As CEO of Computer Solutions Group, I've worked with like-minded managed services providers (MSPs) from around the country to share marketing strategies and success stories.
When it comes to bridging the gap between marketing and sales, the MSPs I've partnered with consistently express some of the same challenges to closing new leads – specifically around email marketing. So, to help you find success and grow your business, here are some tips you can use to strengthen your email marketing strategy.
The Deep-Rooted Issue in MSP Email Marketing
Email marketing boasts the highest ROI of any marketing channel. However, if you're like many MSPs, your business likely doesn't mimic this statistic.
The issue is simple: MSPs struggle to identify who they're marketing to. They blast generic emails to clients and prospects without considering where they are in the marketing funnel, their role at the company and other critical identifiers.
The result from these canned campaigns and impersonal messaging is unsurprisingly lackluster. There is a better way to approach email marketing for your MSP business, though.
Understanding Motivations and Creating Buyer Personas
If people receive messages that don't pertain to their unique situation, they'll ignore them or unsubscribe from the list. You need to understand the motivations that drive your prospects, and one way to do this is to create buyer personas.
A buyer persona acts as a representative example of a particular person within your ideal customer segments. Some essential buyer persona criteria include:
- Job Role
- Basic Demographic Information
- Problems or Pain Points
The Importance of Segmentation
Segmentation allows you to deliver targeted messages to specific groups, like the ones you created with your buyer personas. Tools such as HubSpot can help you qualify and categorize leads into distinct pools.
For example, you can separate prospects by their job roles or landing pages they’ve visited, and target them with unique messaging. However, it’s important not to go overboard with the number of segments you create. You don't want to stretch your resources so thin that you can't build strong campaigns for each group. Scale up gradually as you find success with your initial efforts.
Consistency Is Key
We all know that the managed IT services business is time-sensitive. It's difficult to predict exactly when something will break or when certain services will be needed. Since you can't know when potential clients might run into a technology problem or need your assistance, the next best thing to do is to email them consistently to stay on their radar.
I’d recommend a once-a-week schedule as the bare minimum frequency for your email marketing campaigns. However, you know your audience best, so feel free to experiment with frequency to strike the right balance for your clients and prospects. But remember: keep it consistent.
Deliver Value with Every Email
You can't email a lead for no reason. Therefore, you need to provide real value with every email you send. This could be in the form of resources to help companies prevent costly cyber attacks or educate them on the state of the IT industry. Think of yourself as a trusted business adviser. When you act as their go-to source for information, they'll trust you to know what you're doing when the time comes to purchase.
The most important thing for MSPs to keep in mind with email marketing is to be patient. You have no way of controlling when someone will need your services, but you can make sure that you stay top of mind. Be helpful, prompt and available, and you'll put your company in a position to succeed.
By Courtney Swift
By Scott Wittstock