Use All the Tools Available
An MSP company needs to use what it can to remain viable. If you provide cloud computing support, you should also factor such support into your general operations. In what ways can your company benefit from using solutions like the cloud?
An area where many MSPs could substantially maximize operations, but often fail to, is personnel. Your technicians need to have sales training experience, and oftentimes, they don’t. One big reason they aren’t often properly trained is because many MSPs don’t feel technicians need to be skilled in closing sales. However, this ultimately means many opportunities to secure or up-sell clients will be missed.
Oftentimes, a client needs some service or product your MSP offers and the tech is aware of it. But without sales training, they’re unable to properly convey the necessity of that product or service, and so the client has no impetus to buy it. This is just one of many situations where a little bit of sales acumen could have made a large sale. All that being said, if you’re going to have your tech people trained in sales, there are several tools you want to equip them with:
- Proper incentives
- Contact with experienced salespeople
- The “eat and learn” approach
- Formalized training
You need to give your techs financial data pertaining to clients. Additionally, you need to train them to parse such data in order that gaps may be identified where a certain MSP service could assist. Optimization has an initial cost involved, but where the benefit comes is in savings down the line. If your MSP company gives technicians the information they require to close a sale, and to identify where a pitch is possible, they will likely increase regular revenue.
You need to reward your salespeople. This isn’t just a tool for you to drive them onward; it’s also a tool for your technicians to motivate themselves. It’s one of those win-win scenarios, ultimately. But you’ve got to be forthright with your incentives, and they have to be qualitative enough that techs are driven to push beyond their traditional comfort levels.
Get your tech people around a serious sales department. If you know some salespeople, arrange a luncheon or something of the kind. If you’ve been outsourcing your marketing, perhaps have your sales people learn from that division of operations. The key is you want your employees to get an idea of proper selling technique which doesn’t require purely abstract consideration. Selling in the abstract is daunting. Selling in person can be fun. Salespeople can teach this reality to technicians and you may find someone on your engineering staff turns out to be a surprisingly good salesman.
One popular strategy for client acquisition involves having a technician give a presentation to key clientele while they have lunch. You might even pay for the lunch— make it a pizza party kind of thing or order one of those massive submarine sandwiches. Just cater to your client’s preferences, whatever you do.
When a technician gives a presentation pertaining to technology they’re passionate about, fully understand, and can even configure, there is much more authenticity than in a traditional sales pitch. Here, you can play to your tech’s strength. If they aren’t necessarily eloquent of speech, this is no big deal; prospective clients won’t realize they’re being pitched on your services, or if they do, it won’t be quite as obvious, anyway.
This can be expensive and it can limit the strength of your tech team, depending on how you go about it. Ideally, you want to have techs go to such training when there are statistically low areas of service need. Certainly, some MSPs can’t afford such solutions, but if you can, this is an investment that will very likely pay off.
Technicians who sell are very advantageous. When your MSP company has technicians who are/have:
- Equipped with some level of training
- Experience with actual sales professionals
- The requisite information to entice a client
- Opportunities like eat and learn events
…you will have properly equipped your employees. These are just some of the advantages sales training can offer.