“It just doesn’t seem to be worth the time it takes to do it.” This is the comment that seems to arise more than any other when talking to IT service providers about their marketing strategy. For many, this might be true. But for those who are marketing the right way, those who are honing in on the audience that they want to connect with, the return on time and money spent on marketing is massive.
So how do you market “the right way?” It starts with identifying whom you are trying to reach. If you’re a Managed Services Provider (MSP) that services small and medium businesses in Florida, you’re not going to have much use for a slew of marketing-generated connections in California. You need to appeal to your desired audience.
I recently had the opportunity to chat with an MSP whose business was heavily centered on his backup and disaster recovery (BDR) offering. This MSP was located in an area of the country where earthquakes were very common and very disruptive to local businesses. Because of this, many of the MSP’s clients wanted their data stored off site. This is a HUGE opportunity to use targeted marketing to connect with a very specific audience. Content that highlights the damage caused by earthquakes in that specific area each year will resonate with the business owners that fit the description of this MSP’s client base.
This isn’t to suggest that you need to be doing research and writing statistic-filled articles just to try to grab the attention of prospects in your area. If you’re like most, you simply don’t have the time for that. Chances are, those articles have already been written. Tapping into local publications that cover news topical to your client base will help bring the right leads in the door. Share third-party content that you know will appeal to businesses in your area. Leverage content that already exists so that you don’t have to spend the extra time creating it. The original publications will be happy that you’re sharing their links and will often reciprocate, and the businesses in your area will be happy that you’re providing them with a path to good, relevant content.
Don’t let your targeted marketing end with location. After you ask yourself where, ask yourself who? Identify the verticals that you are serving and look for content that appeals to them. Perhaps your client base is primarily made up of healthcare providers. Share content that talks about HIPAA compliance or examples of data breaches in the healthcare industry. If you can combine the two and share content that talks about healthcare in your area of service, even better!
If you’re not taking the time to identify and market to the businesses that you’re trying to connect with, its going to be that much harder to see a significant return on your marketing efforts. Don’t make things harder on yourself. Take advantage of the content that is out there and use targeted inbound marketing to grow your client base and grow your business.
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By Brandon Garcin
By Gretchen Hoffman