content marketing for managed services providers

MSP Content Marketing: Where Do I Start?

As you know, marketing and promoting your MSP presents a number of challenges. There are emails to be written, whitepapers to produce, a website to be maintained, and numerous other factors.

It’s no wonder that one of the first things we often hear from MSPs who contact us is “we just don’t have time to do marketing.”

And that’s not really an excuse as much as it is a universal truth. Just keeping up with the day-to-day can take hours, and for those who are just wading into marketing territory, there is a learning curve that can take hundreds of hours to traverse.

One of the most common digital marketing challenges that business owners face is pretty straightforward:

What content should I be creating?

You know you should be posting to your blog. You know that you need to send out emails. You might even be trying to gain some traction on Facebook. But all of these endeavors hinge on one thing…

You need to have something to talk about!

When you’re tasked with putting out content on a regular basis, writer’s block is not an option. More importantly, you want to make sure that the content you’re putting time, effort, or money into can ultimately lead to new contracts. Toward that end, we’ve put together this list of helpful tips for creating content for your MSP. Enjoy!

Schedule Your Content Marketing

Like most business challenges, content creation can be easily overcome through planning. Your first step should be creating a content calendar to define what you’ll be creating over the next few months, whether it be blog posts, videos, or emails.

Your content calendar will serve as a roadmap for all of your marketing activity in those coming months. To get the most from your efforts, you want to make sure everything you’re doing ties together to create effective lead generation funnels.

For instance, if you determine that next month’s focus will be cybersecurity, you already know that you need to create a landing page, email campaign, blog posts, and other assets for that topic. No guesswork required.

By taking on this topic in bulk, you maximize your marketing results. Your emails can link to your blog posts. Your blog posts can link to your landing page, as can your social media posts. Everything integrates and everything plays a role in guiding your traffic through the buyer’s journey.

Your content calendar doesn’t need to be complicated — a simple spreadsheet will do. You’re welcome to download this example content calendar for your own use (Excel spreadsheet).

Keep Sources of Inspiration Handy

Once you know your high-level topic (cybersecurity, in the previous example), you’ll need to figure out what stories you’re going to tell or what news you’re going to share.

This is where going through recent news alerts and competitors’ blog posts can help you stay current and ride the wave of a popular topic. We’ve created a helpful nexus of such information in our Situation Room, which aggregates news feeds on MSP-focused topics. Feel free to bookmark the page and use it for your own topic research.

You’ll also want to go through your reviews, case studies, and customer feedback to find anything that fits the topic. If you don’t have anything to use for social proof, make an active effort to get it. Reach out to your clients for testimonials or write up a case study to support your claims.

Be Unique and Valuable

Your content must provide something to the user if you want it to contribute to your marketing efforts. Even if you’re shooting for SEO improvements, you’ll want to make sure you’re only sharing relevant, worthwhile content.

Try to focus on a few types of content that are heavily searched and consistently gain traction:

  • Reviews and comparisons
  • Simple how-to guides that offer immediate gains or value
  • Content that’s humorous or entertaining
  • Roundup articles that combine the input of several experts into one location

It’s also a good idea to make your presentation unique. Incorporate your branding and tone. It’s okay to let your personality show through your content — that’s what makes good content stand out from the endless sea of boring, uninspired junk that’s all over the internet.

Take It One Step at a Time

All of this might seem daunting, but it’s much easier to tackle when you work through it piece by piece. Start with planning, then move on to putting together your first piece of content. If you’re outsourcing the work to a freelance writer or other third party, the content calendar will keep everyone working toward the big-picture strategy.

If you find yourself struggling to get momentum, reach out to the MSP marketing pros at Your Sales Energy. We’ll be glad to help evaluate your marketing needs and recommend a course of action.

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