Vendors and operators can use our strategic checklist to drive opportunities in the MSP space

11 July 2022 | SMB IT

Li Lin

Article | PDF (2 pages) | Infrastructure| IT and Managed Services

"Knowing how to effectively pinpoint revenue growth opportunities is a key challenge that many vendors face."


Our recent SMB technology demand studies suggest that managed services continue to be a top IT priority for small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs). We believe that the continued trend of working from home, combined with SMBs’ need for remotely managed workloads, will spur growth in SMB spending on managed services. In addition, we expect that managed service providers (MSPs) will become SMBs’ preferred channel partners.

Figure 1 is taken from the latest iteration of our SMB Technology Forecaster. It shows that SMB spending on cloud and managed services via the MSP channel worldwide is anticipated to grow by 16% in the next 5 years. Spending via other channels (such as value-added resellers, vendors and telecoms operators) is expected to grow by only 11% during the same time period.

Figure 1: SMB spending on cloud and managed service solutions, worldwide, 2021 and 2026


Success requires precision

The large number of SMBs worldwide (141 million in 2021) provides vendors with many challenges because it is not a one-size-fits-all market. The MSP ecosystem is also highly fragmented. The key challenge that many vendors face is pinpointing where the revenue growth opportunities are. Effectively identifying and navigating growth opportunities requires precise, granular and impactful market insights.

There are several critical stages to identifying opportunities in the MSP ecosystem

Our experience shows that opportunities within the MSP ecosystem are underpinned by three distinct stages. Each requires precise, fact-based insights.

Vendors must first identify the market opportunity for their products. This requires them to quantify the total addressable market (TAM) by country, business size and vertical. Next, they must develop an effective partner strategy that aligns with SMBs’ buying behaviour and solution priorities. The final stage relates to the fact-based messaging that vendors must create to drive awareness and engagement.

Vendors should use our checklist to build an effective go-to-market strategy

The checklist below provides an outline of the insights that support each of the stages listed above and can therefore be used to build an effective MSP go-to-market strategy.

  • Understanding the market potential
    • What is the market size and TAM?
    • Where will the revenue growth come from?
    • What are SMBs’ preferred purchase channels?
    • How many MSPs can I target in each country/state?
  • Developing effective partner strategies
    • How do I partner with MSPs?
    • What products and services do I need to offer and how does that vary by business size/vertical?
    • How can I enable my channel partners (MSPs) to sell more?
    • Where should I allocate my sales resources?
  • Creating impactful marketing, messaging and enablement
    • How should MSPs market my product to the end customer?
    • How can I help MSPs to increase engagement?
    • What are the most impactful messaging concepts?
    • How and where is my MSP marketing budget best spent?

Gain from our MSP ecosystem know-how

We offer clients fact-based knowledge and know-how gained by analysing the global SMB space for over 25 years. Throughout this time, we have been tracking and surveying the MSP ecosystem and advising many of the top solutions providers within this space. Our insights play a key role in equipping our clients with the ability to develop effective MSP go-to-market strategies.

We welcome the opportunity to schedule a briefing to explain not only how this checklist can assist you in capturing the almost USD1 trillion MSP revenue opportunity, but also how we can help you to build an impactful MSP go-to-market strategy. To book a consultation, please contact Bob Takacs.

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