We've written a lot on this blog about how important - and challenging - it is to stand out in the IT services market. The barrier for entry into the market isn't terribly difficult so there are a lot of IT services providers out there competiting for the same group of clients. How do you grow in a crowded field?
We presented a webinar on this very topic earlier this week. Stuart Crawford of MSP marketing consultant Ulistic was our presenter, and he shared a number of proven strategies to expand your MSP business in a competitive market in a webinar titled "The Competition is Fierce! How Can Your MSP Win New Business?"
Just how crowded is the channel? In a blog this spring, The 2112 Group revealed some of the results of its 2014 Channel Forecast: The Shrinking Channel study, which found that 37 percent of service providers report having seven or more direct competitors. On top of that, 27 percent said they have a whopping 11 direct competitors or more.
With many IT service providers selling similar or even identical services, MSPs need to "stop being like everybody else," Stuart recommended in this week's webinar. Factors outside of technology - including company culture, unique expertise, and value-add services - can help define why an SMB would rather do business with you than someone else.
It also helps to identify your core target of "top prospects." Just in the way sports scouts narrow down a list of "top prospects" so they can follow and evaluate only the very best athletes for their team, Stuart suggests identifying a list of businesses would you absolutely want to work with.
Once you've identified these top prospects, you're able to develop targeted sales and marketing strategies that consistently appeal to their needs and wants.
It's a much more efficient and effective way of marketing, but only works if you're consistent and dogged in your approach. Some prospects might not begin to respond to your efforts for months, but if you're been consistently top-of-mind - out-working your competition and doing the right marketing tasks every day - prospects are much more likely to remember your company when the time is right.
What's the benefit of all this planning and persistance? You could double your MSP sales revenue within a year, Stuart promises.
The webinar includes plenty of Stuart's tried-and-tested strategies for sales and marketing success, including tips on how to:
- Identify your ideal buyers and target prospects
- Develop a layered marketing strategy to reach them
- Speak to the needs of your prospects to pique their interest
Click the button below to replay the webinar!