Each industry has their own leaders and businesses that stand out from the pack. As businesses continue to struggle with the results of the recession, providing quality service and support alone may not be enough to secure future business. Your potential clients are looking for the best in the business, specifically – a Managed Services Provider that not only has expertise within the industry, but also the ability to bring something unique to the client's company – business acumen. At a time when many IT providers are trying to recover from clients that have gone out of business with few new customers on the books to replace that business, now is the time to focus on how you will attract and retain new business in the future.
Think Outside The MSP Box
As with all other industries, it is important that you stay on top of what is going on in the industry and with your competitors. While it is important to network with other MSPs and VARs to learn what is new in the industry and build important business relationships – it is equally important to network outside of the MSP industry. You know your business, now you have to learn about the businesses you will provide services for in the future. Visit your local chamber of commerce and attend events outside of the industry to see what small business owners are looking for from their perspective. By thinking outside the MSP box you open yourself to new ideas and issues that your company can address, setting you apart from other MSPs who focus solely within their own comfort zone.
Give Your Clients What They Need
All businesses need to meet the needs of their clients, however when it comes to technology it is often more important how you present your services versus the actual services. For example, your client may want to understand the technology, but in reality they know they have neither the time or energy to devote to learning that technology. That is why they are considering your services. Your clients will more than likely want information about the products you will be using, however it is important to focus their attention on the services you will provide and how these will benefit their business. Remember to focus your conversations on business outcomes your services can provide your clients such as cost savings, increased sales and risk reduction, differentiating yourself from other providers focused on only incident or project outcomes. Clients are willing to pay for these benefits, therefore understanding and meeting their needs will set you apart from other providers that might be focused strongly on selling products through transactional relationships, or break-fix services, rather than meeting the unique business needs of each client.
Measure Your Progress
Once you have sold your services to a client, it is important to constantly monitor your progress and client feedback to ensure their changing needs are met. They are trusting you to make sure they have the services needed to keep their business running smoothly. By offering personalized service at the startand maintaining a constant vigil to ensure your services are the best in the business, you are providing the ultimate MSP experience for your clients.