Paul Green's MSP Marketing Podcast

Episode 17: How to sell more cybersecurity

Paul Green's MSP Marketing Podcast
Episode 17: How to sell more cybersecurity
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In this week's episode

  • There is an apparent shortage of cybersecurity talent and skills which is one of the key challenges MSPs have today in providing cybersecurity services to their customers. Special guest JP Kehoe from Skout joins Paul to explain how you can provide your clients with a better solution
  • Everyone has lost out to a competitor at some point. And Paul explains a few simple techniques that can help stop this happening and make your MSP stand out from the crowd
  • Also in this week's show Paul tells you about a website where your clients can find out for themselves just how rubbish their passwords actually are. And answers a question for an MSP on how to track his competitors

Show notes

Episode transcription

Voiceover: Made in the UK for MSPs around the world. This is Paul Green's MSP Marketing podcast. Paul Green: Here we go for another week then. This is what's coming up in today's show. JP Kehoe: There is a tremendous shortage of cybersecurity talent and skills. That's one of the key challenges MSPs have today in providing cybersecurity services to their customers. Paul Green: I'm also going to tell you about a website where your clients can find out for themselves just how rubbish their passwords actually are, and we're answering a question for an MSP on how he can track his competitors. Voiceover: Paul Green's MSP Marketing podcast. Paul Green: I think it's fairly well established now that one of the biggest marketing challenges for any MSP is differentiating themselves from all of their competitors in the mind of the prospect. Because the problem starts with the prospect and most average business owners, managers, the decision makers that you want to reach, as we've discussed before, they don't know what they don't know about technology and about it support. So they will look at your business and you could have 20 staff and a building and 24 hour support and they can't really see the difference between that and all of the other businesses in the area that do what you do, and they do different flavours of what you do. But for someone outside of our world, they don't get that. And of course add to that the fact that there are no barriers to entry into this market, anyone can set themselves up as an IT support company from their bedroom and theoretically compete with you. This makes it a very hard thing to do. Paul Green: And add in as well, there is this other thing that most MSPs are really bad at marketing, and are really bad at looking at things from other people's points of view, which is a core fundamental marketing skill. So this is where you need to differentiate yourself in a whole series of different ways which are very smart. I'm a big fan of videos because videos give you instant differentiation, particularly if you get videos featuring your clients, so it's your clients on the screen talking to your prospects, it's a very smart thing to do. And of course no one has your clients except you, so that is a great differentiation. Paul Green: I think also when you're getting to the prospecting stage, and particularly when you're up against two or three other players, you've got to be a little bit more cute than them. Got to be a bit smarter than them. So most people will do the same thing. They'll go and have a meeting, they'll put in a proposal, they'll follow up that proposal and that'll be about it. I think you've got to ask yourself, not only what can we do to be different before we have a prospect meeting, but once we've met with someone, what makes the difference? For example, could you be the MSP that, when someone has booked a prospect meeting, you send them an impact box, which we've talked about on previous podcasts, but you send them a box of stuff, and there might be some videos in there and you can either do that as an old fashion DVD or you could do a link to some online videos or better still put it in one of those video presentation cards. Paul Green: Could you send them some chocolate? Could you send them a brochure or some details of you and your team and say, "Hey, we're looking forward to meeting you next Wednesday. Here's some details about us and what our clients say." Send them a testimonials book. Imagine if you did that just before you'd even met them. That would be so, so powerful. And then once you've actually been to see them, what do you leave them on the day? You've already given them a brochure and something else, don't really want to just give them a business card. What else could you give them on the day? How about a copy of your book? Because of course you do need a book. You need to be the author of your own book. It's an amazing marketing tool, and you could actually sign it there and then as as the author, sign the cover of the book or the inside of the book and give it to them during that prospect meeting. Paul Green: Now that might seem a little presumptuous to you and a little pretentious, but actually that's a very powerful positioning thing to show that you're the author of something and you've gone and signed the book and given it to them there and then at the prospect meeting. Then what else could you do differently from there? A couple of my clients are experimenting now with sending things afterwards. Some are doing the impact boxes. In the UK there's a website called cakesnextday.com which allows you to put a personalised message on a giant cake and send that over to someone. That's a very clever thing that you could do. What if you followed it up with more chocolate? Obviously you wouldn't do an impact box both sides of the prospect meeting, but you could send them something. Paul Green: I would certainly, absolutely, send them a printed copy of the proposal. Now you might use something like betterproposals.io or one of the other many proposal software services that are available, and certainly getting people to use and look at a proposal online where you can track what they're doing is a very smart thing to do. But I would always, always print off a proposal, high quality print, really make the packaging really high quality, one of those nice cardboard outers. Really put some time and effort into it and send a copy to them, either first class post or maybe even courier it to them or drop it off to them, again with something else. Because although we want to know if they've read it online, we also absolutely want to make sure that they have actually read it and nothing beats a physical print thing sitting on their actual desk. Paul Green: So there's just a few ideas there and I bet you and your team could come up with so many more ideas. But where you've got this common problem that they can't tell the difference between you and your competitors, it only takes being slightly different from everyone else to have a real impact. It's really exciting when you think about it. Voiceover: Here's this week's clever idea. Paul Green: What we've got here is a very elegant answer to the problem of your clients using very, very weak passwords. It's a website called howsecureismypassword.net, and it's very simple. They go in and they enter their password and it tells them how long it would take a computer to brute force crack it. I've got the website up here. If I type in... Let's type in fluffy123 and it says here it would take a computer about 42 minutes to crack your password. So let's iterate that. We'll take off the three and put on a four. No, it's still 42 minutes, because of course it's based on length. So let's add a nine to that. It would take a computer one day to crack your password. Paul Green: What this is encouraging your clients to do is to use longer passwords and hopefully maybe even some more complex ones as well. Now it does say at the bottom it's for educational purposes only, and it's sponsored by Dashlane, which is of course a password manager. And yes, you're going to look at that and think, hang on a second, that's just surely sending passwords over the internet? Although it does say at the bottom that nothing is sent over the internet. But the point is you can demonstrate to your clients, in front of them, pull up this website and say, "Look, let me, let me do a password here. If we generate a 16 digit password..." In fact, let me do it now, I'm going to go to the random... Here we go. Passwordsgenerator.net. I'm going to generate a random 16 digit password and copy that, paste that into How Secure Is My Password, and according to this, a 16 digit random password would take a computer 41 trillion years to crack that password. Paul Green: I think that's the point where you can show your client that there's some very, very, very complex passwords which are so much more uncrackable or less crackable than fluffy123. That's the point, is to show them this and off the back of that, maybe you could then sell them a password manager, because isn't that really something we want all the clients to have? We want them all to have a password manager managed by you to give them more control over their passwords and of course more control when their staff leave. One final thing on How Secure Is My Password, go in and put in just random characters and you get some amazing numbers of years. We are up to quadrillion years here, and then quintillion years, sextillion years, and if I put it in, if I just keep putting characters in, I don't know if I can even say this. 805 novemvigintillion. If you know how to pronounce that, you're a better person than I am. It's a very fun website, this, and actually if it can drive some monthly recurring revenue for you as well, everyone wins. Voiceover: Paul's blatant plug. Paul Green: A quick heads up that this one today is just for my listeners in the UK. Now I'm guessing that your biggest challenge in getting new clients for your MSP isn't actually getting the prospects to say yes. If you can get in front of the right people at the right time, then you'll get the sale. If you're like most MSPs in the UK, your biggest issue actually is generating good quality leads and then getting those people to agree to sales meetings at exactly the right point in the sales cycle. So if this is the issue in your business, then join me for something new. It's called the MSP Get New Clients Roadshow, and it's a new event I'm running through to the summer of 2020. Paul Green: It's three hours of your day. You join me at a hotel near you, get a working lunch thrown in, and I'll show you a proven five step system. It's being used right now by dozens of MSPs across the UK. And the good news is even if you find marketing baffling, I will do it in a way that both educates you and entertains you. I've got a whole series of dates right through to the summer all across the UK. I'm so sorry, I'm not going international with this at this stage, it's just in the UK. If you want to see all the details for that, you just gone to paulgreensMSPmarketing.com. Don't forget the S on that. PaulgreensMSPmarketing.com, and then either go into the navigation and tap on free marketing lunch or just go to paulgreensMSPmarketing.com/lunch. You'll see all the details on how you can claim your free place. Voiceover: The big interview. JP Kehoe: Paul, how are you? My name is JP Kehoe. I'm the general manager for Skout Cybersecurity here in Europe, and we help MSPs go to market with a managed security service. Paul Green: So we all know that cybersecurity is enormous. It's getting bigger almost every week. The opportunity's getting bigger, the the tactics being used are getting big. Everything about it is absolutely growing, and I think all MSPs now, whether or not the actively on board and selling it, they can see that this is an enormous opportunity, A to protect their clients, and B, to generate more of that lovely monthly recurring revenue. From your point of view, you specialise in cybersecurity, it's all your business does. What kind of trends have you seen in the marketplace? JP Kehoe: There's a tremendous shortage of cybersecurity talent and skills, and the personnel that are required to enable MSPs to deliver that expertise is quite expensive. Staff are hard to train and retain. That's one of the key challenges MSPs have today in providing cybersecurity services to their customers. Paul Green: The end users, the business decision makers that MSPs wants to reach, what's happened to their awareness over the last few years? You would imagine they'd be a bit more aware, but is it still enough to trigger more and more of them into action? JP Kehoe: There certainly has been an increase in awareness. It probably falls into three buckets for them and customers. One is general awareness of cybersecurity within both their sector and their market, or indeed where they've had an issue, it certainly brings a awareness to the fore. Number two, regulation now is driving a lot of requirements for companies to have managed cybersecurity service in place and to increase their cyber posture. And then number three, we're seeing more and more third party due diligence, the need to have a mature cyber program in place, and MSPs are getting these questions. And as I said, the challenges for MSPs is providing that service at an easy and affordable way for the further end customers, and as you just mentioned on the recurring revenue, making sure that you tie that in with any other managed service that you have. Paul Green: I think the question that most MSPs want answered is how do you sell more cybersecurity? In this world where decision makers are becoming more aware, but they're still very unaware, it's still not a big thing to them, they're willing to take huge risks with their system. How do you educate them about cybersecurity and ultimately sell more of it? JP Kehoe: Well, they're both absolutely tied together. So education is key. Definitely having a conversations with your customers around cybersecurity, the issues that you're seeing across your own customer base, asking them questions, trying to understand their network, try to understand their critical data and how you're supporting them in building those concentric rings of security around that data, whether it's a firewall or endpoint or other supports or point solutions that you might have in place. I think after that, then making sure that you educate around the importance of having visibility under security logs emanating from those point solutions. JP Kehoe: The average time to detect a breach now is 197 days. It's a long, long time. Making sure that you have the right partner in place then as well to provide a managed security service. So they're the two areas, education number one, that you have those conversations with your customers, and then number two, having the right partner with you to support you in those conversations. So there are MSSPs out there that have resources available to support you having those conversations and building up that credibility in your marketplace and having the right dedicated sales and marketing support. Paul Green: Tell us briefly what Skout does to help MSPs. JP Kehoe: Our platform uses a multi-tenant approach that makes it easy for MSPs to include those advanced security tools, the threat intelligent feeds, and that around the clock 24/7 security offering. So we provide that as a service to our customers, our MSP customers, and getting the right partnerships in place to support them going to market and answering some of those questions that your customers have. Paul Green: And what's your website's address, JP? JP Kehoe: Getskout.com. So that's G-E-T-S-K-O-U-T dot com. If you go there, you'll learn all about the company and there's a partner section that allow you to register some interest, and we're here to help and support, grow your business and grow your recurring revenue. Voiceover: Paul Green's MSP Marketing podcast. Ask Paul anything. Jack Peploe: Hi, my name is Jack Peploe from Evaporate. How do I keep track of what my competitors are doing? Paul Green: Great question Jack. Thank you. I do always say that we shouldn't be obsessed about what our competitors are doing. Better to be obsessed with our own business than with our competitors. But at the same time, we want to know exactly what our competitors are doing just so we can keep track of the marketplace. So there's two core fundamental things that I advise you do for all of your main competitors. By the way, when I say main competitors, I mean the ones that you lose business to. You can't track every single MSP in your market, because you just spend all day tracking your competitors. So pick the two, three or maybe four that if you're going to lose business to someone, it's going to be them. Or if you're up against them in competition, you know you've got to work hard. Paul Green: The first thing that you should do is set up a Google alert for them. So just Google the phrase Google alerts. You go in, you can create an alert about anything. What Google will do is it will email you when it finds that phrase in new pages. You put in your competitors' names... Now make sure you put them in inverted commas, in quote marks, because then you'll get the exact match. And I recommend that you pick the daily digest option rather than instant results so you're not inundated. But that's quite good for Google. If it spots any mentions of your competitors anywhere, it will send those to you. Pro tip, by the way, is to put your own name in there, both your actual physical name and obviously the name of your business and set up Google alerts for those. Paul Green: The second thing that you should be doing is to do some kind of web page change monitoring. Now there are some websites which will do this for you for free. Watchthatpage.com, which looks a bit like a website from 1990, or at least 1999, but it's actually quite a functional website and you put in a URL and it monitors it and if it's changed it sends you an email. There is another one which again looks a bit old fashioned, it's called followthatpage.com. It's exactly the same. Now these are free. For for a couple of websites, these are free. There are alternatives that you can find, which of course they all have subscription packages. Now I haven't used these, but fluxguard.com is one, and then you've got Agenty, agent with Y on the end agenty.com. Then you've got visualping.io. Now Visual Ping is slightly different, because whereas all the others are based on text changes. Visual Ping will tell you about any visual changes to the page, so obviously that will be some text changes, but also if they change images or graphics or anything like that. Paul Green: There are loads and loads of different services around, and it's certainly worth setting them up just to see exactly what it is your competitors are doing. If you have to pick specific pages, I would go for their homepage and their about us page at, and if they've got a pricing page, of course you would set it up on there as well. Voiceover: How to contribute to the show. Paul Green: What you think about this podcast is very important to me. So would you drop me an email please and just tell me what you think. Give me the bad things as well as the good things. You can reach me, hello@paulgreensMSPmarketing.com. Voiceover: Coming up next week. James Lyon: We're offering a refresh completely free, which would encourage them to stay on board as well. It's very much about long term revenue and that long term profit generation as well. Paul Green: That's James Lyon from MSP White Label Websites. He's going to be here next week talking about a new monthly recurring revenue stream for you. We're also going to be talking about how, as business owners, our relationship with money is completely skewed, and a way for us to reset our brains and I've got an amazing idea for you. It's some physical help desk buttons that you can attach to your clients' computers. See you next week. Voiceover: Made in the UK for MSPs around the world. Paul Green's MSP Marketing Podcast.
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