Strategy around security is a two-step process. The first is to embrace security and all of the solutions that an MSP is needing to offer to their clients, internally in their own echo system. That is crucial, as what I learned in my MSP from the implementation and use of different solutions enabled me to properly price and position it in my offering.
Step 1: Ask the Right Questions
I think one of the mistakes we make in the MSP community is to hear about a great product that other MSPs are using, get the vendor on the phone to understand pricing, take a tour of the portal and in the essence of time, start selling that solution—especially if we have a client that has a time-sensitive need for that solution. But what I found over time is that this is inefficient and it creates a piece-meal approach to a security offering. When I slowed down and implemented the product on my own network, compared it to more solutions and then fit it into a proper tier (basic or advanced), I was able really work through the solution with my team and get total buy-in.
Is this a product that will make sense in the long run, or is it a bandaid? How difficult is it to use? What is the vendor support like? Is the portal easy to use and able to integrate with existing portals and tools we use? Does the pricing make sense?
Step 2: Master Your Approach
The second part of the strategy is to properly educate the clients around that product. It may be a good solution but they may not understand or agree that they need that solution. Getting the messaging out in a way that is relatable and “human” is key. The way I did that was to tell the story of why I saw a need for the solution (identify the gap) which included an experience of my own MSP or one of my clients.
Secondly, I told the story about what other products I looked at, and why I selected the one that made the most sense. I then included details of what our own team’s experience was in using the product (for example, 2FA added to our email and major applications). Finally, I gave the background on why the solution is being included as part of the base or advanced package, and what that means to the client.
When the Strategy Fits
I found that over time, this strategy worked best with my clients, as they understood my “why” and my “how” before they were presented with the “what.” This strategy allowed me to be in constant partnership with my clients and meant much less push-back, and also allowed me to pivot to new products within my security packages without a lot of disruption. Those conversations became easier to manage, as my clients expected me to be keeping up with the threats and to have their back.
To learn more about what it takes to offer your clients the right cybersecurity solution and effectively sell it, watch our on-demand webinar, How to Cross the Security Sell-Through Chasm!