MSP Marketing Blog

The Dos And Don’ts Of Marketing Your MSP In An Unstable Economy

Posted by Robin Robins On March 27th, 2020

Unstable EconomyRight now, the economy is being upended and many of you are worried the COVID-19 pandemic will destroy your business. Unfortunately, this is not the first time I have faced this in business.

NOTE: Before I go on, I’ve done a free webcast on “How To Avoid Losing Clients And Still Market Your MSP During The COVID-19 Crisis.” You can watch and get the templates and slides at: www.TechnologyMarketingToolkit.com/prosper

From 2008 to around 2012 we lost roughly 30% of our client base due to the recession. They just closed their doors or had credit cards declining. Despite that, I still grew those years in both top- and bottom-line revenue, so you CAN actually thrive in the face of a difficult economy. Here are my recommendations… Read full article and comment →

The Secret To Positioning Your MSP

Posted by Robin Robins On March 18th, 2020

Wives Wanted | The Secret To Positioning Your MSP | Technology Marketing ToolkitWhile there certainly IS a play for simply stating who you want as a client (as in the photo here), successful lead generation requires an irresistible offer and GREAT PROMISE to work.

Most businesses do NOT make such a promise in their marketing and selling activities and suffer from suppressed response rates and less-than-stellar results.

Such a promise puts your competition in a precarious position; they either have to ignore this type of claim and risk having their current clients and prospects assume they are inadequate or unable to deliver such promises, or they have to defend themselves and say, “Hey! We do too!” which comes across as a copycat and is a far weaker position, appearing as though they were forced to play catchup with the competition.

This is a BIG secret to positioning your MSP! Read full article and comment →

Create Your Own Luck By MSP Marketing With GREAT Client Testimonials And Success Stories

Posted by Robin Robins On March 11th, 2020

MSP Marketing With Client Testimonials | Technology Marketing ToolkitHere’s a question: When was the last time you added a fresh new case study or testimonial to your website? To your Google reviews? To your Shock-And-Awe box? One thing you ought to be constantly paying attention to is the quantity and quality of reviews and testimonials you’re getting.

Clients in B2B ventures often don’t think to give reviews. Home service businesses, restaurants and companies delivering retail services are more likely to get reviews unsolicited. In professional services, you HAVE to ask for and cultivate them – specifically, start measuring the impact you have on your clients.

One thing you can count on is that clients won’t. If you aren’t providing tangible metrics of productivity, security, uptime, speed and performance, you leave it entirely up to the client to arbitrarily determine if they are getting results – or not.

One of the things we have built into our Rapid Implementation Workshops is MEASUREMENT. We require this tracking and reporting of activities, leads and sales MOSTLY for the purpose of bringing awareness of critical metrics and leading indicators to our clients.

In doing so, we ensure they are far more likely to get results due to Pearson’s law: Anything measured improves. Anything measured and reported upon to someone else improves exponentially. Read full article and comment →

What Can An MSP Owner Learn About Marketing From George Foreman?

Posted by Robin Robins On March 5th, 2020

George Foreman

Two-time Heavyweight Champion and genius entrepreneur George Foreman will be ONE of the keynote speakers at our upcoming Boot Camp. Some have criticized the decision, saying, “We’re IT guys – not a room full of professional boxers or TV personalities, so why waste time listening to THIS guy?” So, please allow me to address that AND serve the dual purpose of delivering a solid “fundamental” in marketing that everyone needs to understand: personal brand.

For starters, many people think I’m against branding since I often say (and do believe) that spending money on branding ads and promotions for the sheer purpose of image advertising (not lead generation) IS wasteful. I prefer marketing that can be ruthlessly held accountable for a return that does the dual purpose of branding.

Further, I believe that building a personal brand IS a very smart, strategic approach to differentiation in a world where true differentiation is difficult to come by. George is a perfect example of this.

He took an ordinary kitchen appliance that could be gotten anywhere and turned it into one of the best-selling products in retail history – and he did it purely on his own personal brand.

Read full article and comment →

The Most Effective Lead Generation Formula

Posted by Robin Robins On February 19th, 2020

Effective Lead Generation Formula | Technology Marketing ToolkitProblem. Agitate. Solve.

The above is the oldest and still one of the most effective lead generation formulas. More specifically, identify a highly irritating problem, anxiety, worry or frustration your clients have. Next, AGITATE it. Make them FEEL even more annoyed, frustrated and worried about it – and THEN offer the solution to the problem.

As I’ve long taught, effective marketing copy is about “bringing latent dissatisfaction to a boil.” But to do that, you have to know how your prospect thinks and feels. You also must know the specific problems they are dealing with on a day-to-day basis AND be able to articulate those problems to such a degree that they feel you’ve been following them around all day, reading their mind.

Only then can you be effective at writing a marketing communication that gets and holds their attention, triggering a “That’s right” response.

After you’ve effectively stirred up the emotional beehive and whipped them into a lather, you need to move them to action – but selling the solution outright is not the right idea. What WE want to do, particularly in selling advice and services, is to generate a lead.

More specifically, to get a call or scheduled appointment with the prospect. To that end, you DON’T want to reveal too much of what the end solution truly is or you’ll risk them hastily dismissing your solution, thinking they either don’t LIKE the solution or triggering a knee-jerk response of “I tried that before and it didn’t work,” or “That solution is too expensive/not a right fit for us/etc.”

On a recent Q&A call, one of our members was inquiring about what campaign would be most effective to sell an application for financial consolidation reporting. The target market is the CFO or senior VP of finance of a manufacturing firm. All marketing up until now has been word of mouth, which, while terrific, makes one lazy on how to hunt (and, for the record, I’m not suggesting THEY are “lazy,” but they are inexperienced on how to go gin up a customer from scratch).

That’s the problem with any company that relies on word of mouth: you’re akin to a baby bird getting worms dropped in your mouth. Unless you get pushed out, you’ll never develop the strength or skills to leave the nest.

So what campaign would work and how should they go about this?

For starters, they must FIRST determine the emotional drivers that will get a prospect’s attention and get them to MOVE. If they cannot do that, NO marketing will work, or work to the level it could. Not e-mails, websites, direct mail, trade show booths, etc. If your MESSAGE is weak or off target, no media delivery system can make up for its shortcomings.

So if we look at the five-step buying process outlined below, the question is: “What problems, frustrations and angst are going on right now in your prospect’s mind that your solution solves?” Essentially, what is the “awareness” that will trigger them to respond?

  1. Awareness of a need
  2. Picking the solution to the problem (category)
  3. Picking the source of the solution (vendor)
  4. Accepting the terms and pricing
  5. Finding a reason to buy now

For example, a senior VP of finance delivers a report to the CEO that is either incorrect or he suspects is inaccurate, not because he’s incapable of providing an accurate report, but simply because he doesn’t have the correct, up-to-date data he needs AND he’s handcuffed with inadequate tools. That makes him HIGHLY anxious and gives him feelings of embarrassment when he’s incorrect, frustration over the fact he cannot GET accurate data, and anxiety about his job. That being the case, an appropriate headline to test would be:

Attention CFOs Of Manufacturing Firms: There’s FINALLY An Easy, Surefire Way To QUICKLY Get Accurate Financial Information And Reports With Just A Few Clicks

Or…

CFOs: Are You Beyond Frustrated Using Time- Intensive, Highly Inaccurate Spreadsheets To Compile Financial Reports For Your Manufacturing Firm?

He might even realize his efforts are being undermined because he’s forced to use tools that are far too simplistic for the job. Another piece of “copy” I’d include in the lead generation ad could be “Do you know you’re simply unable to do your best work and deliver accurate reports because you’re forced to use out-of-date tools like Excel spreadsheets to do the work required by more sophisticated applications?”

I might also throw in “If you want to stop pouring HOURS of work into creating financial reports that you know have a high chance of being inaccurate due to your inability to get accurate data in a timely manner, then read on…” You get the idea.

From there, I might offer a free report on “How To Break Free From The X Biggest Growth Bottlenecks Manufacturing Firms Face That Keep Them Small, Struggling And Unprofitable.” What I would NOT do is start talking about the specific software, for two reasons.

One, they may not have heard of it, and it could trigger them to call their current IT company or guy to inquire about it, rather than calling YOU. Two, it could create the “I don’t want THAT solution” knee-jerk response. I would ONLY reveal the “solution” during the consultation or in a carefully constructed “free” piece of content, like a report or webinar.

But remember, generating the initial shy response is no more than a spark – it’s not on fire yet. So your content and sales process needs to continue to move them through the process of picking the solution (why the software is hands down the BEST solution for them), why they need to buy from YOU over other vendors doing the same thing, or using their internal IT department to take a crack at it.

Then building the value to make price a non-issue, getting them “sold” on the process (particularly if it’s a painful, slow process to get it installed and working) and then building the want big enough to get them to buy NOW. Much of this can be assisted with marketing, but it truly is the job of a SALESperson.

Whether you need help with your marketing, sales or both, we have you covered. The Technology Marketing Toolkit is full of PROVEN, highly-effective IT services marketing plans, lead generation tools and sales training like the strategy above. Learn more and get our proprietary marketing roadmap customized for your business on a FREE one-on-one consultation. Schedule yours today at www.technologymarketingtoolkit.com/consult

MSP Sales: What To Do With The First “No”

Posted by Robin Robins On February 12th, 2020

MSP Sales: What To Do With The First “No” | Technology Marketing ToolkitThe first real sales training I ever received was when I was working for Tony Robbins as a rep selling his Personal Power and Power To Influence courses. It was a great experience, to say the least. Tony taught his reps to ignore the first “no,” saying that some prospects throw out an objection or a “no” just as a means of conversing. He’s right to a point.

Time and experience have taught me there’s other more important reasons to “ignore” the first objection you get.

To be clear, you don’t “ignore” it in the sense that you don’t hear them out or you brush it off – but what you DON’T want to do is immediately jump on it, defending your point of view.

Such actions are rookie mistakes. Instead, hear them out and ask questions to explain it. They say, “The price is too high.” You could mirror them, repeating back the objection with a curious, questioning tone: “The price is too high?” Or say, “Compared to…?” and then wait for them to fill in the blank.

Or get them to explain it by asking for specifics: “What do you feel is too high – the project or the monthly fee?” Or, “Okay, is that your only concern?” Read full article and comment →

How To PROFITABLY Show A Little Love To Break-Fix Clients

Posted by Robin Robins On February 5th, 2020

How To PROFITABLY Show A Little Love To Break-Fix Clients | Technology Marketing ToolkitIt’s the month of love! Every month I answer a couple of questions from new members in our monthly newsletter and was reflecting on one about what almost every MSP and IT services owner tries to avoid – the “cheap” break-fix client.  This client had gotten enough requests to begin questioning if he was overlooking an opportunity. Read on for my reply…

First, I don’t know of a SINGLE industry or client type that all MSPs would say have abundant and open pocketbooks for spending on IT. ALL would say their clients are “cheap” and unwilling to spend money on what it is they sell.

The simple truth is that YOU have to MAKE them want to buy what you sell.

Are you presenting price properly? Building value in the sales process? ARE you TRULY the most expensive? If yes, are you presenting solid, logical arguments as to why they should spend MORE money with you over anyone else? Are you properly screening out those who truly ARE too cheap, too broke? Read full article and comment →

How To Stand Out In A World Of Fake “Experts”

Posted by Robin Robins On January 29th, 2020

UntrustworthyThe other day a marketing publication featured an article titled “What To Do If Your E-mail’s Been Hacked.” These “experts” said that if your day was “disrupted” when you discovered you had infected all of your clients and friends with a virus due to them receiving an e-mail from you, you should “be proactive and send another e-mail to apologize to anyone who might have received a bogus message from you.”

They went on to say that “big-dog providers like Google and Yahoo know about it and will get rid of it on their end.” I can sense your underwear tightening up.

Another very well-known and in demand cyber security “expert” with a New York Times best-selling book, a TED Talk speaker with additional keynote engagements lined up at $50,000 a pop, with corporate clients paying BIG bucks for his advice, actually recommended that people turn off their computers at night to cut down on the chance of getting a virus by 50%. He DIDN’T advise them to install a firewall, spam filter, backup, etc., etc. Just turn it off. At night. When the bad guys come out. Read full article and comment →