Three Steps to a Killer MSP Marketing Framework
The changing business landscape is creating impressive growth in the MSP industry—by 2025 the global managed services market is expected to grow to $329.1 billion, at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 8.1% between 2020 and 2025.
With service in such high demand, competition is stiff as more providers flood the market, and MSPs looking to gain an edge are focusing on marketing and messaging that speaks to the unique needs of their target audience. But before you can start thinking about marketing your MSP, you need to clearly identify your goals, your target customer and your value propositions.
Whether you are just starting out or want to launch a new service, follow these steps to create a solid marketing framework.
Step One: Defining Yourself
When building a marketing plan, you need to define the ultimate business goals of your MSP. What are you good at? What will your service offerings be? Will you be focusing on specific industry verticals? Without addressing some basic questions about your business, it’s impossible to create marketing messaging that speaks to your value or proves your expertise to potential customers. Ask these questions about your MSP to help focus and define how you want to present your company to your target customers.
Whose needs do you address better: SMBs or Enterprise organizations?
The needs of small and medium-sized businesses can be much different than those of larger organizations in terms of pain points and value proposition. Marketing messaging that works for small and mid-size businesses without a current IT department might miss the mark with larger organizations that have a full tech staff. That’s why it’s important to first identify the type of organization your will target.
Do you plan to service a metro area, state, region, country or go international?
The move to work from anywhere means MSPs can expand their market are more easily than ever. More organizations are making mostly- or fully-remote permanent for employees, which means an MSP in Chicago can have customers from New York to Australia. You market area will influence both how you attract prospects and what you say to them.
Verticals and Specialties
Does your MSP have compliance or other specialty certifications?
Specializing in an industry can help an MSP better understand what tech stack they need to know—medical and other nice industries often have vastly different support, technology and compliance needs.
Step Two: Defining Your Customer
When you’re developing a marketing strategy, it’s important to identify the type of customer you want to attract. Are you going after SMBs or enterprise organizations? Will you be focusing on industry verticals? This target buyer is known as your ideal customer profile (ICP). Think of your ICP as your customer wish list—in a perfect world all of your customers would be a perfect fit for your solution, and that’s what your ICP represents. Defining your ideal customer allows you to be laser-focused on marketing and selling to targeted accounts that are a great fit for your MSP.
Here are a few things to consider when defining your ICP:
- Company size
- Company budget or revenue
- Technology stack
- Geography or location
Step Three: Defining Your Value
When it comes to defining your value, and then showing that value to your customers, it all comes down to product marketing. Product marketing has four main components:
- Understanding the market, your customers and your product
- Taking a product to market
- Enabling your internal teams
- Optimizing product adoption
As an MSP, you need to figure out what your customers’ needs are (pain points, compliance requirements, etc.), and then marry that with your service offerings to create solutions that solve for those pain points. You figured out pain points in Step Two, now you need to identify the right service offerings for each customer type.
You should view things from your customer’s lens, always. For instance, if you tell them that you understand their frustration with setting up the right IT access for onboarding new employees, and then explain how your services solve that problem, you have a much better chance of them understanding the value your MSP brings to the table.
Build Your Buyer Personas
Buyer personas are representations, or stories, you create based on the goals, motivations, and challenges of your identified customers. Your personas should be based on the types of buyers you will encounter in the sales cycle.
Make sure to include these essential elements in your buyer personas:
- Job Title
- Pain Points/Major Concern
- How Your MSP is a Solution
- 1-Sentence Value Statement
- Customer Example/Success Story
Power Your Marketing Plan with Data
MSP marketing starts with understanding your customers and their needs. Liongard helps you gather insights about your clients you can use to demonstrate your value and differentiate yourself from competitors at every stage of the buyer journey. A personalized customer experience, from prospect to onboarding and beyond, is crucial to developing a partnership with your customers that enables you to go from vendor to strategic partner.
Discover how Liongard can support your MSP marketing strategy. Schedule a demo today for a custom walk-through of our platform.
This guest blog is courtesy of Liongard. Read more Liongard guest blogs here. Regularly contributed guest blogs are part of ChannelE2E’s sponsorship program.