Posts Tagged ‘MSP’

10 Marketing MUSTS For Every Campaign

Posted On June 16th, 2020

check list

The other day, as we were talking, a client shared with me an e-mail campaign sent out to close to 400 prospects WITH phone follow-up that generated a big fat ZERO. To be clear, not one of MY campaigns, but one they received from a vendor.

After reviewing it, I saw that it violated almost every one of the “10 Commandments” of good IT services marketing. Unfortunately, I see this a lot; campaigns hastily slapped together without any strategy or understanding of what it takes to get a response.

Time and money wasted. Therefore, I thought it would be beneficial to provide a slightly revised list of “MUSTS” for every campaign. Here are my 10 Marketing MUSTS for MSPs to use in all their campaigns.

  1. There MUST be absolute crystal clarity on WHO we want to attract as a client.
  2. The list MUST be validated, segmented and cleaned to avoid waste and to ensure the message is tightly matched to the market (prospect) receiving it.
  3. There MUST be an offer that the prospect will see high value in receiving. (i.e. Get a FREE 1-on-1 Marketing Consultation And Receive A Custom Marketing Roadmap…CLICK HERE)
  4. There MUST be strong sales copy that SELLS the offer or next step, NOT the ultimate product or service.
  5. The communication MUST be written to enter “the conversation going on” in the prospect’s or client’s mind.
  6. There MUST be testimonials and/or other trust- and credibility-building facts. (Click here for examples of GREAT testimonials.)
  7. There MUST be clear, specific instructions on how to respond, and more than one way to respond, ideally OFFLINE and ONLINE.
  8. There MUST be multiple communications/touches, ideally using more than one media.
  9. There MUST be accurate tracking and measurement.
  10. There MUST be a plan in place to quickly follow up on leads generated. (If you’re looking for a CRM specifically designed for MSPs who get marketing check out the Marketing Automation Platform)

Getting “Into” The Customer

Posted On June 10th, 2020

There’s an old sales joke about a hotshot sales guy sitting down with a little old lady to sell her a new heater. He tells her all about how the heater is made in America and has the highest-quality ratings for efficiency and safety, about the BTUs, construction, warranties and other features. When he finally shuts up, she says, “I only have one question – will this heater of yours keep a little old lady warm?”

I see this mistake a LOT in marketing. Salespeople get really hung up on all the FEATURES and start selling those instead of selling the end results the prospect actually wants.

This mistake is even easier to make in marketing when you don’t have the opportunity to ask the person questions and course-correct based on their answers. Therefore, you have to know enough about a prospect population (in general) to hit on common hot buttons, needs, wants and personal agendas and tap into those drivers.

To that end, a constant question I get is: “How do I find out what my clients want so I can sell it to them?” It’s a great question, but the answer is not one many like because it involves TALKING to your clients and prospects, and many shy, introverted “geeks” out there don’t like this critical aspect of marketing research. As Claude Hopkins once said (paraphrased), a casual conversation with half a dozen housewives will teach you more about how to sell laundry detergent than the most expensive and extensive market research and studies. Read full article and comment →

How To Avoid Confusing Activity With Accomplishment

Posted On June 3rd, 2020

How To Avoid Confusing Activity With AccomplishmentFrom AdWeek: 62% of small businesses see NO return on their investment in Facebook. From Forbes: 44% of businesses can’t even measure social media ROI. Despite this, according to a survey from the Manifest, 63% of small businesses plan on increasing their spend on social media (!). One social media “expert” commenting on this said that “not all social media traffic generates revenue” (Really? Who’da thunk) and went on to suggest that “you might measure conversations that originated with a social media visit and use that as a gauge of success.” He went on to say that it was especially important for start-ups to get followers because an initial “audience” was more important than an initial customer base. Count me unconvinced.

I’m not against using social media – what I AM against is wasting time, focus, energy and money on marketing activities that don’t directly lead to a paying client.

I’m often asked by members if it’s “worth” posting articles and other content on social media sites. They want to know if it’s a good idea. When I ask, “What are you hoping to accomplish with these activities? What does success look like?” I’ve never had anyone give me a precise answer. Not once. As in NEVER. They almost always go on to tell me why they are doing it – which is not the question I asked – and that response is almost always based in some feeling that they should be doing it. What they don’t say, but I’m sure is also driving their actions, is that this is something relatively easy to do, which makes them feel like they’re doing something (activity). But if activity was the only thing necessary to get results, you could hold a sign up and run around a business-park parking lot and reach as many (or more?) prospects. At least you’d get some exercise. Read full article and comment →

To Prospect Or NOT…That Is The Question

Posted On May 28th, 2020

Recently a number of questions have come in about how to go about prospecting right now. Some (most) feel it’s a very, very bad idea. I’m not so sure. Yes, I do think you have to be more strategTo prospect or notic and careful…but stop? Hell no.

At the time I’m writing this, we’ve booked 41 appointments for my sponsors sales team in the last eight days, all driven by sending e-mails and making phone calls. What makes this even more tricky is that we’re selling sponsorships to events. Remember those? Where we all got together in person and ignored social distancing, actually shook someone’s hand, broke bread, gave hugs?
Are we using some secret stealth script? Bribes? No…we’re just calling and asking, “Are you still looking to recruit MSP partners?” I know…sophisticated, right?

So, here are a few thoughts regarding COLD CALLS right now, and selling in GENERAL:

Read full article and comment →

How To Not Roll Over And Die (A Lesson In RESILIENCE)

Posted On May 21st, 2020

How to Not Roll Over And DieAs the casualties on the business battlefield start to pile up with the sudden forced cessation of business by the government, restaurants are taking a hit and many are closing their doors, never to reopen. However, in the midst of all this, one Seattle restaurant owner is THRIVING, with sales DOUBLE what they were the previous year, forcing him to double his staff and continue to look for more. How’s this possible? Simple: the owner of Addo, Eric Rivera, decided, “Not today, coronavirus, not today.”

He instantly shifted his entire business to pickup and delivery using his own staff to make drop-offs rather than using Grubhub or Uber Eats, which take almost all the profits in a restaurant’s takeout service. He then started selling food “bundles” including wine and now allows customers to preorder a three-pack of “heat and serve” meals for the week. He also initiated a “pay forward” $9 bowl of food they deliver to homeless shelters that people can buy. On March 17, they hit over 1,000 bowls purchased and delivered. Not too surprisingly, he INCREASED his marketing efforts and spend on social media and initiated a platform called Tock that allows customers to order meals and pick up on a selected day and time – not just when they’re ready to eat. Doing so has allowed them to better plan food ordering and minimize waste. He’s also changed his menu daily to keep things interesting and makes sure he delivers EXTRA wow in the service so customers keep coming back. Read full article and comment →

The Single Trick To Doubling Or Tripling The Leads Generated On Any Campaign You Run

Posted On May 14th, 2020

The Single Trick To Doubling Or Tripling The Leads Generated On Any Campaign You RunAs Ogilvy famously said, “On the average, five times as many people read the headline as read the body copy. When you have written your headline, you have spent 80 cents out of your dollar.” John Caples wrote, “If the headline is poor, the copy will not be read. And copy that is not read does not sell goods.” All true.

As a copywriter, I know the headline MUST stop the reader in their tracks and draw them in; after all, if you cannot get the reader’s attention, NOTHING else you’re saying or offering matters. Yet how many so-called adver- tisers actually know and practice this? Woefully few. Here’s a list of headlines for an industry publication designed to sell to YOU. Tell me if any of these grab your attention and cause you to want to read (or respond!) to the advertisement:

“Flexible Business VoIP”
“Technology Will Take You Far”
“Better. Faster. Greener.”
“Experience”
“Journey Together. Journey Further.”

Can you tell me from any of these headlines what’s being advertised? Who it’s for? What’s the benefit? My intention is not to embarrass the advertisers, but to make a point: these ads fail at the most basic copywriting and direct response fundamentals. Maybe they can afford a low-to-non-performing ad, but can you? So, a few guidelines to remember: Read full article and comment →

Removing The “Technician” Hat To Become A “R. E. A. L.” Entrepreneur (Rewarding, Easy, Attractive and Lucrative)

Posted On May 7th, 2020

Removing The “Technician” Hat To Become A “R. E. A. L.” Entrepreneur Much of our society incorrectly describes small business owners as “entrepreneurs.” But as Gerber famously pointed out, most entrepreneurs are not entrepreneurs at all – they’re technicians suffering from an entrepreneurial seizure. Nothing is truer in our industry, where most (roughly 80%) are self-employed with helpers, generating under a couple million in sales, who are busy doing it, doing it, doing it, with only a little growth year over year, no sales team, no marketing engine, no systems and processes, no equity.

While that’s where many start, it doesn’t mean that’s where they (you) have to stay. I started my business simply looking to replace a paycheck – not because I had a driving, entrepreneurial vision of a company I would one day create. Today, our growth and revenue put us in the top 1% of not only our category, but of all businesses. Similarly, many of our members come to us as “technicians” but evolve into very entrepreneurial leaders, similar to our current Spokesperson, Sitima Fowler, CEO of CapstoneIT. This should be your ambition as well, for one simple reason: it frees you from having to do all the work, giving you both stability and equity. At some point, you WILL get tired of “doing it, doing it, doing it.” Maybe you’re not there today, but mark my word, someday you will be.

Paul Monroe of ITechCare 24/7 is one of them. Last month he posted this (below) on the QUE about his journey of removing the tech hat. I decided to share it here because there are a LOT of people still “stuck” in the tech role. Some by choice, because that’s where their comfort level is. Others, like Paul, have come to realize they MUST get out of that role for their own sanity.
Read full article and comment →

How To Differentiate When There’s So Little Unique About What You Do

Posted On April 30th, 2020

Speaking of standing out from the crowd, below is a real cereal being sold on Amazon Prime called “Poop Like A Champion.” I’m not 100% sure it’s the best name, BUT it certainly does get the “don’t bury the benefit” award in advertising. At least they didn’t put a picture of the end result on the box (LOL). BUT it DOES have something most products don’t: a UNIQUE differentiator, also called a USP.

Although I’ve covered this topic multiple times, I’ve gotten a TON of questions about it from new clients via their NewMember Survey, so a refresher…

We do managed services, backups, cyber security, help desk, documentation, blah blah blah. ZERO differentiation. It’s “WHAT”-based marketing. And when your service looks exactly like everybody else’s, it’s exponentially more difficult to get a customer and near impossible to maintain or grow margins, because there’s always someone willing to undercut you on price – and prospects will always default to price as the means for their decision, given no other logical reason to spend more. Why wouldn’t they? Further, you’re interchangeable with everyone else (or at least appear to be). Problem is, it’s getting harder and harder to obtain TRUE differentiation. Read full article and comment →