Stop me if you’ve heard this before: sell on value, not on price. Sounds great, right? And it is good advice. But you need the right tools, if you’re going to shift the conversation to value. So what does that conversation look like? In the coming weeks, our series The Value Conversation will help give you the tools that you need to convey value to new prospects and established clients alike.
In order to have easier conversations with your clients and prospects, you first need to have a tough conversation with yourself. You need to understand how, precisely, you add value. The value conversation starts with you – you are not just doing IT stuff, you are adding value to your clients.
There are three main ways you might do this.
You save your customers money
One path to profit is to reduce costs, so figure out how you’re going to help your customers cut their costs. That means offering them solutions that make them more efficient. It also means delivering a service to them that is more efficient than if they did it themselves. Let’s say your client wants to talk about how much you’re charging to keep their basic infrastructure working. There’s two counters to this. One is to point out all the things that you do that they might not be aware of. Use your documentation to highlight the different things that you do behind the scenes to deliver this uptime.
But also be prepared to, politely, discuss how much it would cost them to do this work themselves. They might think they can administer their own Office 365 licenses, but can they troubleshoot workstation problems? Can they keep the website running? How about the servers? Your value is that not only do they not have to do these things themselves, but because they don’t need to think about this stuff, they can focus on doing what they are actually good at.
Don’t forget that it’s not about doing things more cheaply – it’s about doing things more efficiently. They can always get some schmuck off the street to do their IT on the cheap, but your value is that while you cost a little bit more, you deliver a lot more.
You make your customers money
Saving money is one half of the profit equation. Making more money is the other half. So how do you make your customers more money? Get them software that helps them do just that. If the only IT you provide your clients is the baseline “keep the lights on” sort of stuff, you’re missing out on a great opportunity to build value. Most SMBs aren’t up to speed on modern software options, especially on the sales and marketing side. Explore opportunities to add value managing things like CRMs or marketing engines, tools they might not know much about, but where you can help them make more money, and that in turn can help them pay for your service.
You reduce your customers’ risk
In finance, risk is defined as volatility. But for SMBs, it’s mostly the downside volatility that matters, right? You probably add value here already, with firewalls, backup and recovery services, and password management. But this is very fertile ground for adding value to your clients. Consider the following. Your clients don’t know a whole lot about cybersecurity. They probably don’t even know all the risks. They certainly aren’t equipped to manage those risks. But those exact risks – ransomware, data theft, data loss, hacking – are the types of things that keep SMB owners up at night, because they pose an existential threat to their business. There is probably no faster and easier way to add value to your SMB clients than to solve security, compliance and risk problems for them.
When you think about what moves the needle on sales, those are the three big ones. If you can convince your clients that you will save them money, help them make more money, or reduce downside risk in their business, then you’re having a value conversation. The next step, of course, is to give yourself the tools to convince them of this. We’ll show you how next week.
To learn how IT Glue can give you a competitive edge in your value conversations, join our demo below.
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