Q: I’ve heard from a couple people that we should host webinars for our SMB customers. I think we have the resources to do it, but it doesn’t seem like something our competitors are doing. Why should my MSP host webinars?
We can certainly understand being a little leery of investing both time and effort in a new way to interact with your customers. However, hosting webinars can differentiate your MSP from your competition and position your employees as being knowledgeable about the latest industry trends. It’s even better to start hosting them before your competitors discover the tactic.
To explain why you should host webinars and why it’s beneficial to your MSP, we spoke with Intronis’ Senior Manager of Demand Generation, Sarah Duffy. Sarah runs the webinars and develops new educational topics to help MSPs grow. With over 100 webinars under her belt, she is our go-to source when it comes to running a successful webinar.
Top 3 Reasons why you should host webinars
Webinars are a fairly inexpensive way to educate prospects and customers. They can promote new service offerings and grab your audience’s attention. Here are the top three reasons why your MSP should host webinars:
1. Educate SMBs about new types of threats
Webinars are a great non-invasive way to pitch to your customers about industry trends. While cyber security or the newest ransomware threats might not be on their everyday radar, a 30-minute webinar on topics like this can certainly provide them with the information they need to be more cautious. For example, should they be watching out for the newest phishing attack? How can they spot a dangerous email in their inbox? Give your SMBs the tips they need to help keep their business safe.
If you are a vertical-centric MSP, informing customers about the latest compliance regulations helps to keep them aware of changes or deadlines they need to be aware of; as these types of regulations — HIPAA and PCI DSS in particular —are changing continuously. A webinar will give you a chance to make sure your customers are aware of important updates and to let them know what measures your MSP is currently taking in order to keep them compliant.
With educational-based webinars, this not only helps your customers know they are fully protected but it also helps prospects understand the unique services you offer and how you protect your customers.
2. Train your customers on new tools
Set your customers up for success by using a webinar to train them on new tools and technologies. Not all SMBs are tech savvy, so webinars provide an inexpensive approach to educating them, which results in you becoming a subject matter expert they turn to in technology. For example, what are some frequently asked questions you hear from SMBs? If your customers are always asking the same thing, use it as a topic for your next webinar. You can help your SMBs by offering them training on the new Microsoft update, new software, or new operating systems.
By training your SMBs to overcome these types of challenges and questions, you can help them grow and free up your techs valuable time. While setting up a 30-minute demo might seem time-consuming in the beginning, once a few prospects or customers watch your webinar you’ll see a good return on your investment.
3. Promote services you offer
You can also use webinars to get prospects interested in your managed services. Hosting a webinar is an easy way for interested prospects or customers to learn about new products or services without the pressure of a sales call. It’s also a great way for you to get interested prospects into the pipeline. This type of webinar would be an opportunity for you to show your expertise, and it gives them another way to learn more about you.
Offering new security services? Host a webinar that teaches your customers and prospects the benefits of this add-on service. Whether you’re adding a new training service to teach their employees about phishing or adding security for Office 365, webinars are a great way to answer initial questions about the service and get the word out.
Hosting a webinar may seem time-consuming upfront, however it can be recorded and placed on your website for users to re-watch or watch on a later date. That makes it an efficient tool for both prospects and customers to go back to and review when needed. Everything considered, it’s actually surprising that more MSPs aren’t using webinars to promote their businesses.
Ask an MSP Expert is a weekly advice column answering common questions from MSPs and IT service providers. It covers topics ranging from pricing and selling to marketing and communications—and everything in between.