This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
Top 10 IT Marketing Strategies For Consistently Attracting New Business Clients to Your Small IT Business
........................................... 12 10........................ What are some sales call strategies that could help me gain new customers? ........................ 3 1. 8 6................. 11 9............................. How can I most effectively market my business? .......................... How do I become a widely known business? ................... 7 5................Top 10 IT Marketing Strategies for Small IT Businesses Contents How Can You Consistently Attract New Small Business Clients? ................................................................................................ 5 3....com ..................................... What are the best-known ways to market computer consulting services? ......... 15 Additional Recommended Reading ............................ 9 7................................................................ 10 8....................................... How do I find more qualified clients? ................ What is the best way to generate a steady supply of monthly clients?... 4 2.... 14 Conclusion .................................. How can I draw in higher paying clients? ........................................................................................................ 3 The Top 10 Marketing Strategies for Small IT Businesses ............... Why can’t I find any new clients? ................. What are the some of the best ways to draw in new business? .............. 16 SPHomeRun................ Where should I search for new contracts? ....................................... 6 4...........
It will guide you to know exactly what to do in your quest for higher paying customers. re-tool and re-align with a stronger. The game plan we have here is based on many years of hands-on and eyes wide-open experience. SPHomeRun. It is also a key infrastructural element of many small businesses such as dental practices.com The Top 10 Marketing Strategies for Small IT Businesses The ultimate goal we are seeking is to be able to consistently generate leads that are pre-disposed to becoming highpaying. if you have the core skill set to handle the overwhelming majority (75 – 85 percent) of these businesses’ general IT needs. VARs. and proactive plan of attack. do you and your company have the will (to shift your business paradigm to its full potential)? Technology is the cornerstone of computer consulting businesses. How can I draw in higher paying clients? 7.Top 10 IT Marketing Strategies for Small IT Businesses How Can You Consistently Attract New Small Business Clients? Where there is a will. and provided it is correctly nurtured and courted. where you're coming in to take care of anything and everything having to do with a local small business’s IT needs. computer repair businesses. The top 10 strategies you need to hone in on are: 1. take stock. To achieve that. How can I most effectively market my business? 4. service agreement clients. there is no reason you or you and your partner(s) cannot do a reasonably decent job for your clients. What are some sales call strategies that could help me gain new customers? 3 . more deliberate. How do I find more qualified clients? 5. We have the way here but the real question is. health clubs. and for them to be with you for many years to come. What is the best way to generate a steady supply of monthly clients? 6. IT solution providers. and IT services companies. managed service providers. Where should I search for new contracts? 3. Thus. and your expertise. So if you are at the stage where you are looking to grow your business. there is a way. What are some of the best ways to draw in new business? 2. ongoing. your brand. and restaurant chains. your big value has to be your credibility.
managers. or SPHomeRun. Make a big splash in the little pond of B2B tradeshows Local or regional business-to business related tradeshows attract the small business owners.com 4 . What are the some of the best ways to draw in new business? As a computer consulting business owner.com). Four groups for you to kick off with are: Chambers of commerce that are local city-related. Why can’t I find any new clients? 9. religious organizations.com). The emphasis is “local” -. but are noncompeting technology providers. 1. or writing an article for their program or newsletter. hosting a breakout session. but there are five simple ways that you can put to work to be able to draw in new business. being part of the planning committee. There is no need to re-invent the wheel. Join and get active in four or five different local business-related organizations. Lead-sharing groups like LeTip International (www. or regional-related. This way you can make your presence felt and known.bni.Top 10 IT Marketing Strategies for Small IT Businesses 8. or special interest. College or university alumni associations. You want to get out there. How do I become a widely known business? 10.small business owners and managers really need that hand-holding. town-related. or independent-related groups. and decision-makers that you are trying to reach. you need to proactively and consistently tap into streams of new business in order to boost your company’s continued growth. Ensure you have a meaningful presence there in the form of running a booth. What are the best-known ways to market computer consulting services? BNI (www.letip. to build relationships with your target client market. IT user groups so you can meet subject-matter experts who do similar things. Give talks and sponsor events for local business owner groups Get comfortable at giving speeches and sponsoring seminars on topics that are relevant and useful to the local small business groups you are targeting. or minority related. or civicrelated groups that you are active in.
you want to ask prospects if they've given much thought to how they would like support handled on an ongoing basis. drawings. customers.Top 10 IT Marketing Strategies for Small IT Businesses Use value added direct mail to stay in touch with your in-house mailing list You must consistently grow your inhouse mailing list with new names. 2. you have already qualified them as being worth your time. You have to stay ahead of the game with your qualified prospects. You want to know exactly where and how to seek out such contracts. You have already proven your value to them with the small initial project. Bear in mind. They are local trusted business advisors and non-competing technology providers such as CPA’s. when it comes to substantial small business IT needs. Plus. the turn of the month. there will be a follow-up project: a systems upgrade. or special offers. size. Usually. If they ask for your recommendations. Second most responsive – your existing qualified leads/prospects Qualified leads and prospects are your next most responsive group. At this juncture. platform and industry. Most responsive – your new customers Existing customers who are new to your business are your most valuable source of new potential contracts. Where should I search for new contracts? Recurring revenue is what it’s all about when you are a small computer consulting business. search engine marketing consultants. Invest in relationships with the influencers of your target market The influencers are those who already have relationships with local small businesses where you want to get a foot in the door. You don’t want to have to worry about whether or not revenue is coming in at SPHomeRun. or the quarter. network rollout. They match what is desirable to you in terms of geography. Send out direct mail regularly to stay in touch using value-added information such as a tip sheet. These could be collected through white papers. that’s when you talk about your case studies and the great things you do for other similar small business clients. or something similar.com 5 . Why? These customers have already successfully gone through your sales cycle and have become your customers. or the year. and clients. or PHP/MySQL developers. a tutorial. sales cycles may take a minimum of several weeks to as long as a year or more. or an informative special report.
Generally. 3. the more sophisticated their IT needs. ask open-ended questions. Tell them about this new arrangement with your new clients. In order for this strategy to be effective. you’re going to need to give them a deadline or an ultimatum. narrow your target market geographically. They 6 SPHomeRun. It could be in terms of a certain mileage range. Innuendos aside. the better their match for you. as a small IT company with limited resources. Narrow down by Geography First.Top 10 IT Marketing Strategies for Small IT Businesses Once these leads and prospects are qualified. your next move is to set an initial meeting to talk about their problems. all small businesses are not created equal. Narrow down by Size Second. you want to present this message at a point where you can afford to lose these clients. How can I most effectively market my business? As much as you may like to be on an equal footing with huge computer superstore chains. Third most responsive – your customers who have been with you for years Based on your new marketing plan. driving time. You want to look at how fast you can reach them in an emergency. Look for small companies that produce between a million to twenty million dollars in annual revenue (or your local currency equivalent). For many small IT companies. Instead. after you have transformed your annual revenue to the point that the majority of your service revenue is from new customers with service agreements. You have to approach your long-time clients from a position of strength. more than likely. try to outsmart the industry giants with precise and effective targeted marketing. a service radius of 30 to 60 minutes by car usually fits the bill. it’s time to go back to your old clients who were grandfathered in (clients who have been with your company for over 5 years) and plant the seeds. zip or postal codes. Understand right away that small business is not a niche and not specific enough of a target market. and take many notes. or a portion of the state. you cannot and do not want to be all things to all people. how well it’s working out.com . That meeting will test whether the mindsets and personalities mesh well together and whether the chemistry is strong enough to take the next logical step: a small initial proving ground project. know that size really matters. and the glowing case studies that result.
a strong. you will not be able to 7 . Are these prospects qualified to be clients of yours? Are these prospects similar enough to your existing clients? Are they worried about the same basic set of IT issues to be worth your courtship and lead nurturing? With a target industry in mind. Not all small businesses are created equal. Focus on B2B not B2C Make sure you strictly focus on the business-to-business (B2B) segment. coupon packs. approach your marketing campaigns one industry at a time. small businesses are largely fragmented and only a targeted approach will help you reach the specific market segments of more prospective qualified clients that you seek. For example. if you are a Microsoft Windows specialist. You do not want to take on any paying customer especially in the business-toconsumer (B2C) space. and the platform they are going to use in the future. Make sure that your marketing copy has benefit-focused bullet points. untargeted retail-oriented advertising like phonebook ads. decide whether they make the cut.Top 10 IT Marketing Strategies for Small IT Businesses understand what IT can do for their businesses. In fact. compelling. They are not homogenous. and what makes their businesses tick. Instead.com and expresses an urgency that motivates prospects to take action immediately. their niches. outdated. Why? Because it is easier to hit the raw nerve and make prospects take notice of your company. Narrow down by Industry Third. you absolutely should not waste any money or time on lame. Platform match is crucial Your core skills must match the platform prospective clients are predominantly invested in. How do I find more qualified clients? Let's get one thing straight. not everyone eats theirs the exact same way. where you will barely breakeven because that one-shot deal will cut into your customer acquisition costs. your marketing vehicles should have headlines that resonate with your intended audience. Know their industries. or newspaper ads. Focus your marketing activities on measurable actions At this stage of the game. Like peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. and clear call to action (Visit Our Website Now to get Your Free Report on the “Top 20 Little-Known Secrets of Expensive Technology Consultants”). SPHomeRun. 4.
that is where to spend your marketing time and dollars. If you are doing this. Get an early start on the sales cycle Stay away from auction-based situations where you are a commodity broker bidding for jobs. and train them to know that you are the only one they should consider calling for their IT needs. Begin with the end goal and work backwards A lot of people do not realize this.com . and are used to paying for professional IT support. on the right platform. in the right industry. Past and current IT Support You need to know if prospective clients are used to paying for their IT support. family members. as opposed to receiving free support from friends. Plant the seeds. For example. You have to get there before there is an active need. but you want to begin with the end goal and work backwards. demonstrate your expertise. if your goal is to build a strong recurring revenue base from a support agreement-centric business. Move these prospects from qualified leads to sales appointments. For your small IT business to grow profitability.Top 10 IT Marketing Strategies for Small IT Businesses lucratively support a prospective client's Apple Mac OS needs without bringing in a subcontractor. makers who can hire your company and ultimately become incredibly loyal to your company's ongoing service agreement program. Focus on the decision makers in companies that are geographically desirable. and other volunteers. you got there far too late in the sales cycle. Move them from small “proving ground” projects to major remediation projects. Then move them to: “Gee. of the right size. you have to nurture and train prospects much earlier in the sales cycle—showing them that you are the one-and-only best solution to their 8 5. This plan needs to continually create awareness among key local decision SPHomeRun. you need to have a costeffective marketing plan. What is the best way to generate a steady supply of monthly clients? An IT business without marketing is on borrowed time. have you given much thought to how you would like your support handled on an ongoing basis?” Reach out to prospects much earlier in the sales cycle Essentially.
You have to know how to invest your time and resources in effective marketing that SPHomeRun.com gets you and your company to the kind of revenue streams you desire. to plant the seeds and create awareness. How can I draw in higher paying clients? If you have been working for the IT equivalent of the minimum wage and want to put on the brakes. Nurture your leads with valueadded interactions Make use of white papers. “Are you ready to buy yet?” Instead.e. Here’s what this means: Do not constantly ask. small home business users are unprofitable and not worth your time). the B2B segment (mentioned in point four).g. If the initial proving ground project goes well. plus the following two areas to turn things around to get higher paying clients: Be a true outsourced ROI-focused CIO Make sure that you understand what makes your clients tick. there usually will be a follow-up remediation project. When these new customers are patting you on the back. 6. some of the things to avoid: Low volume approach (i. you have come to the right page. marketing to anyone and everyone will not draw in the recurring monthly revenue streams you seek. In the IT space. the problems 9 . First of all.. You need to stop under-selling yourself and your skill set. Get the processes and timing right You have to strike while the iron is hot—know the best time to suggest an ongoing support arrangement. offer valuable advice that provides a tiny sample of what your prospects can access once they become clients. online auction market places where people make their decisions largely based on price). Once the relationship is started. that’s the best time to ask how they would like to have these systems supported on an ongoing basis. stay in front of leads and prospects and nurture them with regular follow-up on a value-added basis.Top 10 IT Marketing Strategies for Small IT Businesses needs—way before they are ready to bring someone in to help with their business and IT problems. Stay away from auction-based bidding situations (e. Instead hone in on the right size (mentioned in point three). seminars and speaking engagements with local business groups and deeply niche’d technology providers. Do not lead with a productcentric pitch (do not just sell the hardware and the software tools).
Use credibility builders like white papers. testimonial videos. VAR. and how they take prospects through their sales cycles. IT solution provider. Many people mistakenly think they have to be evangelists for channel programs that they are involved in. Must-have’s and to-do’s at sales meetings Abundant social proof – Your satisfied clients are your best salespeople. the reality is what puts service revenue into your company’s bank account is promoting your business. your value proposition. Letter of engagement .com . special reports. point four). their competitive landscapes. or computer repair business. so bring along case studies. your brand. So you have to have a steady supply of prospects.Top 10 IT Marketing Strategies for Small IT Businesses that they are facing in their marketplaces. All of your messaging needs to focus on your company. Don't be an evangelist for someone else’s channel program. and your client reference list. MSP. your sales call strategies should reinforce your marketing campaigns that advance you and your company as your area's foremost IT expert. and what you bring to the table. In addition to targeting tightly qualified leads in the B2B space (discussed in SPHomeRun. Always lead with your company’s value proposition Always lead with your marketing pitch and your sales pitch. the future of your business is your clients. customers. What are some sales call strategies that could help me gain new customers? Whether you are a computer consulting business. network integrator. and your expertise. or writing a book to promote you and your brand. These are vital concepts to grasp if you are looking to attract higher paying clients. their regulatory issues. Apply the full cost of that proving ground project – Rebate the full cost of the proving ground project to any future follow-up work you do with new customers within 30 10 7.Ensure you have the letter of engagement ready for your small initial proving ground project in order to get the ball rolling with new customers. if you are primarily there to help your local small businesses on an outsourced basis with their IT problems. and clients. Yet. speaking engagements.
pushing the stuff from the channel programs you have invested in? Rather. there are some specifics to be established. you can afford to be more selective about the new customers that you choose. is your target prospect geographically desirable? The right size? Size (mentioned in point three).Top 10 IT Marketing Strategies for Small IT Businesses days after that initial technology assessment (proving ground project). 8. How do you conduct a sales call? What do you actually talk about during a sales call? Are you focused on solving their problems or are you playing the role of box-pusher. whether examined by annual revenue or number of installed workstations and servers. do you really want this company as a new customer or client of yours? When you have enough irons in the fire and momentum going in your marketing process. Guarantee the technology assessment . such as: SPHomeRun. is a huge issue that throws people a curve ball. why can’t I lose weight? Before such questions can be answered. Why can’t I find any new clients? This is like you asking your doctor. Where are you looking? What are your lead qualification questions? In other words.Another big thing is to actually guarantee the technology assessment by challenging prospects with something like.listen for subtle nuances and read between the lines to figure out whether this is a new prospective client that you want. you want to focus on understanding their business problems and how you and your company’s expertise can help to solve those problems on an ongoing basis. Prospective clients must also understand the value of working with a local trusted technology advisor. Prospective clients have to be big enough to afford your professional recommendations. This needs analysis is not just a one-time event. it’s for you and your business’ long term success and survival. “if we don’t find at least three big time accidents waiting to happen in your IT infrastructure.” Pay attention . If you are sitting there and sense all kinds of crazy stress. we will fully refund 100% of the cost of the assessment.com 11 .
Keep track of what’s been working and what’s not working The solution to why you can’t find any clients should include an in-depth review of what you are actually doing. You want to make sure you have a proactive plan of attack on how you are going to deliberately go after the kinds of new clients that your business needs to be able to secure its future growth and long-term viability. Then check back to review and to see where the time actually went. and online auction marketplaces 9.com . Also for the next couple of weeks. coupon pack ads. many times ridiculously under-invested in. in a niche. Keep control of your time management by using a journal. Our definition of widely is: to make your business stand out locally. take note of the things that you do to sabotage your opportunities to find new clients like: hoping for the tooth fairy to slip the client list under your pillow at night having tunnel vision by focusing on unprofitable small office home office (SOHO) users not looking hard enough for prospective new clients giving up at networking events before trying overlooking the enormous potential of relationships with other trusted business advisors and non-competing technology providers being completely naïve about how to let target prospects know about you and your great IT skills looking in the wrong places for clients – such as phonebooks. How do I become a widely known business? The reality is that “widely” is a relative term. general newspaper advertising. Quite often people are under-invested in. it takes work and it takes a marketing budget. It 12 SPHomeRun. be really specific about where every 15 minute or half hour block of your business week is going. Similarly.Top 10 IT Marketing Strategies for Small IT Businesses What kind of time and resources are you putting into marketing activities? In order to acquire clients that are worth having. marketing activities because they are not thinking about the lifetime value of these clients. as well as in the real and virtual worlds.
That’s very doable if you are really tightly focused on this small (but IT-intensive) niche.zapdata. It isn't just about creatively solving business IT problems with ROI focus. Do something unique To really stand out from the crowd. Start locally By local. want the peace of mind to know that you can get there fast enough if there is an IT emergency. it quickly moves you further along in the sales process.600 dentists in this area according to www. They want to know that if they have to make a “claim. donate something remarkable. it becomes easier to be more widely known in specific kinds of small businesses within a niche in that area. For example.com a time. we strongly encourage you to write a simple plan of attack: a checklist to prioritize by month. and trade shows. Within a niche When we think locally. and by year. When you are focused on one segment at SPHomeRun.” you are going be there super-fast. Write a simple plan of attack If you want to attract new small business clients consistently. Step up to the plate and write the regular tips column on IT issues in a newsletter or blog.com —a very “healthy” market segment if you are looking to have 10–20% market share. You are your clients’ IT “insurance policy” of sorts. because there is much less competition and a lot less sales resistance. 13 . Be everywhere You want to be everywhere within your chosen niche—to have a real presence and be an active member in relevant local business organizations. or join the board of directors of a relevant organization. by quarter. There are about 1. you won’t have many emergencies. committees. Network with bloggers and podcasters who cover your particular niche.Top 10 IT Marketing Strategies for Small IT Businesses is important to cover the bases. however. This helps you get some virtual ink from those publishers on occasion. Here’s why: If you do your job well. This will help you become more widely known. Clients. write a book. let's say you are going to focus on the IT needs of dentists in the Greater San Diego. Sponsor an event from time to time. California (United States) area. we mean a serviceable radius that you can get to in a 30 to 60 minute drive. especially the most relevant bases.
however. Tackle one small goal at a time. Build mutually beneficial referral relationships with local trusted business advisors and noncompeting technology providers. don't just think one relationship at a time.Top 10 IT Marketing Strategies for Small IT Businesses Plan at least 12 to 18 months into the future. Bear in mind. It's up to you to choose whether you want to pay a referral fee. So get yourself plugged in. professional IT help. In a nutshell.com When networking. You have less selling time and more billable time—at higher hourly billing rates. People frequently ask for referrals from other trusted business advisors. It’s building up a friendship in which the trust works both ways. These are ideas that can be used right away in the field. or the best-known way. Bear in mind because of how these leads come your way. What are the bestknown ways to market computer consulting services? The right way. Block out that time on your calendar. and quarter-by-quarter. to market you and your computer consulting services is not rocket science. making progress on becoming more widely known. build relationships with many people who can refer five or ten clients. SPHomeRun. 10. month-by-month. Give yourself a goal of meeting one new person like this each month. and start working on these goals week-by-week. Properly qualify your leads. In fact. Reach prospects at the top of the sales cycle — grab mindshare and plant your seeds early. you have to: Think B2B and not B2C — you do not want to be a charity. Cool stuff all around! 14 . Taking someone to lunch a couple of times a year is inexpensive relative to what that relationship can bring to you over the long term. because these folks can eventually become a fabulous extension of your sales force and will get you some of your highest quality leads. there are much quicker sales cycles and very little (if any) interest in price shopping. competent. these trusted business advisors are constantly asked for advice on a very wide variety of professional services. we've been talking about some of them for the last fifteen years. Start planting these seeds through mutual acquaintances active in certain organizations. including how to find local. Focus on your value proposition and not just product reselling.
Canada. the game has changed.Top 10 IT Marketing Strategies for Small IT Businesses Conclusion Like the winning quarterback who goes into the football game with loads of game plans up his sleeve. All Worldwide Rights Reserved. While channel programs. and the Caribbean. New Zealand. SP Home Run Inc. Copyright © 2012. Australia. The time is now for you to take action and apply these proven top 10 marketing strategies for consistently attracting new clients to your small IT business. certifications. SPHomeRun.com 15 . SP Home Run is a trademark of SP Home Run Inc. Ireland. so you can proactively attract the best high-paying small business clients in your local area? Within these pages is a proven game plan that has been shown to be effective in hundreds of local markets across the United States. vendor authorizations. and SOHO customers had their places in a bygone era. we have given you the game plan for tackling many of the most common marketing and client attraction challenges that stand in the way of a small IT business’s future growth. the United Kingdom. Have you noticed lately how your business’s performance is relative to your local competitors? Are you satisfied? Or are you ready to get back in the game. While investing lightly in any of one of these areas will rarely harm your company's future—each of them could even moderately help—the days of betting your company on any one of these institutions have passed by. South Africa.
if you’re just getting started or even re-started IT Channel and Small Business Technology: so you can deliver soup-to-nuts. outsourced virtual IT solutions • • • • Apply now for your free subscription at http://www.sphomerun. build recurring revenue. and grow your business. and specials that can help you get clients. you’ll learn about new tools.com/update SPHomeRun. tips.Top 10 IT Marketing Strategies for Small IT Businesses Additional Recommended Reading Sign up now for your free subscription to the SP Home Run Weekly Update Newsletter. events.com 16 . Topics include: • IT Marketing and Lead Generation: so can you attract great new prospective clients Selling IT and Lead Nurturing: so you can sign up new clients IT Service Contracts: so you can get recurring revenue Starting Up a New IT Business: so you can jump start your new business. Each week. resources.
This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
We've moved you to where you read on your other device.
Get the full title to continue reading from where you left off, or restart the preview.