Pitching the Value of Managed Services
When I was a new managed service provider (MSP), all my energy was focused on the success of my new service model. I had done the research and refined my service offering. I knew I had something valuable to provide to my new and existing clients, and I was ready to let managed services take my business to the next level.
But there was a roadblock. I had a long-time client who was fighting the change. They were used to the break-fix model, and managed services seemed intimidating. If this is happening to you, keep reading for some tips on easing the transition.
Clients are used to a certain way of dealing with their IT service management, and being presented with something new can be scary. While not every resistant client can be convinced, there are tools for helping reluctant clients understand what managed services can do for them. The key is to focus on the value you bring to their business.
Information is King
Easing your clients concerns over transitioning to managed services begins with educating them on the value of proactive services under a long-term contract rather than the reactive nature of a break-fix model.
- Are they concerned with budgeting? Explain that managed services mean easier budgeting with a single, predictable charge every month instead of unplanned and potentially massive charges after a major outage or system loss.
- Is price an issue? Make sure clients know a managed services model will reduce costly on-site visits and troubleshooting time. Paying a monthly fee might sound painful, but communicate that it comes with peace of mind thanks to proactive monitoring and management.
- Are they worried about service quality? Help your clients understand that you will now be able to spot problems before they have a major impact, or prevent issues from happening in the first place. This translates to less client downtime and no costly interruptions. In other words, what they are getting is exceptional customer support.
Don’t forget that your end game might be making the sale, but the client’s idea of a final outcome is getting the service they need. Pitch your services around their needs and expectations, and you’ll be better prepared to overcome concerns about budget, price and/or quality.
Under Promise & Over Deliver
Your clients need to know you’re on their side. When a client feels like you share their goals, you’ll have an easier time shifting them to a managed services model. But the key here is to make sure you can actually deliver on your promises. Be honest about your capabilities, and you’ll establish a trust that will develop into a long-term client relationship.
If your clients have unrealistic expectations, be direct about that, too. More often than not, clients will be happier to hear the truth and get top-quality service than deal with someone who promises the moon and doesn’t deliver. Trust and honesty will overcome nearly any objection to the managed services model, even the most commonly cited concern–price.
By turning your focus to what the client wants most, you’ll be able to answer the most important question: What value will you bring to their business? When you can offer clear and direct explanations of how managed services will solve their particular business concerns, you’ll be seen as a partner, rather than just another vendor. Over time you will become the one-stop-shop they can trust to get anything done.