Professional services can be a major profit-driver for MSPs, barring that they know how to communicate the value of these services to SMBs.
Rob also touches on the difficulty some services providers encounter when marketing IT support: the perception that it's an offering customers can choose to opt in or out of.
The best way to refine your professional services pitch is to ask yourself "the million-dollar questions" that can help frame the value you can provide to SMBs beyond the technology you sell. Communicating that value effectively makes IT support a "must-have" offering.
What are the "million-dollar questions"? Each one evaluates the benefits your support offers to customers. Are you able to reduce your SMBs' downtime? Can you save them money? Prevent outages? Make things run more efficiently or securely?
If you're able to answer these questions, you can begin to communicate to customers why the professional services you offer aren't optional, but instead critical services the SMB needs to run a more effective business.
That speaks more directly to the problems your customers have - and that you can solve. And it puts you in a better position to develop managed services packages and pricing that yields higher revenue and growth potential.
At the end of the day, many MSPs enjoy great success selling professional services. In a guest post we published this spring, The 2112 Group reported that 55 percent of MSPs said that at least 70 percent of their SMB customers were paying them for professional services.
That's a pretty healthy utilization rate, and indicates that SMBs see the value of professional services - when it's presented the right way.
Rob's blog also includes tips for bundling professional services and technology together to maximize revenue and profits. Give the full blog, "Pricing MSP Services for Maximum Business Value," a read.