What are the Common Mistakes to Avoid When Marketing your MSP?

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MSP marketingWhat is the biggest growth challenge most IT Solution Providers or Managed Service Providers (MSP) have? Marketing their MSP.

In fact, when I ask most owners what marketing they do to get in front of new clients, they usually say two things. “None” or “A little bit, but it isn’t working”.

So let me ask you now, why are your marketing efforts failing?

There could be number of reasons, some of which I list below as common mistakes you need to avoid when marketing you’re MSP.

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Relying on Word of Mouth as an MSP Marketing Method

If your answer is “I’m relying only on word of mouth,” understand that waiting for referrals from existing clients is not a marketing strategy.

Referrals can certainly play an important part in the growth of any MSP, but even when you’re actively seeking referrals, they generate some new business, not all. And 99% of MSP’s never actually ask for referrals, they just wait for them to happen.

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Only Doing Social Media and Business Networking

Social media and ttending business networking events are great ways of starting conversations, meeting new people and bringing yourself to the attention of potential new clients.

They should both be a part of any MSP marketing activity plan – but relying on these methods alone will make acquiring new clients a (painfully) slow process.

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Saying “We’ve tried marketing and it doesn’t work for us!”

If you say “We’ve tried direct mail/telemarketing and it doesn’t work for us” or “We’ve tried marketing and it doesn’t work for us”, I do understand.

If you’re not convinced about MSP marketing, have a listen to this interview with Paul Green, of MSP Marketing Edge, to learn more about why it matters!

As a former MSP owner myself, I know that juggling the day-to-day responsibilities of running a business can leave very little time to actually “do” marketing.

Often though (invariably when we’re becoming desperate to find new clients) you place a focus on “doing” marketing:

  • Make telephone calls
  • Send out some email newsletters
  • Post some direct mail

And disappointingly you hardly get a response. Frustrating, isn’t it?

If you’ve been down this road and find this story familiar, then I’d like to share one important idea. It might just change your outlook on what marketing is and how it can work for you.

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MSP Marketing is a System, not an Event

Marketing is a system, not an event. You need to be marketing consistently as part of a structured and thought out plan, not just doing marketing when the mood takes you.

Marketing is a system, not an event. You need to be marketing consistently as part of a structured and thought out plan, not just doing marketing when the mood takes you. Click to Tweet

If you aren’t consistently undertaking marketing activities, then you won’t consistently attract new prospects who might become clients.

Maybe you “do” marketing when your existing pipeline is empty – or worse, when the company coffers are empty and you’re desperate for new clients and fresh income.

The results of this flurry of marketing is unlikely to generate new business for you in the short term.

They sometimes come later, and often only after you’ve done other marketing activities that complement your original activity.

For instance, sending out a mailshot alone is unlikely to win you many new clients. Creating and distributing a batch of direct mail letters in isolation won’t usually produce any leads.

Making sales calls alone is not only painful for most of us in business and it rarely yields instant results.

BUT a targeted campaign of email shots, direct mail and sales calls all undertaken as part of a mixture of activities – executed well and consistently will result in new business.

If you are in need of some tips on how to market your MSP watch my recent webinar hosted with Kaseya, Marketing Tips for MSPs.

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“I Don’t Have the Time to do MSP Marketing!”

If you understand that your MSP marketing activities need a strategic plan consistently executed, then you may realise that all of this takes time and effort.

Let's be honest here, if growing your MSP business is really important to you then you'll make the time to market your business. Click to Tweet

Let’s be honest here, if growing your MSP business is really important, you’ll make the time to market your business. Spending just 30 minutes a day on marketing activities can yield great results. And if you commit to doing this, I suggest doing it first every day.

Focus on these business development activities before you get distracted by emails or the demands of clients. To get started, watch the MSP Webinar – 3 Steps to Sales and Marketing Success.

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Conclusion

Relying on word-of-mouth and waiting for referrals to grow your IT business is not how to do MSP marketing!

In isolation, undertaking social media, networking, direct mail, telemarketing or any other marketing activity is not enough,. It won’t generate the number of new leads you need to grow your MSP properly.

Yet planning  a mixture of these activities and consistently executing upon those plans in a joined-up and thought out way will produce a steady stream of new clients for your IT business.

Make sure that your MSP marketing is a system, not an event.

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