MSP Marketing Blog

When Is It Good To Scare Your Customers And Prospects?

Posted by Robin Robins On October 30th, 2019

Scaring ClientHalloween is upon is, as is my final installment of scary business stories. This week is a lesson in spooking your own clients. Because the need for IT services can be easy to shrug off until you’re faced with disaster.

A force of nature hits and they’re not properly backed up. A “ghost” clicks a link in a phishing e-mail (because no one ever wants to admit they did it).  Michael Myers goes digital and hacks their network. Read on the for the “Tale Of The Sales Call Coming From Inside Your Business.”

People who think opportunistically get a bad rap – but EVERY tragedy carries with it big opportunity, and there are two sides to every coin.

As an IT firm, YOU benefit every time a new ransomware attack makes headlines, a new regulation goes into effect for data protection or a vendor announces they’ll discontinue support for their software (Windows 7).

But do you quickly do everything you can to capitalize on the opportunity such tragedies and problems may present? Read full article and comment →

4 Ways To Keep Your Marketing Out Of The Graveyard

Posted by Robin Robins On October 24th, 2019

Marketing GraveWhat does every SMART marketer dream of? An offer so good it brings in quality clients in droves.

I recently received a piece of mail that came SO CLOSE, but, alas, their campaign fell short of what it could have produced. This week I share with you the “Tale Of The Dead Marketing Campaign.”

The postcard was mailed in an “invitation”-type envelope from our local Bentley dealer. I’m assuming they got my name from a visit to the dealership a few years ago, or perhaps targeted by zip code for high-end homes. The offer is a good one: they’ll give you a Bentley to test-drive for two days. VERY smart.

However, I called and left a voice mail and e-mailed them my interest but never received ANY follow-up, as in ZERO.

This is such a waste, it’s painful. As a marketer, I know all too well how damned difficult it is to get prospects to respond, so you HAVE to be ready with fast, aggressive sales folks who will take those calls and follow up, follow up, follow up. Inbound leads are tiny sparks of interest that need to be fanned, nurtured and fueled carefully like smoldering kindling when building a fire. Read full article and comment →

Are You Scaring Away Potential Clients With These Mistakes?

Posted by Robin Robins On October 16th, 2019

Scary MummyAs a lover of Halloween and all things spooky, my favorite time of year is here. But there are things that truly frighten me, like bad business practices. So gather ‘round for the “Tale Of The Lost Prospect.”

Often we’ll get this e-mail from a member: “I ran the X campaign and got Y leads, but none of them closed and they’re all thinking it over. What can I do to get them to buy?”

Tough question. The true answer is to get in a time machine and go back to the beginning of the sale and not screw it up.

The “I need to think it over” response is code for “I’m not certain about buying from YOU.” Not price, not terms, not anything, although that is the way a prospect will articulate their reason for not buying. Or they’ll simply tell you they need to think it over and then proceed to ignore your calls and e-mails.

Once you’ve met with and quoted a prospect, it’s enormously difficult to UNDO their opinion of you. Certain judgments have already been formed and an aggressive follow-up can make things WORSE by making you appear needy and desperate, pushing a prospect further away. Read full article and comment →

Five List Management Tips That Will Make Your Marketing And Your Business More Valuable

Posted by Robin Robins On October 9th, 2019

Post a NoteLast week I revealed to you that the secret to above average results in your business is the care, development and management of your list. Now that you know the secret and you’ve had some time to think about it, you’re probably wondering what you can do to make your list a true asset.

Here’s a quick list of disciplines for list management that you might post up somewhere as a reminder to you and your marketing team:

  1. GARBAGE IN, GARBAGE STAYS. Someone needs to own the cleaning, updating and segmenting of every new lead that comes into your organization. This is especially true if you’re doing a lot of marketing and generating any significant number of leads. Otherwise your list will be full of duplicates, spam, not-right-fit prospects and other useless contacts, giving you false numbers, slowing down your sales team and clogging up all marketing efforts.
  2. Read full article and comment →

This Is The Single Most Valuable And Important Marketing Asset In Your Organization

Posted by Robin Robins On October 2nd, 2019

2 Business OwnersHarken unto me as I reveal THE secret shared by highly successful entrepreneurs, sales professionals and marketers that is completely missed by the masses. This IS the difference between businesses that enjoy above-average results and even extraordinary success and the vast mediocre majority. What is it?

They are obsessed with the care, development and management of their LIST.

Without a doubt, your list is the single biggest asset in your business. If you were to sell your company, what is the buyer REALLY buying? Your software licenses? Your employees? Your office furniture? Nope. They’re buying your CUSTOMERS, which is another way of saying your “list.” The more productive a relationship you have with your list – specifically how responsive they are to you – the easier, more lucrative, more stable your business becomes.

But is YOUR list an actual asset? Read full article and comment →

Critical Strategy For MSP Sales Success: Negative Preparation

Posted by Robin Robins On September 26th, 2019

Sweating ItFrom sales expert Jack Daly: there’s hardly anything that goes on in a sales call that couldn’t be anticipated before one’s arrival. I would modify that slightly: there’s hardly anything NEGATIVE that goes on in a sales call that couldn’t be anticipated and PLANNED FOR before one’s arrival.

A couple of years ago at the Chicago Roadshow, mid-morning the first day, the power went out. Supposedly a squirrel met his untimely doom with a transformer.

No lights, no microphone, no air conditioning and no projector. I was onstage at the time and paused only for a minute to make a funny comment about the power being off, but then kept right on speaking. Many commented how impressed they were with my composure. One even railed on Facebook that all women entrepreneurs and feminists ought to take note of “how it’s done!” I found all of this funny.

There was only one reason I was able to go on with the show: NEGATIVE PREPARATION.

I had this same situation happen at one other event years ago and was woefully unprepared for it. It cost me dearly in sales because I was so dependent upon that PowerPoint that I was barely able to continue going. The room became swelteringly hot and I lost my voice – but I learned. Read full article and comment →

Does Your Marketing Feed Your Bottom Line Or Your Ego?

Posted by Robin Robins On September 19th, 2019

I was recently reminded of brilliant direct marketer Axel Andersson, a Swede who moved to Germany and later the US and who ran a hugely successful home-study school in Hamburg, Germany, before coming stateside. Axel hired one of his successful students and put his office right next to his own so he had to walk past his office every day. He did this because he “wanted to actually see one of my customers every day.”

He also hired a professor from a local university as a consultant. Axel wrote:

Before I would test a new ad, I would run it by my former student and also give it to the professor for her reaction. If the student liked it, I would go with it. If the professor liked it, I would change it.

So often I hear new clients taking a marketing campaign from the Toolkit and, instead of running it, they first give it to their techs or their spouse for an opinion before sending it out.

BIG mistake. Read full article and comment →

The #1 Challenge MSPs Face With E-mail Marketing… And 6 Ways You Can Overcome It

Posted by Robin Robins On September 12th, 2019
According to a survey we conducted on www.MSPSuccessMagazine.com, a shocking 34% of the MSPs polled said they are NOT using e-mail to market to their list, and 24% said they are “kind of” using e-mail. Essentially, 58% of MSPs are not doing any e-mail marketing or are doing it so inconsistently that they aren’t getting traction.

Cited as the #1 challenge they have with e-mail marketing: CONTENT CREATION. I suppose they’re correct in NOT sending anything if they don’t have anything good to send. But given that e-mail IS a cheap, fast and easy way to gin up some leads and opportunities, it’s a crying shame they don’t work on figuring this out – so below is a quick list of six ways you can find and create GOOD content that is easy to create, interesting and (as a side benefit) good for SEO.
  1. Use FAQs as a muse for content. If you’re struggling to come up with something to write about, the easiest place to start is to make a list of the top 10 most frequently asked questions you get, making each one the topic for a piece of content. Since these are FREQUENTLY asked questions, you know there’s a good number of people who are interested in the answer. For example, you might get the question “What do you guys charge?” from new prospects. Tweak that question into an article headline such as “What Should A Small Business In Nashville Expect To Pay For Good IT Services And Support?” Not only will this content give you SEO juice, but it will give you a good article to send to prospects who ask the question.

    Another strategy: write down the top 10 questions people SHOULD ask their IT consultant but don’t. For example, if you offered IT services to medical practices, a great article would be “How To Know If Your IT Company Has The Right Liability Insurance To Cover Your Medical Practice In The Event Of A Breach That Is Their Fault.” FAQs about cyber security, keeping kids safe online and online privacy are also surefire winners. One final good tip: after you’re done writing the article, record a video of you answering that same question and post it on YouTube. You could post both the video and the article on your site. Since some visitors are more likely to watch video than read (and vice versa), this gives you the ability to produce two pieces of content for every one topic/question.
  2. Use the TechTip postcards as the basis for a post or longer article. Included with your membership is access to the TechTip library. These short clips can be easily turned into a quick e-mail and blog post. Another good hack: take one of the free report templates we’ve provided you in the various programs and parcel out chunks for a short e-mail and blog post. One more: IF you are a Producers, Accelerators or Infusionsoft member, USE THE CYBER-TIPS CAMPAIGN!

    Our members consider this one of the most effective and loved campaigns, providing a quick, short and USEFUL cyber security tip every week. Not a member? Go to www.technologymarketingtoolkit.com/consult/  and book a free consultation to see if our program could be right for you.
  3. Comment on current events. Whenever there is a headline cyber security breach, people want to know what happened, how it may (or may not) affect them and what they should do now (if anything). This is ALWAYS a surefire winner for content – but timeliness is critical. Don’t wait a couple of weeks to send the e-mail. Ideally, get your e-mail/article out within 24 hours of the news hitting. You can release subsequent updates as more information is learned, giving you additional content people will want to read. Another newsworthy topic is compliance.

    If there are laws being passed – in your state or in others – that impact your clients, give an overview of what the law is, when it goes into effect and what people need to do to comply. Even if it’s not law in YOUR state yet, you can write about it as a warning of what might come. Another good topic is disaster preparedness checklists and information when a natural disaster is looming (like you’re coming into hurricane season) or immediately after a disaster hits somewhere in the world. Each niche and city has “news” happening all the time. Simply keep an eye out for new headlines and create your own spin on what it means and what people should do.
  4. Highlight client success stories. Just make sure the content is not merely an overblown testimonial. Case studies follow the format of stating/outlining the problem, discussing the solution they (you) implemented and the final result. Just make sure there are interesting and useful “lessons learned” that others can benefit from. To see an example of this, go to our website: technologymarketingtoolkit.com/articles/genius-of-the-month.
  5. Don’t shy away from sending sales pitches. Yes, you CAN overdo it. However, your list will not only tolerate the occasional sales pitch, but appreciate it. You can also blend content with a sales pitch (my favorite), where you e-mail clients to read an article that provides solid content but also offers a call to action at the end. For example, you might write an article on employees being the biggest threat to a company’s security, titling it “The Most Dangerous Cyber Security Threat Hiding In Plain Sight In Your Small Business.”

    At the end of the article, you could offer a cyber security training webinar for free as a lead generation strategy or for sale. If your article is well written, with interesting, useful content, your e-mail recipients won’t mind the pitch at the end.
  6. Share other people’s content. Specifically, if there’s an article you like or a video on YouTube you know your audience (list) would appreciate, it’s perfectly okay to share it via your blog. You don’t have to author everything. If it’s a public YouTube video, you can get your web designer to have it shared via your page without repercussions since it’s still hosted on YouTube. If it’s an article on someone else’s website, get permission to repost it.

    Many authors and websites won’t mind you sharing their content if you keep the author and source intact and provide a link to their site – but don’t assume that, and always ask. I would not recommend you simply drive traffic to that person’s site; instead, post the content on yours with clarity that you are not the author.
MSP Success Magazine is a print and digital publication dedicated to helping the CEOs and owners of managed IT services businesses build strong, profitable, growth-oriented businesses. Sign up to receive your copy at www.MSPSuccessMagazine.com