There is nothing more important than a first impression, and in business, your first impression is usually made through marketing, long before you and a potential customer ever meet face to face. We have put together this guide to help you think through the ins and outs of both marketing your services and making the sale once you have made contact with a potential customer.
In this guide we’ll cover the following topics:
- Understand your customer
- Discover your niche
- Build trust
- Emphasize integration
- Educate potential customers
- Focus on outcomes
Understand your customer
One of the most important steps in marketing security services is knowing your customer. Who are you selling to? There are two ways of looking at potential customers: industry and size. If you are marketing to multiple industries, you need to understand what sets these businesses apart from one another. For example, healthcare and financial industries have many more regulations than a company that deals in consumer goods. Then, you must consider a company’s size.
Discover your niche
Some businesses try to be all things to all customers, but that also makes it hard to stand out. To take your business to the next level, consider honing your strengths and concentrating on a niche that makes you unique in the market. Examine the commonalities among your current clients, their industries and their needs. Of your current services, where do you find that you really shine? Are you passionate about endpoint security solutions and IT security? Perhaps you are helping a lot of your existing clients with phone security. Discovering your niche allows you to better understand your client needs and to provide the specialized support that will make you stand out.
Security can be a sensitive subject, especially if a business is coming to you fresh from a data breach or other cybersecurity challenge. Take time to understand their needs. What drives their business? What has brought them to the point of seeking outside security services? Listening is key. When you are able to balance your industry knowledge with an understanding of the client’s concerns, you can establish a trusting relationship.
Additionally, customers will be more trusting of someone with experience and professionalism. As you develop your business, take the time to build a relationship with each customer. The more trusting customers you have, the more likely that new customers will see you as worth trusting, as well.
Many potential customers are intimidated by the thought of implementing new security solutions. They fear that the process will be intrusive, expensive, and complicated to learn. The very thought of implementation disrupting their workflow for weeks on end is enough to put off many prospective clients. (Continuum shares How to overcome objections when selling managed services.) By highlighting the simple ways that security solutions can be integrated into existing infrastructures and processes, you can help to shift the focus from challenges to possibilities. By emphasizing the process you can help customers understand how their business will adapt to a new security paradigm.
Keep in mind that all clients are different. While some clients are satisfied with the plan you lay out, others will continually seek more information and planning before they feel confident to commit (Check out these 5 secrets to managed security services selling success). Some customers will want to develop a threat model and require forecasting and surveillance of the market for other breaches. Understanding what each client needs and what you are willing to offer will help ensure that the relationship is successful.
Educate potential (and existing) customers
Yet, cybersecurity threats are ever-present and changing all the time. As a result, potential and existing customers need to be educated about what threats they face and what solutions you offer. Existing customers need to understand new and evolving risks and how your security services and solutions will adapt to meet them. Take the opportunity to inform and educate how to spot common threats, and empower your clients to take the next step to protect their business against potential future threats.
Related reading: 10 cyber security trends to look out for in 2019
Focus on outcomes
Security is not a checkbox and it is not just about big events. Security services are about keeping businesses focused on what they care about: their business and offloading the security operations to your expert hands. This is your opportunity to share your value proposition. Security service is about business efficiency just as much as it is about risks. The outcome of a security agreement is knowledge, preparation, and readiness. Potential deliverables for a business will be a disaster recovery plan, a training program and upgrade system. Further, as a part of this preparation, clients will gain new insights into their business by evaluating their weak points, the priorities of each of their systems and what their assets are so that they can develop a thorough and rigorous plan with their security partner. It is also worth considering the monetary outcomes for these businesses. For many businesses, there is a definite return on investment by adding outsourced services like SaaS-based security, cybersecurity, SOCaaS, and cloud monitoring. These plans and rubrics and programs are all concrete outcomes of a security relationship, but there is something more: peace of mind.
Related reading: How SOCaaS improves your margins
6 things to look for in a SOCaaS partner