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Marketing Strategies

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This page provides resources to help market your business to the Commonwealth’s buyers. The information includes a list of eligible entities that may purchase goods and services from Statewide Contracts, databases that provide contact information for potential clients, and programs that help gain visibility for your company. This page also provides information to help you learn about your competition on the Statewide Contract.
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COMMBUYS

COMMBUYS enables buyers and Statewide Contractors to manage all aspects of the procurement process from a single, online platform. Bid posting, bid submission, and award, as well as purchase order activity and vendor email notifications, are managed online in COMMBUYS. Statewide Contractors can find many useful documents relating to their awarded contracts by searching for their contract number (example: OFF38) and opening the “Master Blanket Purchase Order (MBPO)”. There you’ll find attachments that relate to the contract, from vendor lists to price sheets and contract details, OSD tries to include all pertinent information to assist the buyer in obtaining the contracted goods/services. Other examples of attachments or important information are listed below.

User Guide
This document explains how buyers should use the contract, and provides valuable contract related information to help the buyer understand and navigate the contract. Statewide Contractors will also find it useful to review the Contract User Guide to understand buyer expectations.

Vendors Tab
For many (but not all) Statewide Contract MBPOs, you will find attachments to each Vendor’s record that provide detailed pricing and services information, and sometimes includes extracts from the Vendor’s bid. Statewide Contractors may find it helpful to see what other Statewide Contractors are offering for similar goods and services on the Contract.

Request for Quotes (RFQs) on COMMBUYS
A Request for Quote (RFQ) is a term used by many buyers to describe a solicitation that is open only to Statewide Contractors on one or more Statewide Contracts. The Contract User Guide will tell you when and if an RFQ is required by the Statewide Contract. However, for transparency purposes, some buyers post RFQs on COMMBUYS even when it is not otherwise required, particularly if the estimated value is significant. It is always beneficial for Statewide Contractors to monitor their COMMBUYS registered email to stay alert to new Requests for Quotes.

Who Can Buy From Statewide Contracts

Once a Statewide Contractor has received a fully executed copy of their Statewide Contract, the potential market for their commodities and services is extensive. All Executive Departments are required to use Statewide Contracts for their purchases if the goods or services they seek are available on a Statewide Contract. In addition, many other public and quasi-public entities in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts are eligible, though not required, to use Statewide Contracts. 1.5 billion dollars are spent through Statewide Contracts by both executive and non-executive buyers throughout Massachusetts.

The following information is provided as a resource for statewide contractors to be able to identify and to reach out to potential customers.

State Government: Here is an alphabetical list of all Massachusetts agencies. All of these agencies may use SWCs, but only Executive Departments are required to use them if the goods/services they seek are available on a SWC. To see just the Executive Departments, view the websites for each of the Executive Offices listed here to see which Executive Departments are located within each Executive Office.

City and Town Local Official Directory: The Division of Local Services online directory provides addresses and contact information for officials in Massachusetts' 351 cities and towns. It is not necessary to log in to view the information. Officials listed vary from one municipality to another, but may include the city clerk, data processing, accounting and budget staff, as well as a variety of other roles.

Detailed Information on Elementary and Secondary Schools: The Department of Education's website provides detailed information on public elementary and secondary schools, including address and contact information. It is maintained by the Department of Education.

Massachusetts State Colleges and Universities: This web page, maintained by the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education, contains links to all public higher education campuses in the Commonwealth.

Non-Profit Purchasing Programs: This web page contains a list of human and social service contractors eligible to buy goods and services from the Statewide Contracts.  A second list of additional approved non-profit organizations is also included.   

Local Housing Authority Listing: This website, maintained by Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) provides a list of over 200 local Housing Authorities from across the Commonwealth.

Marketing and Communication Guidelines for Statewide Contractors

The following guidelines apply to all cases where your company in its capacity as a Statewide Contractor interacts with Contract Eligible Entities, whether by actively contacting Eligible Entities or by releasing information related to the contract through print materials, website, email, or other means that may be accessed by Eligible Entities.

  1. Identifying your company as a contractor. Marketing materials and communications issued by statewide contractors should identify your company as a “Massachusetts Statewide Contractor” or “Massachusetts Statewide Contract Holder.” Contractors should not use phrases such as “preferred vendor,” “state-approved vendor,” “vendor on the state list” or “vendor of choice” (or combinations thereof) in conjunction with the Statewide Contract, as such phrases are misleading.
  2. Use of the state seal.  By law, Contractors are prohibited from using the image of the state seal on their marketing materials and communications.
  3. Use of the COMMBUYS and Statewide Contract logos. Contractors who have a signed Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) related to OSD Logos for Statewide Contractors may use the logo files provided by OSD for print and online marketing of the Contractors’ goods and services available on Statewide Contract, so long as such usage complies with the terms and conditions outlined in the MOU.
  4. Contract product identification. All Contractor staff involved in work on the Statewide Contract must be aware of the contract scope and its limitations. Staff members must be able to clearly identify products covered (and not covered) by their contract award. All marketing materials and communications, including quotes, containing both contract and non-contract products must clearly identify products that are covered by the contract as such. For catalogs, price lists, and similar materials, which include contract and non-contract products, Contractors may attach a separate document.
  5. Review of marketing materials. As required by the Request for Response, Contractors must submit all marketing materials specifically dedicated to the Statewide Contract for approval by OSD Contract Manager and OSD Marketing and Communications.
  6. Revisions.  The Operational Services Division reserves the right to revise these guidelines throughout the life of the contract.  Contractors will be allowed at least 30 calendar days to comply with any such changes.

Contact

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Address

One Ashburton Place, Room 1017
Boston, MA 02108-1552
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