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This week of Cybersecurity Awareness Month is “Cybersecurity Career Awareness Week.” To coincide with this theme, SmarterMSP spoke with Jean Maurice Prosper, CEO at Nettobe Solutions Limited, as part of our Channel Chat series, where he shared his experience in launching a new MSP offering.

In the Channel Chat, Jean emphasized the value in shifting to a managed services offering from their previous ‘break-fix’ model. He also discussed the value his MSP discovered in partnering with their vendor, particularly for managed security services.

Channel Chat Q&A with Jean Maurice Prosper of Nettobe Solutions Limited

Q: Can you give us a brief background on how your managed services journey was started?

Some of our customers were looking to stop their partnership with us because the yearly cost they were paying for our solutions was becoming too high for them. They were looking to outsource everything, but no solution was yet on the market for us to offer them.

Then we found a vendor that we could partner with to deliver managed services — and of course it matched what customers were looking for. We started to discuss the idea of managed services to our close customers and they were all encouraging us to move in that direction.

Q: What made you decide to create a new offering for customers, and what were some of the key solutions, services, or features of your new offering?

The biggest factor was because many of our customers were looking to drop the CAPEX mode for OPEX and so we were at risk of losing these customers. The customers had to pay for license renewal AND customer support and instead wanted one bundle where both could be free.

The main solutions we needed were for security and data protection. We built on our managed services offering to provide a complete outsourced solution that included everything: Hardware, software, and services & consultancy, all in one monthly pricing packaging for our customers.

Q: How did you position your offering to customers? What problems or obstacles did you encounter and adapt to during your initial positioning?

We came out with another product branding, completely different from our previous CAPEX offering. The main obstacle was helping people understand the concept behind it and why customers could not readily just shift with their owned devices & services on their own, and instead needed our managed services offering.

Our biggest challenge was that some customers wanted to continue with the solutions and services that already had in use and have our MSP manage them, which was difficult for us as we chose to stick only with one vendor. These customers would have to accept changing their vendor to sign on with our MSP.

Q: What advantages and other positive impacts to your MSP business came from the way that you positioned your services offering?

The vast majority of customers were interested in switching to our managed services model! Our change started at a time where business in our region was a bit low, but the change generated a rather rapid interest from customers. Through our choice of MSP vendor, our solutions were unique!

Q: What advice would you share with service providers who are getting started on their journey and building out their own offering?

The new service must be very clearly defined, and a proper study of the market is very necessary. You must know how to tweak and adapt your MSP offering to match the needs in the market.

Managed services cannot be sold “out of the box,” it has to include additional services and features that make the offer a “must-have” for the customer! Each new MSP must come up with their own identity in what they offer, and properly communicate it to the businesses they sell to.

Photo: dennispentek / Shutterstock

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Lindsay Faria

Posted by Lindsay Faria

As Director of MSP Marketing, Americas, at Barracuda, Lindsay Faria is dedicated to empowering Barracuda MSP partners to grow their businesses by providing tools and information to make marketing and selling their data protection services as effective, fast and easy as possible.

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