Your MSP sales team is probably mainly concerned with finding new clients since a company lives and dies on its ability to make sales. However, you don’t want to rest on your laurels and take your current customer base for granted. There are always new and emerging companies and many will be in exactly the same sector as you. New MSPs will be looking for precisely the same clients as you already serve, and the odds are high that some of your customers will be approached to change their allegiance and go with the new kids on the block.
So, how do you protect yourself and guarantee that your customers won’t jump ship and go somewhere else for their IT needs? It isn’t a total guarantee, of course, but if you try to understand your clients and their needs and anticipate the approach of your competitors, you may have a better chance of keeping your customer base to yourself.
Keep in Touch
When someone has bought a contract for one of your products, you might be tempted to only reach out to them on the anniversary of the contract in order to persuade them to sign up for another year. If that is the case, there are a lot of opportunities for a competitor to sneak in and show them that their product is superior in the meantime. If you have been keeping in contact throughout that year, whether it is just to touch base or to be more useful and suggest articles or information that you have found that could be of interest to them, you will be in the forefront of their minds. If you can help the client without letting it be all about extracting money from them, they are more likely to see you as a genuine business with an interest in their success, making them more likely to want to renew their allegiance with you instead of a largely unknown competitor.
Subtly Extract Information
If your MSP sales team is already keeping in contact with your clients, it’s possible to ask them to let you know if they are approached by another company. Familiarity with you means that this is more likely to be seen as an informal request, but in reality, knowing how a company is approaching them and how they are selling themselves is fantastic information for you. It means that you can show your client exactly why and how you are better than the opposition and how reckless it would be of them to change something that is working successfully.
If all of the above points are followed, you are in a better position to keep competitors at bay, but you should also be prepared for a pitch to your customers about undercutting your prices. If you have maintained good communication with your clients and have become someone they can rely on who will answer questions and have their best interests at heart, you stand a better chance of keeping them as customers. You may need to lower your own prices in order to be seen as competitive, but the connection you have with clients can work toward helping them understand that they aren’t just paying for a product when they buy from you; they are also getting a service. This should go a long way toward proving to them that staying with you is a much better business decision than leaving to go with someone else just because their prices are low. You will be giving them added value, showing that this is all part of their contract with you, which is something that is uncharted with the largely unknown competitor.
For your MSP sales team to succeed in this endeavor, it needs to hold on to your customers by being the best alternative and fulfilling their needs. As long as your team is trying to serve customers rather than worrying about the newcomers who are trying to steal their customers, they have a much better chance of keeping them close and retaining their business. Look after your clients, and they will look after you.