If you’re an IT vendor, I know you’re looking to snag your dream MSP. Unfortunately, so are tens of thousands of others.
If closing the deal seems like a bit of an uphill battle, you’re mostly right. There’s tough competition and tons of options. However, figuring out what to say to attract, hold the attention of, and get a second meeting with that MSP you’re just dying to close, really isn’t rocket science.
Five Elements of a Great Pitch
- Get their attention. This is where your magic trick comes in; that compelling, unforgettable hook that leaves them with no doubt that they need whatever it is you’re selling. Be sure to include a quick note on who the heck you are, and why they should care.
- Tell them what’s in it for them. Be succinct. Save the long back story, bells and whistles of the tech for another time. For now, tell your potential partner how you’ll solve their problem and help their business grow. Get back to the basics! It’s amazing how many people dance around this, make it overly flowery, or leave it out entirely.
- Give them the CliffsNotes of what your tech offers. What’s the problem, and how does your product solve it? It’s kind of like your business model in a nutshell. Potential partners or investors want and need to know the bottom line – don’t go into lengthy detail here about exactly how things work. Keep it short and sweet, emphasizing how it will increase their bottom line.
- Remind them why your solution is the best solution. Show your passion! And your ability to solve problems creatively. If you’ve got a great customer story, throw it in here. Let them know that you’re not just passionate about your product, but for the problem itself.
- Call to action. Every piece of marketing collateral should have a clear, concise CTA, and your pitch is no different. Tell them what you want them to do. Learn more? Book a meeting? Invest? Don’t be shy. Be personable and gracious, yet undeniable.
I’ll also note that a pitch can be a conversation. So listen…don’t just talk and talk and talk. Ask your audience questions. Show that you’re interested in their distinct experience. Be curious.
Oh, and one more tip: Limit the time! During our online Pitch events, we tell vendors that they need to make their pitch in just seven minutes. We all have places to be, meetings to get to, phone calls to make and emails to send; we don’t want to spend even half an hour listening to people go on and on. Keep it simple. Seven minutes should be more than enough time to make an impression. And if it doesn’t, well, it’s time to start over.
For more insight into the pitch process, I love this article from Inc.com. It’s not specific to the IT Channel, but there are still some great takeaways for entrepreneurs, and things that you’ll want to think more about.
The perfect pitch gives you a good rep in MSP circles. They’ll remember you, and even if your product or service isn’t right for them, they’re likely to pass your credentials along to someone they know who will fit better.
With over 20 years of experience in the tech industry, I’ve co-created channel programs that went on to generate more than $5 billion in revenue, consulted with thousands of companies in the IT/MSP channel and public sector marketplaces, and built (and later sold) one of the fastest-growing cybersecurity companies in the IT channel.
I’ve been on the vendor side, and I’ve been on the side of the MSPs. I’m also an investor, so I’ve heard too many pitches to remember (and, honestly, very few of them have been memorable).
So now I devote my time to helping connect MSPs and vendors in a meaningful way that benefits everyone. Pitching can be stressful, but if you’ve properly prepared yourself—and your pitch—you should start getting some traction, and finding the business connection you’ve been dreaming of.
Let’s do this,
Be sure to reach out if you have questions about pitching, and sign up for our next (free!) Pitch event – happening April 29th.