At the Canadian Channel Partners conference 2021, Xeo Marketing surveyed the attendees and found out that Referrals are the dominant way MSPs and VARs drive new business (82%). This is significantly higher than other marketing methods like email marketing (42%), social media (36%) and so on. 

Besides helping MSPs like yourself improve different marketing aspects, we would like to assist you to make the most out of their referrals. In this blog article, we will discuss:

  • How to get more referrals for your MSP business
  • And how to convert the referrals you have into customers

How to Get Referred More Often

Go above and beyond:

For your customers to refer your business, they have to trust you. And trust is something you have to earn. The best way to get referrals is to be a reliable IT advisor, deliver exceptional services and exceed your customers’ expectations.

Timing is everything

When to ask your customers for referrals is key. Don’t just ask for a favour, drop the question when your customers are happy with the result you brought them. 

Keep yourself on top of their mind

Make sure you stay in their mind so that when someone asks them if they know an IT expert, your company is the first name that pops up in their head.

Email marketing is a great way to remind your customers including your monthly recurring clients and one-time break-fix ones about your business. Bi-weekly or monthly emails sharing value-adding content like blog articles, alerts for cybercrime, etc. go a long way.

In addition, don’t be afraid to get personal. Send a message/email on their birthday, comment on their posts on social media, etc. The small efforts will reward you with new clients.

Take Advantage of LinkedIn and Alignable

A proactive approach is to look at your customers’ network and identify the potential clients you want to be referred to. LinkedIn and Alignable are the perfect tools to find referral opportunities. The next step is to pick the right time to ask for a referral.

Customize the incentive

Asking your customers for referrals means asking them for a favour, for their time to search their network and reach out to the potential ones. Extra work may not be on top of business owners’ priority lists.

Give them a bit of incentive. Tell them about a reward program that you have for referrers. You can also take it up a notch by customizing their rewards. Working with them gives you opportunities for small talks, learn about their interests, and give them something that they value. It doesn’t have to be expensive. 

Scratch their back first

Your customers need more business as well. Give them a referral first. This shows that you care about their business and builds a relationship with them. And when you drop the question, they’re more obligated to themselves to give back.

What If Your Customers Say No

Don’t worry when you receive a No (or worse, a polite Yes). You can come back to them in a few weeks with these ideas: 

  • Become a case study
  • Give you a review or testimonial
  • Fill out a survey for their feedback and experience with your services

Relevant Content: Client Testimonials in the MSP World: The Complete Guide

How to Convert the Referrals into New Customers:

Do your homework:

You definitely should research the leads before the first contact. Check out their website, understand what they do, a unique thing that they are really proud of their company and most importantly anticipate the IT problems they may be facing… This helps you make a good first impression and customize your pitch.

Prioritize the lead:

Waiting after being referred to a new lead is the worst thing you can do. The longer you wait, the colder the lead becomes. Do your research and pick up the phone. Your competitors won’t wait for you.


Rejections happen. Be sure to put the leads in the pipelines so that your sales team can follow up. They might be a great fit for you, but just aren’t ready the first time you make contact.

Thank your clients:

Don’t forget to thank your customers for referring you to a potential business, whether it works or not. Send them an incentive or a surprise gift. It feels good to be appreciated and they may send leads your way again!

At Xeo Marketing, we understand your business. If you need a hand with strategic planning, (re)branding, website design or executing Marketing activities, we can help!

Jack Tran

Jack Tran

Jack Tran is a Digital Marketing professional at Xeo Marketing & Strategic Consultancy. He has experience working on social media marketing and content marketing for a wide range of industries including Technology, Education, Hospitality and Fitness & Wellness. Jack is helping several clients at Xeo grow their digital presence and drive valuable leads with his expertise.

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