August 29, 2022 - The Managed Service Provider (MSP) industry has gained a stronghold as more companies outsource their IT functions and use MSPs to scale business. The managed services market hit a value of around $186 billion in 2019, with forecasts suggesting this number could grow to $356.24 billion by 2025. With demand for MSPs continuing to spike long past growth driven by the COVID-19 pandemic, how do you make sure prospective customers know you are out there and how can you scale your services?
MSPs are mostly marketed like any other service business, using traditional marketing efforts like lead generation, email marketing and social media advertising. But, MSPs also uniquely need specialized marketing strategies to capture the right audiences and generate the maximum return from lead generation.
MSPs are providing services that involve safeguarding critical business data, devices, and applications, so building trust among prospective customers is key. As high-profile data breaches continue to make news, companies remain very concerned about reputational damage and compliance breaches. This makes trusting a service provider vital, and earning that trust must be an important part of an MSP’s marketing strategy.
Good marketing tells customers what services are offered, but also reinforces why a particular MSP can be trusted. This presents MSPs with the challenge of not only selling potential customers on the benefits of their services, but also of inspiring confidence and differentiating their brands in an increasingly competitive field.
Covering the Basics
Most marketing experts will agree that any marketing strategy, regardless of product or service, will include basic components. For MPS marketing, those common basics are as follows:
- Inbound Marketing – This involves the creation of engaging and informative content that can be promoted across various digital channels to generate new leads. Content should always resonate with targeted audiences and point out how their common problems, issues and worries can be solved.
- Outbound Marketing – This marketing category includes traditional platforms and methods like TV commercials and cold calling and is targeted to all audiences, regardless of whether they are a sure lead.
- Email Marketing – Every MSP marketing strategy should include solid email marketing that includes key messages, promotions, and calls to action.
- Landing Page – This is a specific webpage built just for the purposes of marketing campaigns. Social media ads and content can link back to this site, and it is highly searchable on the internet. Spending time developing an easy to digest, compelling landing page is very important not only for promoting stand-out services, but building credibility.
Have a Plan
As competition heats up among MSPs and the fervor for outsourced IT services grows, understanding exactly who is being targeted and what prospective customers need is the backbone of an MSP marketing plan.
It is also key to understand the difference between marketing and sales. Marketing often does not involve actual sales. Marketing is building qualified leads. Each plan should start by asking the following questions:
- Who is the ideal customer? What are their key demographics and personas?
- What problems are ideal customers trying to manage or overcome? What are their most pressing issues?
- How do my MSP solutions match those problems? How do I help customers manage or erase their key issues?
- How should I reach my ideal customers? Do I have the budget and resources to execute on key marketing tactics?
- How is my MSP uniquely qualified to meet the needs of my ideal customer?
Essentials for Marketing MSPs
Instilling confidence in prospective customers and building fast credibility are two of the most important components of a strong MSP marketing plan. Marketing messages, materials and outreach should focus on helping customers understand the benefits of MSP services.
For MSPs, this means word-of-mouth referrals, customer testimonials, references and any industry accreditations. Content marketing is also key because potential customers often find and review multiple pieces of content on a business before reaching out for services. A variety of content, from basic guides to MSP services, to case studies on customer success stories, is a best practice that drives results.
More recently, beyond basic marketing tactics, such as Search Engine Optimization (SEO), social media and digital advertising, online reviews and email marketing, there are emerging marketing methods that should be added to an MSP’s plan.
Those methods include video marketing and hosting a podcast where prospective customers are interviewed. So-called break/fix services have also made a comeback and involve helping customers with one issue in order to gain a larger piece of their business.
Using a mixture of marketing tactics and covering basics, like LinkedIn marketing, create the surest results and best ROI.
Finding a Partner
Just as essential as creating and executing on a solid marketing plan tailored to MSPs is finding a partner that can ensure that an MSP can deliver on the services they are promising at scale.
Canopy, a remote device monitoring and management software platform has become a trusted, go-to resource for MSPs looking to grow business reach and revenue. Offered as a white-label service or add-value product, Canopy makes sure that all devices and applications can be centrally viewed, monitored and controlled.
Canopy can catch issues before your customers do, and send alerts and manage updates remotely. From mobile device management to hardware and equipment monitoring, Canopy can offer seamless service that increases an MSPs capabilities.
If you are growing your MSP business as you find more targeted prospects, we would love to offer a free demo of Canopy so you can see how you can grow.