Turn Prospects into Clients Through Collaboration

By Stuart_R_Crawford
In MSP Coaching
July 2, 2013

Stuart R. Crawford / Stuart Crawford

When prospects decide to purchase services from an MSP, it’s usually for one of two reasons:

  1. They’re required to make the purchase.
  2. They want to make the purchase.

MSP Sales SuccessIn reason number one, they don’t have a choice. The purchase is required; for example: A business is located in an area that’s prone to natural disasters. You won’t need to convince this prospect why they need a disaster-recovery solution or business-continuity plan, only why they need them from you. 

In reason number two, they have a choice. The purchase is desired; for example: A business is looking for an MSP that provides backup services. Since this prospect isn’t required to choose your company, you must convince them that your services are the best option.

However, this isn’t a simple thing to do. You may not be at the top of the prospect’s MSP list. So what’s the key to getting there—Requirement & Desire.

  • Requirement: Find a product and/or service your prospect doesn’t have and convince them that it’s a necessity.    
  • Desire: They must want this necessary product and/or service that only you can provide for them.

Collaboration is the best way to convince a prospect that they require a product and/or service they desire.

Five Steps to Use:

  1. 1.     Encourage The Prospect to Visualize the Possibilities and Benefits: The problem isn’t with your products and/services, it’s the psychological effect created by a lack of communication.  Early on, you should ask the prospect to think about the possibilities of using a particular product or service. For example, you might say something like:
  • “Given what we’ve already discussed, what kind of impact do you think [product and/or service] would have on your business six months from now?”
  • “You mentioned that A and B aren’t issues for you, but C and D are. If we could implement a tailored solution that addressed C and D only, what benefits do you think you’d gain?  How would this impact your business?

Inspire the prospect so they’ll engage in conversation and visualize the benefit of the options you’re providing. They may not have a clear idea of what to do, and they could choose something that isn’t the best option for them. It’s best to tell them what you think is the best possible solution is, and walk them through it.

  1. 2.     Encourage the Prospect to Collaborate: Arrange a meeting to collaborate with the prospect. For example: you can set the meeting for the purpose of sharing ideas you think would be beneficial to them; but let them know that your ideas aren’t complete and you need their help. This invites them to be involved in the process.

Begin the meeting with an introduction that invites them to add their thoughts and questions. When you engage the prospect, the idea is to encourage them to be an active participant in the process, not someone who simply listens to a pitch and makes a decision.

  1. 3.     Ask Precise Questions: Set the tone and define the agenda for the discussion. Ask meaningful questions that force the prospect to think. For example:
  • “Has not acting on this issue decreased the productivity of your company?”
  • “When I’ve seen issues similar to yours, such as A and B, it usually ended in even bigger problems, such as C and D. We can come up with a solution that would prevent this from happening.”

These types of questions will make the prospect think, and consider what they need and want.

  1. Move Forward Together: Don’t ask them how to move forward without defining a guideline. For example: “Where do you think we should go from here?” is too open-ended. Decide on an appropriate and beneficial solution together. Most MSPs have a lot to offer, and they have flexibility in the services and/or products they offer. When the prospect has a role in shaping the final package, they’ll feel a sense of pride in ownership, as well as feeling more committed to seeing the end results.
  2. 5.     Give the Prospect Ownership of The Idea: For example, consider the last point. The buyer might suggest a specific solution as the best idea. You might have already thought of this, but don’t claim the idea as your own.  Instead, say something like: “I think that’s a good idea. In fact, I think it will be the best solution for your business.” When they own the concept, it increases their desire to commit to the idea.

Collaboration with your prospects will place you on high on their list of MSP choices, and prepare the way for turning them into a client.

Are you having trouble turning prospects into clients? Call Ulistic today at 716.799.1999 ext. 102 to schedule a no-obligation consultation. We’re here to help MSPs achieve stratospheric success!

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