In a perfect, utopian world, MSPs would find an abundance of sale prospects with well-organized IT infrastructures just waiting for competent professionals to maintain them.
Unfortunately, this isn’t the reality.
For starters, it’s unlikely that companies with systems that work reliably and consistently will have any desire to move away from their existing support providers.
This is why your MSP sales strategy needs to consider exactly how to target prospects “with pain.”
Part of targeting prospects with pain is accepting that many of your strongest prospects will be businesses whose IT infrastructures are in a serious state of disarray. For this reason, it’s essential to make peace with the fact that the early stages of working with these customers may be complicated and stressful.
There is a bright side to this. If you are the company that unravels a messy IT system and transforms it into something fast and reliable, you will be the provider that your client sticks with for the long term.
Your existing clients will often be the people who put you in touch with these prospects.
Company directors with IT problems will often ask their business contacts for recommended providers, so make sure that part of your MSP sales strategy is to ensure that your existing clients know that your are on the lookout for new customers. You may even consider running a referral scheme, offering a discount incentive for those that refer you to new clients.
With the knowledge that customers who are happy with their IT are unlikely to be looking for a new support provider, you can tailor your marketing materials and sales methods in a more effective way.
Think about the common complaints businesses have about their IT providers and address these issues. Emphasize how easy your company is to contact and gather testimonials from as many clients as possible to prove you are capable of transforming a company’s IT provision.
Make sure that your sales meetings and phone calls provide potential customers with plenty of opportunities to share the issues they are experiencing. Concentrate as much on service levels and provider reliability as on technical issues.
Often, a comprehensive list of issues from a new client can be simple to solve with concentration and tenacity – it may simply be the case that their existing provider is overworked or just poor at their job! Situations like this can be quick wins and the start of great client relationships.
As taking over problematic systems can be stressful, ensure you build up a comprehensive set of recovery tools to make it easier to rescue problem systems and become highly proficient in the use of these tools.
Being the provider that knows exactly how to recover a dead Exchange server or quickly migrate a failing server to new hardware can separate you from the competition. A mention of these skills in your marketing materials can be a great MSP sales tool.
Prospects with pain may not be the easiest customers to work with in the early days, but they can be some of the easiest to sign up.
Address their problems quickly and efficiently and they won’t wish to let you go.