Memo to MSPs: Calm Down Your Customers
Wall Street seems to have everybody on edge. The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped roughly 630 points today, and cloud computing stocks fell nearly 10 percent during today’s market sell-off, according to the Talkin’ Cloud Stock Index, operated by MSPmentor’s sister site. For MSPs there’s mixed news ahead… Rising interest rates could pressure expansion plans, pending M&A (merger and acquisition) deals and overall profits. But MSPs still have the opportunity to give their customers peace of mind during stressful economic times.
As I mentioned last week, the best MSPs expect to grow 30 percent or more this year. So generally speaking I remain upbeat about the SMB technology market. But I certainly can’t put my head in the sand after today’s Wall Street sell-off.
Now is the time to pick up the phone and check in with each of your SMB customers. Better yet, schedule face-to-face visits. Reinforce the predictable nature of your IT services — you’re not going to blindside your customers with unexpected bills, especially as the U.S. economy sorts through the current debt situation. In short, you’re the most predictable partner on the block.
But are your customers predictable?
- Will they maintain current staffing levels? Will they delay new hires or potentially outsource more IT services?
- Will they maintain current device levels — servers, desktops, mobile devices, network infrastructure? Or will they unplug portions of the network as they rethink staffing levels?
- Will they march forward with pending IT projects or put them on the back burner until Wall Street’s turbulence settles down a bit?
- Are you enforcing your own billing policies and collecting revenues in a timely manner?
Poke around and ask the key questions that will (A) allow you to take inventory of your customers’ businesses while also (B) determining the health of your monthly recurring revenue (MRR) streams.
The last thing we all want is a self-fulfilling prophecy, where the financial media predicts — and actually triggers — a double-dip recession. So get ahead of the media. Offer your customers the calm, reassuring long-term business and technology guidance you’ve always offered.
And most of all: Don’t go silent right now.