark’s experience in business expansion and his tenure with Memoq, a software provider, led him to co-found Memoq RFP, a company focused on streamlining RFP responses for small and medium-sized businesses. His story of resilience and adaptability serves as an inspiration, demonstrating the unexpected paths that can lead to success. Mark’s unique journey showcases the unpredictable nature of life and how seizing opportunities, even with limited resources, can lead to remarkable achievements.

In this episode of The Modern Selling Podcast, Mario Martinez Jr. interviews Mark Shriner, the CEO and co-founder of Breeze Docs and Memoq RFP, diving into the challenges of responding to RFPs, RFIs, and RFQs. Mark shares his personal journey, including an adventurous stint in Asia with minimal funds, which eventually led him to a career in sales.

The episode sheds light on the complexities of document requests in the sales process, emphasizing the significance of strategic decision-making, collaboration with subject matter experts, and the impact of AI tools in streamlining the response process. Mark’s insights into the frustrations faced by subject matter experts and the potential for AI tools to alleviate these challenges offer practical takeaways for sales professionals. His emphasis on the importance of relationship-building and the value of informed competitive positioning in responding to RFPs and RFQs make this episode a must-listen for those seeking to enhance their approach to document requests. Mark’s personal anecdotes and experiences add depth to the conversation, making it relatable and insightful for sales professionals navigating the complexities of RFPs and RFQs.

You found a problem and then figured out a solution, and people buy that. You go in and help them fix something that’s broken. – Mark Shriner

This week’s special guest is Mark Shriner

Mark Shriner, hailing from Seattle, is the CEO and co-founder of Memoq RfP. With a career spanning over 20 years in leadership positions, including country manager, regional sales manager, and CEO in Asia Pacific, Mark has garnered extensive expertise in business development and growth. His involvement in assisting companies with market expansion led to his foray into RFP technology, driven by the need for enhanced response processes for small and medium-sized businesses. Mark’s profound industry experience equips him to provide valuable insights into the integration of AI to streamline RFP responses, making him a knowledgeable and credible guest for the audience to glean insights from.

In this Episode, You will Learn How to:

  • Master Winning Strategies: Learn how to craft winning strategies for RFPs and RFQs to stand out from the competition and win more business.
  • Boost Sales Efficiency: Discover how to streamline and improve sales with optimized RFP response processes for greater success and faster turnaround times.
  • Harness AI for Optimization: Explore the power of leveraging AI in RFP response optimization to enhance efficiency and accuracy in the sales process.
  • Nurture Effective Relationships: Unlock the secrets to building effective sales relationships pre-RFP to foster trust and increase win rates.
  • Reach Small Business RFP Success: Uncover essential tips tailored for small businesses to achieve RFP success and compete effectively in the marketplace.

The Key Moments in this Episode are:

00:00:08 – Introducing FlyMSG

00:01:11 – Mark Shriner’s Background

00:04:38 – RFP Challenges for Small and Medium-Sized Businesses

00:06:28 – Mario’s Experience with RFPs

00:11:37 – Mark’s Journey to Asia

00:12:55 – Understanding RFPs and Document Requests

00:15:31 – Challenges in Responding to Document Requests

00:18:11 – Communicating During RFPs

00:19:42 – Helping Create RFPs

00:24:39 – Process Tweaks for RFP Response

00:25:48 – Go/No-Go Decision-making Process

00:26:44 – Subject Matter Expert Collaboration

00:29:24 – AI Tools for Efficiency

00:36:28 – Relationship-building in RFPs

00:39:01 – Strategic Pricing in RFPs

00:39:18 – Understanding Key Requirements in RFPs

00:41:50 – Asking Critical Questions

00:44:06 – Reconsideration and Reevaluation

00:47:23 – Finding Solutions to Problems

00:49:45 – Competitive Intelligence in RFPs

00:51:53 – Connecting with Mark Shriner

00:52:28 – Grow Fast Podcast

00:52:44 – Favorite Movies

00:54:28 – Wrapping Up

Timestamped summary of this episode:

00:00:08 – Introducing FlyMSG
Mario Martinez Jr. introduces FlyMSG.IO, a free personal writing assistant and text expander application, and sets the stage for the podcast’s focus on sales growth techniques.

00:01:11 – Mark Shriner’s Background
Mark Shriner shares his background and experience in business development and growth, including his time living and working in Asia, which ultimately led him to start his career in sales.

00:04:38 – RFP Challenges for Small and Medium-Sized Businesses
Mark discusses the challenges small and medium-sized businesses face in responding to RFPs, highlighting the resource limitations and opportunity costs involved in the decision-making process.

00:06:28 – Mario’s Experience with RFPs
Mario Martinez Jr. shares his past experience with RFPs and the challenges he faced, emphasizing the importance of relationship building in winning RFPs and RFQs, despite his dislike for the process.

00:11:37 – Mark’s Journey to Asia
Mark Shriner shares a personal story of his spontaneous trip to Asia with minimal resources, leading to a four-year adventure that ultimately shaped his career in business and sales.

00:12:55 – Understanding RFPs and Document Requests
Mark explains the differences between RFI, RFQ, and RFP and the challenges organizations face when responding to these document requests. He highlights the time-consuming nature of the process and the need for involvement from various subject matter experts.

00:15:31 – Challenges in Responding to Document Requests
Mark discusses the challenges organizations face in deciding whether to respond to an RFP, including understanding and meeting the requirements, as well as the repetitive nature of the work. He emphasizes the importance of developing a relationship with the customer during the process.

00:18:11 – Communicating During RFPs
Mark and Mario explore the issue of communication during RFPs, particularly when organizations are instructed not to communicate with anyone other than procurement. They share insights on how sales organizations can navigate this challenge and potentially leverage existing relationships.

00:19:42 – Helping Create RFPs
Mark highlights the strategic advantage of helping organizations create their RFPs, as it allows vendors to influence the content and requirements in their favor. He also discusses the importance of understanding the customer’s real intentions behind issuing an RFP.

00:24:39 – Process Tweaks for RFP Response
Mark emphasizes the need for small and medium-sized businesses to establish a clear process for making go/no-go decisions when responding to RFPs. He underscores the importance of setting criteria and following a structured approach to managing the RFP response process.

00:25:48 – Go/No-Go Decision-making Process
Mark discusses the importance of making a go/no-go decision based on key factors and requirements, potential workarounds, and customer acceptance of workarounds.

00:26:44 – Subject Matter Expert Collaboration
Mark emphasizes the need for a pool of subject matter experts and a collaborative platform for efficient RFP response. He highlights the frustration of repeating tasks and the importance of setting clear expectations to gain SME support.

00:29:24 – AI Tools for Efficiency
Mark discusses the use of AI tools like Breeze for storing and accessing previously used responses, searching through reference documents, and even drafting responses. He emphasizes the efficiency and effectiveness of these tools in RFP response.

00:36:28 – Relationship-building in RFPs
Mario shares his experience with maintaining relationships and winning RFPs. He mentions the significance of building relationships early and leveraging past collaborations to secure contracts, even after losing an initial RFP.

00:39:01 – Strategic Pricing in RFPs
Mario describes a strategic approach to pricing in RFPs, highlighting the importance of understanding the true cost and value of services instead of solely meeting price reduction demands. He shares a successful example of re-evaluating pricing to secure a lucrative contract.

00:39:18 – Understanding Key Requirements in RFPs
Mark discusses the importance of understanding key requirements in RFPs and how failure to meet those requirements can result in losing the deal.

00:41:50 – Asking Critical Questions
Mark shares how he asked critical questions to the CIO, leading to a realization that the competition had not considered key integration and cost factors.

00:44:06 – Reconsideration and Reevaluation
The CPO admits they did not consider the integration factor, leading to a reevaluation of the RFP and potential reconsideration of the decision.

00:47:23 – Finding Solutions to Problems
Mark discusses identifying a problem with manual wireless orders and finding a solution through an integration with Ariba, resulting in a significant contract and business growth.

00:49:45 – Competitive Intelligence in RFPs
Lisa Reheark’s advice on understanding competition’s pricing and obtaining competitive intelligence through FOIA requests, highlighting the importance of understanding competition in RFP responses.

00:51:53 – Connecting with Mark Shriner
Mario asks Mark how to get in touch with him to discuss Breeze’s technology and Mark suggests reaching out to him on LinkedIn or Twitter to schedule a demo or meeting.

00:52:28 – Grow Fast Podcast
Mark recommends listening to the Grow Fast Podcast to hear from industry experts like Mario and gain valuable knowledge and wisdom.

00:52:44 – Favorite Movies
Mark shares that his favorite movies are the Godfather I and II, and Lord of the Rings trilogy, while Mario reveals that his favorite movie is The Goonies due to its themes of aspiration and problem-solving.

00:54:28 – Wrapping Up
Mario and Mark continue to discuss their favorite movies and wrap up the conversation by encouraging listeners to rate and review the Modern Selling Podcast and to download FlyMSG for increased productivity.

Watch the Video version for this Podcast Episode:

Mastering Winning Strategies

Mark Shriner shares valuable insights on mastering winning strategies when responding to RFPs, RFIs, and RFQs, emphasizing the importance of understanding competition pricing and tailoring responses effectively. His personal anecdotes highlight the significance of problem-solving approaches and aligning offerings to meet clients’ specific needs, contributing to successful responses.

Boosting Sales Efficiency

Shriner discusses how embracing AI technology, like Breeze, can boost sales efficiency by streamlining the RFP response process. By harnessing AI tools for knowledge retrieval, response drafting, and collaboration, sales professionals can optimize their responses to document requests and enhance their chances of success in competitive bidding scenarios.

Harnessing AI for Optimization

The conversation between Mario and Shriner reveals the transformative power of harnessing AI for optimization in the sales process. By leveraging AI tools like Breeze to simplify RFP responses, sales professionals can enhance their efficiency, decision-making, and competitiveness in the market. This strategic approach enables businesses to stay ahead of the curve and drive success in their sales endeavors.

The resources mentioned in this episode are:

  • Connect with Mark Shriner on LinkedIn to learn more about Breeze Docs AI and how it can help streamline the RFP process.
  • Check out the Grow Fast Podcast to gain insights from sales and marketing experts, including tips on winning more RFPs.
  • Download FlyMSG for free to save 20 hours or more in a month and increase your productivity with a text expander and personal writing assistant.
  • Consider reaching out to Lisa Rehark at RFP Success Company for expert guidance on winning more RFPs and RFQs.
  • Watch The Godfather and The Godfather Part II for a classic movie experience, or indulge in the Lord of the Rings trilogy for an epic adventure.

Table of Contents
Add FlyMSG to Chrome. It's Free!