The Smart Sales Rep’s Answer to the Objection: We Don’t Need Your MSP Offer…

November 3, 2017 — 2 Comments

Sales person standing at maze entrancePuzzled Over Long Drawn Out Sales Cycles and Margin Draining Discounts on MSP Sales?

When it comes to the age-old sales meeting question of “WHY should we change MSP providers?” and your sales cycle turns into a 6 month battle over a few dollars, don’t hate the prospect…or the competition. Instead, do this…

“Bridge the Marketing – Sales Gap…”

I get it. Your MSP offering is better, your people are more qualified, and as a result, your price is a little higher than the guy working out of his garage…but the client doesn’t see the difference.

Your prospect claims he can’t afford you…

At the end of the day money doesn’t matter as much as you think it does…

People buy expensive stuff (they can’t afford) every day.  They see a new car, drive it, dream about it, drool over it, and eventually buy it (no matter how deep in debt they are).  But there’s something more powerful than the desire for pleasure…

FEAR of [fill in the blank]…(Pain)…

Most MSP sales stall because there’s a gap in the lead generation to sales process (not because the price is too high). I call it The Marketing to Sales Conversion Gap. And it needs to be filled if you want to close the business…

The car salesperson does everything they can to get you into the leather seat of the new 7-Series BMW (with over 100 exterior paint colors to choose from)…

What does the MSP / IT Services provider do? Show some slides, explain the features, quote some prices…negotiate to beat the competition, till there’s no margin left.

In the end, it’s a deal not worth the time it took to sell it.

(Have you downloaded my free risk assessment template designed for MSP Conversion in the Small/Medium Business Market yet???)assessment report

How to Turn Your MSP Sales Calls into Fast Moving, High Margin Opportunities…

Years ago (my first real job out of college), I was assigned to work with PWC on a large bank automation project. Along the way dozens of change orders were made (project expansions for more money – generally high priced project creep)…spin off projects worth millions were common…

How did PWC do it? Too often the MSP sales process is one of bickering over a $5 dollar difference on price/workstation…

PWC leveraged one of three tools in almost every deal to avoid discounts and price pressure:

  1. Assessments,
  2. Studies
  3. Gap analysis…

Call it whatever you want…these tools work!

Today neuroscientists confirm the brain responds much faster (and more aggressively) to avoiding pain than it does to getting pleasure. The opportunity to buy the 7-Series may excite you, but the urgency of heart failure or cancer will trump the sports car every time…

Three Things You Can Start Doing Right Now To Create High Margin MSP Opportunities…Using Security

1). Start thinking “Security/Risk” when selling MSP.  MSP sales are either “price” sales or “risk” sales. Here’s what I mean…

If you go in with features and $/seat quotes, you’re selling on price. Managed anything is a commodity sale. Everyone manages their network – this is not new technology or a “paradigm shift” (in the words of Geoffrey Moore, author of Inside The Tornado)…so the buyer is left to compare your price to his budget.inside the tornado

The buyer will then list the pros and cons of competitive offers to decide which offer represents the best choice based on cost. It’s a simple cost/benefit analysis…generally the lowest price with the nicest looking website wins.  Winning on price means a big loss in margin.  Being the low cost bid leaves you with a contract you may not really want in the long run…

But why is the prospect considering MSP services in the first place? Isn’t it to maintain computer uptime, performance, backups, etc? All of these are security issues or Domains in the CISSP curriculum…(See ISC2.Org – 7 Pillars of Security).

It’s just that, MSP providers haven’t presented their offerings as such…stop selling the commodity…

Instead, do this...turn your MSP deal into a security sale.

Admit it, MSP is a commodity…

SECURITY (on the other hand) is not. But only a handful of MSP providers actually “do” and understand security…These third-party providers all say they manage firewalls, but do they protect data (the company’s most valuable assets)?

…In most cases, no. Of course you’ll have to demonstrate your capabilities if you want to win the business (keep reading)…

2). Move from “infrastructure management” to “data asset protection”. At the end of the day, the non-technical decision maker is far more interested in their data than they are their network, servers, and end-nodes.data

Data is the oil of the new millennium.

Data represents that company’s strategies, customers, their next major product announcement,…it’s currency even when it’s not actual money…

Stop talking hardware/software, start talking data value. Consider the following:

  • How long can your prospect live without data access?
  • How much data can they afford to lose on any given day?
  • What if their secrets are leaked or stolen by the competition?
  • What about foreign governments?
  • What’s their liability (if the data is stolen and published to the world)?

The number one obstacle to MSP growth is cost…”My client can’t afford another $500/month…

Really?

Your prospect probably spends (at least) half the price you’re offering at Starbucks on any given month.  What if that business leader really believed his data were in danger? Would he trade Starbucks for secure data?  I bet he would…but his risk has to be clear. And only you can show him…

(This is where my Free Assessment Template Comes In)…

3). Finally, bridge the marketing-sales gap…like this...(the connection between educating the prospect and proving his need through assessment).

You need something to tell the customer, “Act now!”coversion blueprint

Fix the marketing-sales gap and your sales numbers will grow!

The old-school sales rep will just keep making cold calls, looking for someone read to buy…

Cold calls no longer work. MSP is a commodity, and there are millions of choices…many of them good choices for less money. There has to be a better way to demonstration your value…

So create the compelling event….one that demands a solution your competition can’t provide…

How to Create Your Triggering Event – One That Leads To a Sale…Using Security

The good new is, with security threats all around us, you won’t need to manufacture scary stuff…it’s real and it’s everywhere.

But don’t be fooled, it’s not the  threat of the latest hacker news blurb…so don’t start sending reprints and posting already-published news stories…Everyone is doing this, and it doesn’t work…

(Of course you’ll need some security offerings, but chances are you have a few already in place – just not positioned correctly.)

What the client doesn’t understand – is your biggest opportunity. 2 Steps to Creating a Triggering Event…

Step 1: Start By Reframing The Customer’s Mindset… This is what a sales meeting, lunch & learn, or webinar should be…an educational session where people “learn” about stuff that actually matters…The goal is to get them picturing their own situation.

Rather than talking about computers and networks, show them their data is at risk… they just don’t see it…

Back to  the heart attack…there’s a big difference (response and brain activity) between seeing the blood-work numbers, and seeing a family member suffering and close to death…

SECURITY BREACHES KILL. Find one in their data and your ready to talk sales…

Security Breaches crush companies financially, hurt their customers and employees (financially, legally, etc.), and put them out of business.  It’s the electronic heart-attack.

Done right, your educational sessions (marketing message) have one goal…to compel your prospect to look at their own risk through an assessment!

You want them looking at their data, how much it’s worth, and how likely it is they’ll be compromised or suffer an attack. Proving the business is at risk is far more powerful than having prospects look at MSP features…

Of course, your prospect can’t measure risk alone anymore than I can assess my own risk of cancer or a heart attack. So what’s the next logical step?

Working with you on an ASSESSMENT…

assessment video pic

20 Minute Assessment Instructional Video

However, I’m not going to the doctor for testing unless I suspect something’s wrong.  But if someone educates me on symptoms and I think I might have some, and a simple test can reveal the truth, I’ll probably do the test.  That’s what an assessment is…

Step 2 – Perform the assessmentAssessments create the Triggering Event 90% of the time.  (Note: You’ll want this template if you want your report to actually convert to business). Without awareness, no one is going to sign up for an assessment – so you can take your “Free Assessment” offer off of your website…this type of cheesy ad will never convert to business…

Instead, start talking about data value, liability, and business owner risk…offer to wave your $5000 assessment fee, and you’re in…impact-v-likeihood

Want a simple way to conduct an assessment without expensive tools and intense 50 page documents?

My free assessment templates gives you a simple way to communicate risk in just 5 pages!

The key is my Impact vs. Likelihood graph…a visual way to show business leaders what their true exposure is…a measure of Impact if something goes wrong (which they can usually tell you), against a measure of how likely that disaster is to actually occur.

Measurable risk is enough to move just about any prospects to action, no matter how budget conscious  they are.

EXAMPLE: Just two weeks ago I presented these security truths to over 25 business leaders (who had never heard of me and did not know my qualifications). In less than 60 minutes we had 100% conversion…

These business-level attendees gladly gave us permission to review and expose their risk, bridging The Marketing- Sales Gap… 

Want to close MSP business faster with less discounting? Start driving new prospects to the assessment first. Then, measure their risk and show them why they need a new approach. Risk assessments are the fastest (most effective) method for closing high-margin recurring revenue.

© 2017, David Stelzl

PS. Don’t forget to download our free High-Conversion Risk Assessment Template

 

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2 responses to The Smart Sales Rep’s Answer to the Objection: We Don’t Need Your MSP Offer…

  1. 

    You’re grammar needs help. 🙂
    See your second sentence of your second paragraph. I almost quit reading after that.

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