MSPs: is your ‘land and expand’ strategy ready for the cloud?
We have talked before about the need for MSPs to evolve their service offerings. The needs of their enterprise clients are changing as a growing majority adopt multi-cloud IT strategies. It’s a combination of trying to remain relevant with existing customers and standing out from the crowd with new prospects.
“Land and expand” is a familiar term for anyone in sales. Secure a customer with a small-scale engagement that minimizes their business risk and provides you with an opportunity to prove your organization as a reliable partner. As the customer’s comfort level grows in hand with your team’s knowledge of their needs, expand the scope of the engagement.
For an MSP, it’s a proven approach that is well-suited to delivering XaaS – Anything as a Service.
You know that if you want to grow your business with existing customers in a predictable fashion, you can’t expect them to be lobbying you for additional services. It’s your job to lobby them by demonstrating how you can take more off their plate and provide additional backup (pun intended) to their internal IT capabilities.
Small to mid-sized enterprises are crying for help as they look to outsource more of their IT functions to the cloud. They need cost-savings and a trustworthy strategy that will address their own internal HR challenges with finding qualified IT personnel, while ensuring their business remain secure and operational around the clock.
According to Gartner, 28 per cent of current spending within key enterprise IT markets will shift to the cloud by 2022.
“(This) represents a critical period for traditional infrastructure providers, as competitors benefit from increasing cloud-driven disruption and spending triggers based on infrastructure asset expiration,” said Gartner research VP Michael Warrilow. “As cloud becomes increasingly mainstream, it will influence even greater portions of enterprise IT decisions, particularly in system infrastructure as increasing tension becomes apparent between on- and off-premises solutions.”
Take identity and access management – the connective tissue between an enterprise’s core IT functions and the workflows of its people. Or backup and recovery services. These are critical needs for any enterprise of any size, regardless of whether its IT needs are addressed entirely on the premises, in the cloud, or by some combination thereof.
As enterprises look to migrate these and other core IT functions to the cloud, they need the guidance of a trusted partner to help them devise and execute an effective cloud strategy. This provides the forward-looking MSP with a wealth of opportunity to grow its land and expand strategy.
Taking a reactive (or organic) approach, in which you wait for the glowing success of your standing engagement with the customer to entice them to come asking about what else you can do for them, is a slow and unpredictable way to grow your business.
You need to be more proactive. Invest the time and effort to expand the skillsets and capabilities of your team. Make the technology investments that will automate service provisioning and usage monitoring to deliver the efficiencies and cost-savings your customers need. This will also make your business more scalable, so it can confidently expand with little risk of choking on its own growth.