Are you looking for the best ways to market and promote your MSP business? Wanna know what the most effective ways of attracting new customers are? New and already established MSPs must answer these questions with confidence in order to scale their business.
The best ways to market your MSP business in 2021 are:
- Social Media
- Cold Calling
- Attending Conferences and Networking
- Email Marketing
- Social Proof
- Utilizing the Video
- Client Testimonials
- Select a Niche
- Content Marketing
- Pay-Per Click Marketing (PPC)
- Reviews and Referrals
Five years and 50+ clients later, we at Support Adventure share with you in this article our marketing knowledge for acquiring new customers in the MSP space.
How to Stand Out in the MSP Market
Nowadays, a company’s image starts with their website, hence it needs to be different and unique. Sadly, so many MSPs have very similar websites with a redundant design. Nothing stands out and you can barely understand their offering regarding:
- Core values
- Promise to the clients
- Brand identity
So how can an MSP be unique in their market if they don’t know their core values and promises yet? The best approach would be to have an open discussion with your best client. Ask them what they really appreciate in your company and service.
For instance, if customers value the attention that you give, your business continuity and security, then you can market these elements as your main promises.
Customers appreciate when a company makes them feel good and feel like they are in the right place. Ultimately, you want to focus on these elements and needs when you build up your marketing strategy.
Many MSPs also repurpose the same content everyone else is using. Either that or they order content from some creators and just put their logo on it. Your business must instead focus on what matters to your clients and how you make them feel. You should utilize the feedback customers submit so that when they visit your website, it feels like the perfect place for them and only them.
The Importance of Having Testimonials on Your Website
Testimonials are so vital for conversions in a business. They help potential clients decide to work with your company. If an MSP doesn’t have testimonials on their website, people may not have enough faith in their service and look for another provider.
However, some companies might have a valid argument to not publish testimonials for security reasons. They assume that cybercriminals might do some harm to their clients. We agree that this is a valid concern, but it’s still a risk to leave money on the table without testimonials.
If a company has four or five amazing testimonials from trustworthy people on the homepage, the chance of getting a new customer rises significantly as it creates more confidence in the service.
Hence an MSP absolutely must have testimonials in 2021. They can be in various formats such as:
We believe the latter works the best. In this day and age, video is one of the most powerful ways to share any message online.
Content Marketing is One of the Best Promotion Strategies
We now live in a digital world and consume online content daily. This means that businesses no longer have to print billboards and flyers to promote themselves, they can spread the word on the web instead.
Your MSP should optimize the use of existing social media platforms to draw clients in and implement content marketing strategies. You can create written, audio or video content in your niche. Blogs, podcasts and YouTube channels are especially popular and effective ways to spread the word across the globe.
Take Advantage of Video
If an MSP isn’t utilizing video as a marketing strategy right now, they’re way behind their premium competitors. Actually, make that years behind. People consume millions of hours of Youtube videos every single day. Your MSP must be on this platform, serving its audience, some of whom eventually turn into clients.
As the saying goes, “content is king,” and video is an absolute winner for any business. Of course, your video marketing efforts should focus on your targeted market. It must address their urgent needs and pain points. This can include:
- Cost savings
- Employee productivity
You can create content educating prospects on operations optimization, IT infrastructure, scaling and the best industry practices in your field. You will ultimately create an engaged audience, some of whom will go on to become a client of yours.
If content marketing is not your jam, then Youtube ads are another opportunity for MSPs to market themselves. You can place advertisements on selected videos in your niche or other related videos. Few companies are doing this, so this is a big opportunity to get a leg up over your competitors.
An old advertising model is to plug your business next to adverts for IBM, DELL, Microsoft, etc. But the biggest benefit of video advertising today on social media is that you can target particular demographics, locations and keywords.
You can also select videos that might interest your audience and start promoting your services. In the advertising promo, you must start with a well-defined hook and pitch the offering within 30 seconds.
People will get a sense of who you are and what your company stands for. Video is so powerful in giving people the opportunity to get to know the promise of your business instantly. It’s an excellent way to build a connection without direct communication.
Why Social Proof Is Great for MSP Marketing?
Similar to testimonials, social proof is another powerful way to display authority instantly. However, most service providers don’t even have an adequate amount of social proof and social presence. The most common excuse is lack of time for such “unnecessary” tasks. Nonetheless, social proof affects a prospect’s decisions in a great way. Social proof is extremely important to:
- Establish credibility instantly when someone is just learning about you for the first time.
- Validate your customers’ buying decisions.
- Come across as a thought leader in your industry.
Social proof sends potential clients powerful emotional triggers that significantly influence them to have a positive response to your company. It also helps them feel confident in their decision to work with you. Racking up reviews, comments, likes and shares for your business helps your service appear more reputable.
Social proof can as well validate important claims about your service, while also justifying your pricing, especially for premium providers. By the way, if you want to become a premium MSP, read this article.
What should you do if you don’t have any social proof? No worries, it can be gathered by:
- Asking for customer reviews and testimonials
- Mentioning your clients and collaborations in your social media posts
- Highlighting awards you’ve won on your website and social media
- Getting testimonials from experts in your industry
- Getting verified on the social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram
- Collecting valuable backlinks to your website
- Getting featured on revered sites and social media accounts
- Using LinkedIn recommendations to build authority
Niche Down as an MSP
Being a generalist isn’t always the best solution. Selecting a narrow niche however will help MSPs market themselves more effectively. Your niche could be a specific location, demographic, industry or even sub-industry.
The niche approach can be the targeting of one main industry or selecting several ones and nailing them all down. An MSP can also have a specialty in two or three areas.
You could also narrow down your business to a particular location and serve all the industries in that particular city or district. The main idea is to become well known for something specific and make it excellent. Everyone will then know you as the go-to person for that.
In your selected niche, you should certainly know all the players and terminology in order to become an expert.
Keep in mind though that every business and industry is different. You will need to educate your MSP staff and learn new technologies or skills if necessary. Consequently, a selling and marketing approach is unique for any niche. You must have something very specific about your offering too.
It’s also easier to get leads through referrals by being an insider in one industry or area. Companies will recommend your service to their partners and peers in the same field.
Attend Conferences and Networking Events in Your MSP’s Niche
A more personal and intimate marketing strategy for an MSP would be to go to networking events and attend conferences. It’s a key approach to establish awareness and gain exposure from those who are in the same industry as you. The more you interact with people, the more likely your company’s name will spread.
During these events, you have an opportunity to talk directly to potential prospects and present your solutions. Personal interactions are very powerful, especially if you are an empathic type, a good seller or have a solid representative.
You can receive a significant amount of leads with some good old fashioned, face-to-face communication. Some businesses rely solely on events and networking as their main marketing channel to drive their sales, so test it out to see if it might be your bread and butter.
Many MSPs spend thousands of dollars a year on going to every single MSP conference or event. Instead, they should visit those in their particular industry, niche or area. The main idea is to meet people who are in your target market.
Build a Referral Culture in Your MSP
Referrals are a great way to drive sales for MSPs, especially because many of them are targeting particular areas or industries. Thus, word of mouth can do a pretty good job.
If your MSP doesn’t have a strong referral culture yet, there are some ways to establish one. By far the best solution is to provide a unique and memorable service.
The best referrals are from people who will automatically recommend your company if you deliver on your promises. An MSP typically doesn’t even have to ask for a referral from such a client.
It’s also a powerful practice to give a discount to people referred to you or to the client who has recommended your company. Alternative to discounts, MSP can give some presents or coupons to its customers. That way, they can create memories and tell others about it.
Discounts won’t be remembered the same way as experiences though, so you must create an experience so positive for your clients that they will never forget it. Your MSP will be in their minds for a long time and the chance of them referring others to your MSP increases greatly.
The Best FREE Platform for B2B Advertising for an MSP
What is the best B2B strategy that MSPs can use to advertise their services? That would be search engine optimization, aka SEO.
SEO is the most effective way to get eyes on your business for free. Your company will be discovered on Google easily when you understand how to make it show up as a top result. For many MSPs, well-qualified leads fall into their laps this way.
So how can you show up in search results without using paid ads? You can use blog posts or even just normal pages on your website can be optimized to perform well in Google. You should hire content creators to write useful articles for your target customers and make sure they are optimized. In order for visitors to convert into leads and sales, make sure that your website has clear calls to action.
There are also websites that aggregate lists such as the Top 60 MSP Blogs page where you can add your MSP and improve your SEO Authority and gain exposure from new channels.
LinkedIn is by far the best B2B advertising platform out there. It’s a powerful tool for collecting and communicating with prospects as an MSP. You can approach people in your industry via direct message.
If you want to build a more intimate rapport with your target customers, social media is the most powerful way to do just that. As we stated above, we would recommend YouTube above all. But that’s just our personal preference. Do whatever suits your personality the most.
Persistence is the key to marketing your business in 2021. The market is competitive and everyone wants a piece of it. Not everyone can hold on for long and people tend to give up.
Don’t give up. If your MSP enters a prospect’s mind in the right way, make sure you stay there and keep reminding them about you. They will eventually come around for you to close the deal, so just stay persistent with your message and values.
Yes, it might take a long time to sign a client, whether days, weeks, months or even years. But you should let the prospect build trust with your business and provide valuable information in the meantime.