Here at CharTec, we’ve been around the block a couple of times. We help managed service providers (MSPs) every single day with sales, marketing, operations, finance, and cultural challenges, plus a lot more. So, we know that one of the biggest hurdles MSPs regularly face – is the sales process.
But to reach that elite status, there are five prerequisites you absolutely must achieve before attempting to close on a managed service deal:
1. Recognize Needs
The first step is to identify as many needs as possible during your discovery process. Try to dig for needs that aren’t top-of-mind for your client at that moment and make note of them all. The more needs a client has, the more valuable your solution will be and the easier it will be to show that your cost is justified. Make sure to dive deep into business issues and any negative implications they may cause. Instead of telling a CEO or owner that their server is outdated and likely to crash, it is better to position a needs-based argument around helping the company to avoid downtime. See the difference?
2. Bring a Viable Solution
Make sure you have a viable solution that suits your prospective client’s needs. Then, directly draw connections between their identified needs and the solution you can provide so that signing the deal is almost a no-brainer. For example, did you find that their backup solution was failing? Mention the negative impact that lost data could cause and then highlight your backup and disaster recovery solution. Voilà. And always make sure you can support your potential client correctly on the back end. Do not try to sell services you don’t have or cannot perform. Duh.
3. Justify the Cost with Value
You must make sure the value you’re bringing to your client justifies the price tag. Currently, consumers look at prices first and make quick judgments based on numbers. You absolutely must make sure the value of your solution justifies the dollar figure. If you performed your discovery correctly, you should have a long list of your client’s needs matched to the ways your solution will fix their challenges. This approach helps to minimize sticker shock by proving that your service is worth the cost.
This one can be tough, but it’s necessary. If your client doesn’t see a reason to sign the agreement immediately, there’s no way you’re leaving the presentation with a signature. Creating a sense of urgency ensures there’s no long follow-up process. But how do we create urgency? It all ties back to your discovery process (again, if you don’t have a process, come to CharTec). If you can accurately show how much money, time, and energy their business is wasting on outdated and mismanaged IT, and that their bottom line will be hurt if they wait another second, you’ll get their John Hancock with ease.
5. Meet with the Authorized Buyer
If you aren’t presenting your solution to a decision-maker or owner, you’re wasting your time. We all know how the game of telephone goes: one word is said to the first person but by the time it passes through five others, it doesn’t’ even resemble the original. That’s what happens if you present to an office manager, or anyone other than the person who can sign that agreement. Always ensure the decision- maker is present.