Effective IT Marketing Incorporates Prior Planning

Don’t Reinvent the Wheel

IT marketingIT marketing is in a strange place. On one hand, it is in continual flux. As technology changes human interaction, new forms of advertisement are necessary to reach target markets. But these new forms of advertisement almost always incorporate older, proven techniques. Its wheels within wheels when you get right down to it. They’re just put to increasingly complex and specific use.

Several areas of approach that will define successful sales include:

  • Approaching negotiations as a listener
  • A straight-to-business approach
  • Establishing a target beforehand (go in knowing what you want)
  • Getting a secondary sales alternative in place if primary efforts fail

Listening

When your marketing representatives are working to secure a sale, the most important thing they can do is to listen. Many in a position of negotiation fail to listen. Instead, they’ll think about their interests and bowl right over the client’s reasonable points of objection. While it’s very important to know what you’re aiming for, you can’t fail to be at the moment. As an MSP, you need to find salespeople who can apply strategy to their approach and move with the moment simultaneously to secure the most optimum outcome. This means listening and reading between the lines to see what is really causing the client to reject a prospective proposal.

A Straight-To-Business Approach

IT marketing needs to jump in the water all at once, not tiptoe in gradually. Here’s the thing: niceties can go on perpetually. Your clients likely have a busy day ahead, and probably don’t want to spend any money. Though they’re looking for a solution, they’re also looking for a reason not to spend more. You need to understand the psychology of this to push through the barrier with as much professional swiftness as possible.

What this often means is condensing a pitch to a few sentences with staggering implications. For example, if you know your client’s ballpark when it comes to a yearly budget, you can construct an IT solution with a cost-benefit projection that demonstrates possible profit. Consider this opener: “Play your cards right, and our services can bring in $20k a year after IT expenses; it’s all in the collateral.”

There are a number of clients in the SMB range to whom MSPs could make such a claim. Providing cloud computing support and systematically curtailing infrastructural redundancy, while expanding backup redundancy, can cut operational costs while eliminating downtime losses over time. When clients ask how such savings are attained, the salesperson can ask for yearly downtime numbers, and point to a cloud model to reduce those numbers. Then they can do the same with app-related infrastructural replacement solutions. Now the client is hooked. But again, don’t get carried away by your pitch and forget to listen.

Go In Knowing Your Target

If you’re selling a car for a target of $10k, you’re going to list that car around $13k and allow prospective buyers to talk you down. It’s the same with IT services. Construct packages that include a few services that, though helpful to operations, can be cut from a contract to reduce recurring charges. Go in with some negotiable aces up your sleeve to overcome any client price objections. Above all, establish your target beforehand.

A Secondary or Alternative Solution

If the negotiated agreement you intended on doesn’t go through as you had intended, you want a secondary sale to fall back on. This way even if the sale you intended isn’t secured, a sale is still made. Find a fundamentally necessary secondary service for kind of clients you’re pursuing. Security, storage, BDR – you can likely find something you do better than competitors, and which your clients will need. This can act sort of like a doorstop.

Through experience, Technology Resource Advisors have seen that a strategic approach in negotiations increases the likelihood of conversion. The truth is, many of the clients you’ve targeted a have a legitimate need for your services. If you’ve got a client hooked on a minimal IT service, it opens the door for future IT marketing efforts in the future.

Jason Schmitt

Jason Schmitt

Jason Schmitt, founder and CEO of Technology Resource Advisors, Inc., graduated Summa Cum Laude from Bradley University in 1995 with a degree in Business Management. His IT industry experience includes 20+ years in Milwaukee tech support a consultative role for Private and Public sector clients. Always in search of ways to improve the client's IT Support experience in Milwaukee, Jason is active in several industry managed IT services Milwaukee groups in and IT Services Milwaukee business peer groups. Jason is responsible for Vision, Strategy, and Market Development at Technology Resource Advisors, Inc.