It is important to engage with your customers early in the sales cycle; I came across the post below by Rachael Evans & Alexandra Kent of Stack, a consultancy, that expresses why with real eloquence.
If you need to take your arguments to colleagues who struggle to see the point clearly, then perhaps this will help.
#1 Create more value by knowing your clients’ high-level goals
B2B buyers value partners who can create opportunities or solve problems that help them achieve their high-level goals. Knowing what these goals are – above and beyond what is stated in a client brief – and demonstrating how you are able to help achieve these goals better, faster, or at less risk and cost than the competition, creates a valuable and differentiated proposition that clients will pay for.
#2 Reduce competitive intensity by getting ahead of the RFI
The best way to reduce competitive intensity is to not wait for an RFI, but to create new opportunities that you are best placed to win – eliminating rivals and price competition.