Ask Intronis: How to use file sync and share to grow your MSP business

Posted by Courtney Steinkrauss on Jun 8, 2015 9:00:00 AM

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Ask Intronis is a weekly advice column answering common questions from MSPs and IT service providers. It covers topics ranging from pricing and selling to marketing and communications—and everything in between. Submit your questions by emailing AskIntronis@intronis.com.

Q: I’ve been looking at the business-grade file sync and share solutions on the market, and I can see the value these types of solutions could have for my business and for my small business customers. As an MSP, I know there’s an opportunity to leverage the solution to bring in more business. Do you have any advice on how I can sell file sync and share to customers who might be reluctant to try it?

File and FolderYou’re right—selling file sync and share is one way to bring in more business as a managed service provider. At Intronis, we know the value in offering a business-grade file sync and share solution, both for MSPs and their small business customers.

While there are a number of consumer-grade solutions on the market, they fall short of securing businesses’ critical data and protecting their sensitive information. This is something you should emphasize in your conversations with prospective file sync and share customers. 

Chose the right solution

There are a variety of business-grade solutions available, so before you chose a particular solution, make sure that it works for your customers, too. For example, do you primarily service customers in the retail industry? If so, you’ll need to make sure the solution you choose to resell is PCI/DSS compliant.

Be sure to consider what tools customers are already using, what level of security they would need, and what type of user experience would make the solution work for their business. Using this information, you’ll know to leverage a solution that, for example, meets certain compliance regulations and offers integrations with tools like Office 365. 

A business-grade file sync-and-share solution should also have centralized administration where business owners can password protect files and control user access. Look for a solution that has a mobile application for remote access to files. This is helpful for customers that are constantly on the road and need quick access to presentations or documents.  

Sell to the right customers

We spoke with Abbey Greene, a partner success manager here at Intronis, to get her tips on how to sell file sync and share to your small business customers. She told us that the key is proactively looking for customers who could use file sync and share to make their business more productive.

For example, she told us about an MSP partner that was working with a veterinary practice that needed to share X-rays of horses with their lab technicians but was unable to send the extremely large files through e-mail. The MSP introduced Intronis ECHOshare as a file sync and share solution that had no limits to file size and allowed the veterinary business to share those large images.

Here are three methods Abbey recommends for selling file sync and share to your small business customers.

1. Sell as part of bundled services

A method that I’ve found works for our MSP partners is to sell file sync and share to prospects as part of a bundled service offering. This way, if the prospect was skeptical about if they needed the solution, they will get it as a value-added service.

Introduce your file sync and share solution as a way of further protecting their data. If they’re interested in purchasing cloud backup from you, then you know they are looking to protect their data. By using a file sync and share solution, they’ll know their data is not only backed up but also encrypted in transit and protected from the various cyber threats while employees are sharing documents and collaborating.

Emphasize that your solution can help them be more productive. They will no longer have to email large files or download documents from e-mail attachments. Also, their employees will be able to access content on mobile devices, computers, and tablets, allowing them to access company files via the cloud and get work done remotely. Not to mention, the solution helps them collaborate more easily with third parties and their own customers. 

2. Replace consumer-grade solutions

Ask your prospective customers if they’re using a consumer-grade solution for file sharing. You’ll find that most of them are currently using Google Drive, Box, or iCloud. These customers present an opportunity for you to replace that product with your secure business-grade file sharing solution.

Educate your prospects on the limitations of consumer-grade solutions. A few key areas include the level of security, integrations with other products, and compliance with industry regulations.

Create supporting marketing collateral or use ours to show how your solution stacks up against the consumer-grade options in these areas. It will help your prospective customers see the value in adding a business-grade solution. 

3. Sell to your current customers

Offering a file sync and share solution is a great way to leverage your current customer base to bring in more recurring revenue. Add this service to a few current service agreements, and you’ll see the value add up quickly over the next few billing periods.

Determine which of your current customers could benefit from using this solution, and in your next scheduled call or site visit, ask them how they would use file sync and share to address their business’ needs. Speaking with your customers about it will help you better understand their needs, objections, and concerns. This will also help you prepare to meet objections from prospects and sell them on file sync and share. 

Chose from Abbey’s three strategies for selling file sync and share, and decide which one works best for your MSP business.Then find the right prospects and customers and prepare for the sales conversation. Be sure to create marketing collateral that supports what you’re telling them in a competitive matrix or data sheet. It also might be helpful to offer a trial period of the solution, allowing them to get comfortable using the product and evaluate the advantages it offers.

With Abbey’s tips, you’ll be on your way to bringing in more revenue for your business.  

Replay the webinar: Why consumer sync-and-share is bad for business  

Photo Credit: Becky Wetherington on Flickr. Used under CC 2.0 license. 

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