I’m sure that you’ve already tried every possible strategy to convince prospects to hire your MSP company instead of the competition.
But I’m also sure that you still don’t really know why they pick one MSP to another.
Lucky for you, that’s what I’m going to cover in this post.
In fact, I’ll show you a 5-step process that, once you implement it, will help you ensure that potential clients will always consider your MSP company first.
Intrigued? Then let’s begin.
(Before we start, though, let me be upfront with you. None of these steps could be considered quick-fixes. They require resources like time and money to implement. But the benefits they offer significantly outweigh the cost.)
#1. Develop a Stronger Unique Selling Proposition than Your Competitors’
Does your business have a unique selling proposition (USP), a statement that explains to your potential clients why they should buy from you instead of your competitors?
The chances are that, even though it does, your USP isn’t as strong as what your competition tells their prospects.
And with that, fails to provide potential customers with powerful enough reason to choose you.
But to understand the importance of having a stronger USP, let’s take a step back and look at what is a unique selling proposition, and why you should have one.
Bryan Eisenberg, a renowned sales author, and speaker explains a business’ USP in these words:
“By USP, or unique selling proposition, I don’t mean a slogan or a phrase that will appear in your advertising, although that’s one potential use for it. Rather I mean the concise and memorable phrase that answers your prospect’s always-implicit question, “Why should I do business with you and not somebody else?”
Some of the World’s most memorable unique selling proposition examples include (images via Marketing Results):
And the benefits of developing a unique selling proposition are many:
- For one, it can help you attract more clients.
- It makes the sales process easier since prospects already know what makes you unique on the market.
- It provides you with a unique hook to differentiate your marketing.
- And it helps clients to recommend your company, by giving them the exact pitch they could use to convince someone to your MSP.
But how do you create a USP that outshines your competition? My favorite copywriter, Bob Bly, shares some strategies in this article:
- Focus on you a unique aspect of your service. Make sure that’s something that delivers a significant benefit to customers.
- Narrow your target marketing and focus on a specific niche. CitiusTech, for example, offers their services to healthcare sector only. Their USP makes them a top choice for any healthcare company looking for IT help.
#2. Find Your Unfair Advantage
In 2010, Jason Cohen, the founder of WP Engine, a hosting company, described the idea of unfair advantage in these words:
“A real unfair advantage is one that cannot easily be copied or bought.”
It’s that one thing you have that no one else could easily acquire (via money or other means).
In the IT industry, a good example of unfair advantage is experience in a highly-specialized area, market, or niche.
Although many companies might try to enter such market, customers will naturally choose providers with the greatest experience.
Authority is another example, and we’re going to talk about it in more detail later in this post.
People, your team, could also provide you with an unfair advantage over the competition, through their expertise, variety of specific skills, and competence.
Associations with influencers, or industry leaders, or being part of larger network of companies could also help you position your business in a way your competition could not easily replicate.
Other examples include patents, data, exclusive contracts, and much more.
Finally, market share helps companies lock in the competition from easily catching up.
Consider what is the one thing you have that your competitors couldn’t easily replicate, and communicate it to create an unfair advantage for your MSP business.
#3. Build Your Authority
Think about it:
If you had a choice between a little-known vendor with hardly any qualifications, and an established firm, known for their expertise, what would your choice be?
Naturally, you’d go for the established provider. So do your clients when they choose an MSP to hire.
Because you see, everyone wants to work with experts. And so, getting your company recognized as such is a next step towards becoming an obvious choice for prospects.
There is practically an unlimited number of ways you could build your authority and expert status. However, personally, I recommend you start with the following ones:
Guest post on authority sites your prospects frequent.
In case, if you’re unsure what is guest blogging, let me cover the definition very quickly:
Guest blogging is a marketing strategy in which a person contributes content to another, not their own, website, blog or any other publication, and in turn, gains exposure to that audience.
And the examples of business people who’ve used this strategy to achieve success are many:
- Author, speaker, and co-founder of Branderati, Ekaterina Walter attributes much of her success to guest blogging.
- Buffer, the social sharing platform gained their first 100000 customers through this strategy.
- Mob.is.it used guest blogging to grow their site’s traffic by a staggering 20%.
Write a blog
Apart from posting content on other websites, you should publish advice relevant to your audience on your blog.
And the benefits of business blogging are immense too:
Send a Regular Email Newsletter
Email is a fantastic channel to strengthen new prospect relationships. It allows you to stay in touch with them and provide them with a value before they even hire your MSP.
Here are a couple of email newsletter strategies you could use:
- Notify your prospects of every new content you publish.
- Send them big company announcements.
- Share regular tips and resources.
- Curate relevant content.
Finally, speak in front of your potential customers, whenever you get a chance. You don’t have to go to major events. Even a small lunch talk at the Chamber of Commerce or another local business organization might be enough to position you as an IT expert in your industry.
#4. Always Provide a Guarantee
Stacy Karacostas wrote this on StartupNation:
“Most small business owners—especially service providers—are terrified of offering guarantees. But they can be a great way to set you apart, and at the same time make prospects more confident about doing business with you.”
And I couldn’t agree more.
Guarantees give you a true edge over other, similar businesses, and also, help overcome your prospects sales objections.
Geeks123.com have created a dedicated page on their site listing their guarantees.
Parkway Tech guarantees a response time, and promise to return the payment for the month’s service should they fail to deliver on their promise.
#5. Deliver Value in Initial Communications
When a new prospect reaches out for a quote, you can do two things:
- Answer their questions, or
- Be proactive by delivering value before they’ve even had a chance to do business with you.
And let me clear here – both of these options work. However, only one of them can make a prospect excited about your company.
I’m sure you already know which one that is.
By delivering value first, you make a lasting first impression about your business, one of a proactive company that’s not afraid to invest time and resourced in their clients.
- Make a list of questions that touch on things they should be aware of, and that would make them think of you as an expert in the field. (example question: What would happen if one of your employees accidentally clicked on a link in a suspicious email? )
- Send them initial report or a list of potential issues you’ve already identified (but don’t sound like you’re trying to scare them off. Rather, help them realize the holes your service could help them pluck)
And that’s it
Now you know the 5-step process to ensure that your target clients will always think of your MSP first.
What’s left is to implement those steps into your business and start reaping the rewards.
Sign up below to receive our monthly IT Services advice + other cool stuff straight to your inbox.