How to ease SMB data management fears

Posted by Manny Veiga on Aug 11, 2014 11:57:00 AM

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A recent survey touched on the data security risks that IT managers fear most, finding that a big point of concern for many businesses is that they don't know where their data is being stored.

That's a key pain point that you could use to frame the conversations you have with prospective clients around data protection.

The study was performed by The Ponemon Institute on behalf of data integration provider Informatica. According to the report, the top IT fears included:

  • Not knowing where data is stored (57 percent)
  • Moving to mobile platforms (51 percent)
  • Mistakes made by temporary or contract workers (50 percent)
  • Uncertainty around how their data is being managed by outsourced servicers (42 percent)

On top of these findings, the survey revealed that 24 percent of respondents did not know where their structured data is stored while 41 percent did not know where their unstructured data lives. 

Data management worries lead to lack of confidence in IT managers' ability to identify a data breach, according to the report. Only 26 percent of respondents said they were confident in their ability to identify a structured data breach, while 12 percent said they could detect an unstructured data breach if needed.

While the report suggests SMBs also lack confidence in their IT services provider's ability to manage their data (see the 42 percent bullet above), there is still opportunity here for MSPs. The truth is, you still have an opportunity to earn a prospect's trust if you know how to advise potential clients around data management and protection.

Our Co-Founder and VP of Channel Development Neal Bradbury touched on this in a recent guest post for Business Solutions Magazine. Neal suggested questions to ask prospects around their current backup and recovery solution, as these can reveal weaknesses in their current setup. 

The questions include:

  • What kind of security do you get from your current provider?
  • If your local server crashes, how fast can you recover?
  • Are you able to remotely monitor and manage your IT environment?
  • What do you do for data archiving?
  • Are you performing regular disaster recovery testing?

As Neal explains in greater detail, these questions can reveal opportunities to develop a better upfront pitch that asserts your businesses as a data management authority. 

Demonstrating your expertise as an IT provider is ultimately the best way to earn your SMBs' trust and put their data management fears to rest.

It also puts you on the road to developing long-term, sustainable SMB relationships built on trust, the type we suggested you build toward in our sales e-book.

When you have a stable roster of happy businesses who trust you to manage their data, you have advocates and success stories you can leverage to prove your salt to new clients.

At the end of the day, IT fear doesn't have to be an enemy to your businesses' growth potential. And in fact, if you have a good story on how you put your clients' worries to bed, you could turn fear into an ally.

Photo: Carlos Martz on Flickr, via CC Attribution 2.0

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