Key Takeaways from the World Backup Day Global Partner Panel Discussion 

In our recent global panel discussion (OnDemand), we gained valuable insights from our international partner community, delving deep into strategies to enhance customer engagement around data protection. Our discussions covered many important topics, from navigating local compliance and regulations to leveraging emerging technologies. We asked our panelists for their advice to the channel community on staying ahead with data protection, and below is what they had to say:  

Be open and honest to drive trust

With customers having many options in where and how they receive their IT services – it is important for MSPs to drive trust as a competitive advantage. Kenneth Tooke, Director at Halycon MIS, LLC shared transparency as a key way to achieve this:  

“Be open and honest. It’s not the technology, it’s the people, so communication is key to nurturing those long-lasting relationships.” 

This highlights that the trust you can provide on a personal level, ensures you have long-lasting business relationships. 

Be prepared – know your data protection product

Picture this – You receive an urgent email from your largest customer, seeking your help to recover a lost file for an upcoming business presentation. They tell you that they last saw this file in their OneDrive – or was it their email?  It is this common experience where data recovery becomes critical and your ability to recover data fast gets tested. This is where preparation is key. 

Jeff Rash, Senior Principal Consultant at Imperitiv Solutions shared:

“Make sure you understand the backup product you are using. Test your backups so that you are confident it works and are aware of the speed of restoration.” 

This is where having a process to perform restoration tests can help ensure that you understand how your data protection solution works so that you are well prepared in these timely and tense situations

Meet your customers where they are  

Adapting to technology changes is not always straightforward, especially for those customers who need to manage multiple priorities like staying compliant, purchasing cyber insurance, or even embracing new tech like AI. As a trusted advisor, meeting your customers where they are is important. Danny Stacey, Enterprise Account Manager at Transparity pointed out:

“The first step can often seem ‘scary’ and unless you can translate needs effectively to the customer, it won’t work.”  

Try to advise without being too pushy because these are complicated conversations and it’s not always easy for businesses to pivot. It’s a journey, he continued. This is why it is important to have a strong appreciation of your customers‘ current circumstances. 

Keep it simple

To educate effectively, it is good to slowly introduce your customers to more technical concepts each time you advise them. When having complex conversations centered around tough topics like compliance it is always best to simplify the discussion. To do this, consider the big picture and make it more relatable by breaking it into smaller ideas.  

Mark Hoeffle, Founder of IT Booster GmbH described this strategy when he said:

“We start the conversation at a high level because it can be complex from the customers‘ standpoint. For example, by simplifying the compliance conversation into meaningful steps, we provide clarity in getting the customer to comply by discussing the outcomes and benefits of implementing such policies.” 

By keeping things relatable, you can evolve every customer touchpoint into a meaningful discussion that drives understanding and elicits trust between you and your customers.  

Transform routine conversations into customer consultations 

Take advantage of every customer check-in to educate and inform your customers of where they are in their data protection. A part of being proactive is to regularly remind customers of any shifting requirements, gaps in coverage, or changes inside their environment. 

Chris Hales, Senior Cloud Consultant at Cubesys highlighted:

“Being a trusted advisor is a very powerful position to be in, but it is also easily lost if you are not being proactive in having data protection conversations.”

This underscores the value of leveraging every touch point productively and purposefully. 

Give your customers peace of mind 

Simon Gibson, Managing Director of Rocket IT NZ had some sound advice for MSPs:

“Choose a product, make sure it works properly, ensure that you can stand behind it, and then go with it.”

Having a solid backup from a trusted Partner is key. Keep testing those restores to give your customers peace of mind.  No one can guarantee that something will not happen along the line.  It could be a breach; it could be data loss or even deletion. No one can say 100% so it is important to make data protection your FIRST priority. 

Get certified! Elevate your advisor role 

The data protection conversation is evolving. Today, mastering effective customer engagement demands navigating an interplay of technological advancements, regulatory frameworks, and risk management strategies. Embrace proactive measures and educate, to empower your customers in safeguarding their sensitive data. To take the first step toward elevating your advisor role and expertise, sign up for the SkyKick Sales Professional and Technical certifications to get started. Additionally, if you would like to watch our recent Partner Panel Discussion, it’s now available on demand.