How One VAR Acquired 4 New Managed Services Contracts In Less Than 3 Weeks, With 6 More Lined Up To Buy!
By Robin Robins, President, Technology Marketing Toolkit, Inc.
With managed services all the rage, many of my clients want me to provide them with campaigns and strategies for selling these services. To that end, I recently received the following e-mail from a client using my marketing strategies that demonstrates how he secured 4 new managed services contracts in less than 3 weeks time, with 6 more lined up to buy. First, read his story, and then read on to see my comments on how to make this happen for you…
“I am writing this letter to let you know that your Technology Marketing Tool Kit has been a great investment! It has helped us gain more face time with potential clients than ever before. We have been using the direct mail letters you gave us for three weeks, and we are about to close four new clients and have set up meetings with six more. I’m looking to gain $2,780 per month on managed services revenue alone, and who knows how much more on new projects being discussed! This is too easy 🙂 To date, I have had to hire another field engineer or else scale back on the sales calls. The “Get Out of Computer Trouble Free” card is the best. This card, coupled with the managed services mailing campaign you gave us has worked the best for us. We are going to start mailing campaigns using other materials in the kit, and I fully intend to give you feedback as we go. Tell your other clients this: Pick about 25 really good potential clients and mail the material to them in U.S. Postal Service Priority Mail flat-rate envelopes. Spend the $4.05 postage per envelope. I know it sounds expensive, but it will pay off! Make sure to include a special report in addition to whatever material they decide to use. I look forward to giving you additional feedback as we make progress.”
Sincerely, Paul Miller, Owner, NOW! Technical Solutions
Now, here’s how you can use this to improve the marketing for your own managed services program…
- Use multi-step direct mail. Many people think direct mail is too expensive and ineffective, but when done right, you will find it will give you a higher return on your marketing dollars over all other marketing outside of referrals. To do it right, pick a highly targeted list of prospects and mail them an offer to get their first service call free (the “Get Out of Computer Trouble Free” card mentioned by Paul). Make sure you put a deadline to respond in order to build urgency. But don’t stop there. Make sure you mail that same list at least 3 or 4 times within that month to remind them of the deadline. If they still don’t respond, put them into your monthly newsletter mailing (yes, you should be doing a monthly newsletter). As an aside, make sure you really understand how to write powerful, convincing sales copy. If you don’t know how, get help. Lackluster sales copy will kill a marketing campaign.
- Paul mentioned using Postal Priority Mail to send his initial letter; this is critical to the response he’s getting. One of the biggest hurdles you have to overcome in marketing is getting your prospects to open and read your communication, whether it’s direct mail, e-mail or even a phone call. Using priority envelopes is a great way to ensure the prospect will open your mail. Obviously, only use this for highly-qualified prospects.
- Include a free report instead of a brochure. Generally, brochures are the biggest waste of time and money in marketing because no one reads them. The free report mentioned by Paul is a buyer’s guide on how to find and hire an honest, reliable, and trustworthy computer consultant. This report educates the buyer, answers frequently asked questions, and overcomes many of the common sales objections buyers have to managed services and outsourcing their computer support. Not only does this further sell the prospect on buying from Paul, but it also injects a great deal of efficiency into the sales process because the prospect is pre-sold before he ever calls Paul. Also, the free report provides valuable information to the buyer and therefore, it is more likely to get read.