msp_marketing_planAs you close out 2015 and bring in the new year, use your downtime over the holidays to prepare your marketing plan for 2016. Growing your business, as Marcus Lemonis of CNBC’s The Profit puts it, is all about people, products and process.

The people are you and your team, the products are tools like those from Intronis and others, and then there’s the process. This is often the missing component of an IT company’s marketing and sales arsenal. Without a clear process to bring in more business, you are likely growing very slowly—if at all.

It’s just like having an onboarding process when you win a new customer. You probably go through a checklist to get them set up properly with your remote monitoring and automation tool, your data backup process, and so on.

Creating a process for marketing your business involves some careful thinking about your customers. It’s not that hard. It just takes a little time, which is a great reason to work on this over the next few weeks, maybe even with a glass of eggnog.

The Critical First Step in MSP Marketing

Most IT companies skip the first step and jump right into other activities, like writing sales copy, starting a newsletter, updating their web site, writing a blog, you name it. The problem with this approach is that you’re creating material without having a clear definition of whom you are creating it for.

To fix this, start by creating your buyer persona, an outline that describes your ideal client. Here’s a list of questions you should ask about your perfect customer:

  • Are they male/female?
  • What is their average age?
  • Where do they work? (office only, home office, mobile, all of the above)
  • How technical are they?
  • What publications do they read?
  • Which conferences, seminars, and events do they attend regularly?

Knowing the answers to these critical questions will enable you to create a profile that characterizes the type of person you want to find.

Armed with this information, you’ll know which networking events to attend because people who fit your profile of your ideal client will be there. You’ll know what types of issues they face and whether your sales approach should educate with basic information or something more technical.

How to create a successful 2016 marketing plan

Watch the recorded webinar to learn about the other components of a successful IT marketing plan — and get a free copy of a 12-month marketing plan template. After the webinar, you’ll be able to download this editable Word file to create your own plan to grow your business in 2016.

Photo Credit: Willi Heidelbach via Flickr.com. Used under CC 2.0 License.

Posted by Raj Khera

Raj Khera is the author of No. 1 Amazon Bestseller, The IT Marketing Crash Course, and CEO of MailerMailer, makers of Presstacular — an affordable, automated marketing tool for small MSPs. He has built and sold three other technology businesses.

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