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The Ultimate Guide to Success in Managed IT Services

What are the fundamentals to building a profitable managed IT services business? Keep reading to discover the four key ingredients for success.

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Joseph Tavano

Joseph Tavano is Senior Content Marketing Manager at Continuum, with more than 14 years of experience in content creation, content marketing, event marketing, marketing communications, demand generation and editorial across a range of industries. He is the author of several eBooks, blog posts, thought-leadership articles and other marketing and product collateral that enable Continuum partners and IT service providers in the channel to make their businesses stronger and grow their profits. In 2016, he launched the Continuum Podcast Network, which publishes multiple shows every week and reaches tens of thousands of IT professionals every year. A native of Boston, he holds bachelors in English and History from Suffolk University and resides in Salem, Massachusetts.
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Recent Posts

Evolution of The Managed IT Services Provider

Posted by Joseph Tavano on January 29, 2019


As the progress of technology marches on, managed IT services providers are tasked with staying ahead of the curve and meeting changes as they come. As part of this continual adaptation, new services and solutions are changing the fundamental purpose of MSPs, challenging the industry to evolve yet again.

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Topics: Business Development and Growth

2019 Will Be (Another) Year of Security: Will You Be Ready?

Posted by Joseph Tavano on December 18, 2018


In the early 2000s, cloud architecture and the advent of cloud-supported technology poised IT service providers to expect a major disruption in both their service delivery and business models. That didn’t happen; cloud-based technology integrated into the channel comfortably, supporting and strengthening IT business objectives and evolving the role of the managed IT service provider.

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Topics: Cybersecurity and Threat Management, Managed Security Services

A 5-Step Guide to Going to Market with Your Security Solution

Posted by Joseph Tavano on December 4, 2018

A 5-Step Guide to Going to Market with Your Security Solution

Most MSPs who have some experience in the channel understand what it takes to start offering new products to their clients; whether it is a new service, an add-on or additional form of IT support, the rollout can differ greatly. However, when it comes to offering an advanced security solution, there is little comparison—it is an entire category of products and services that are being introduced.

In order to successfully go to market in the cyber security space, MSPs need to solidify a plan well in advance of their solution’s public availability.

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Topics: Managed Security Services, Cybersecurity and Threat Management, Sales and Marketing

13 Essentials for Building a Cyber Security Offering

Posted by Joseph Tavano on November 20, 2018

13 Essentials for Building a Cyber Security OfferingIn the modern world of advanced cyber security, you’ll need a lot more than consumer-grade antivirus and firewall applications to get the job done. Your clients have entrusted you with the logistics surrounding the safety and security of their IT environment, and to that end, you’ll need to arm yourself with the right stack of software and services to best protect them.

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Topics: Cybersecurity and Threat Management, Managed Security Services

Where Does the Managed Services Market Stand Today?

Posted by Joseph Tavano on November 6, 2018


In the last quarter of 2018, it should come as a surprise to no one that the managed services market is changing, and the catalyst for that change is cyber security. This year, market dynamics and emerging trends came to a head to cause meaningful disruption in the managed services in the industry. So, where does the managed services market stand today? To understand that, it’s important to see how we got here.

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Topics: Cybersecurity and Threat Management, Managed Security Services

Bridging the Chasm Between Lead Acquisition and the MSP Sale

Posted by Joseph Tavano on October 17, 2018

Bridging the Chasm Between Lead Acquisition and the MSP Sale

When asked about the lifecycle of a sale, it is common for many businesses to discuss a clear and strict division between the duties of marketing and of sales—marketing is responsible for attracting and acquiring leads, and sales is responsible for contacting those leads, qualifying them as interested prospects, and converting them into customers.

But what happens between the initial interaction and the close? How many prospects go cold or fall off the radar? How many hours are invested into prospects who inevitably walk away?

There’s a clear gap here, and there’s only so much that a pure sales approach can do to close it. And, with finite human resources in sales, there’s only so many calls that can be made. What’s needed to bridge that gap between lead acquisition and the sale is what’s known as lead nurturing.

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Topics: Sales and Marketing, Lead Generation, Inbound Marketing

Your Client Asks You to Explain the Cloud. What Do You Say?

Posted by Joseph Tavano on July 10, 2018

Your Client Asks You to Explain the Cloud. What Do You Say?

As an MSP, you are responsible for the endpoints and IT environments of many clients. You are their IT expert, their technical wizard, and their resource for all things with a screen and a plug.

But the technical world that you inhabit on a daily basis isn’t the same as the top-level user experience that your client sees every day. Depending on the industry, they may understand less about technology than you may realize, which can lead to unnecessary confusion when it comes time to discuss services, pricing and additional products like advanced security and cloud solutions.

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Topics: Cloud Computing, Sales and Marketing

Introducing the MSP's Guide to Targeting New Verticals

Posted by Joseph Tavano on June 5, 2018


The ability for an MSP to specialize and differentiate themselves from their competition is a major factor toward business growth. However, with IT services becoming increasingly commoditized, providers are converging under large-scale mergers and acquisitions. This leaves many MSPs looking for the right way forward to grow their business. For many MSPs, this means specializing managed IT services for specific vertically-aligned industries.

From technology needs, to regulatory concerns to highly specific RMM, security and BDR requirements, MSPs who specialize in a vertical must become experts within that field in the realm of IT. They will anticipate problems before they happen, resolve issues as they arise, and advise on the technology needs for the future—all of which requires industry-specific experience and knowledge. For the MSPs who take the time to accumulate these skillsets and earn a trusted reputation within the vertical, the ROI can be enormous.

It all starts with a first step, and our new eBook, Targeting New Verticals: Understanding MSP Opportunities and Go-to-Market Strategies, is the perfect place to consider and evaluate your next move.

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Topics: Vertical Alignment, Sales and Marketing, Revenue Growth and Profitability

4 Signs It’s Time for a Help Desk Partnership

Posted by Joseph Tavano on May 30, 2018

4 Signs It’s Time for a Help Desk Partnership

At a certain point in the growth of an MSP’s business, there comes a time where the demand for client support outpaces the time (and profitability) of existing MSP resources, ultimately resulting in the need for Help Desk capabilities.

But how should MSPs acquire these capabilities? There are a number of options available, from acquisition to partnership to building it out oneself. However, out of all these options, a partnership with an experienced Help Desk vendor can provide some of the best margins and ROI. Meanwhile, an acquisition can put a business into debt it may never recover from, and building out an in-house help desk solution can lead to skyrocketing general & administrative (G&A) expenses that may make business growth increasingly unprofitable.

So, when is it time to partner for Help Desk services? Here are four signs your MSP business may be ready.

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Topics: Help Desk, Vendor Management, Customer Service

May the Fourth Be With You! 7 Star Wars Characters That Are Just Like MSPs

Posted by Joseph Tavano on May 4, 2018

May the Fourth Be With You! 7 Star Wars Characters That Are Just Like MSPs

In honor of today officially being Star Wars Day, May the 4th (not to be outdone by Revenge of the Fifth), we decided to put together a list of all the ways that MSPs are just like characters in the Star Wars saga. There’s a lot that the galaxy far, far away has in common with managed IT services, and just like the Star Wars franchise is perpetually growing at scale, we want your business to do the same.

So, grab your BlasTech E-11 blaster rifle, a hydrospanner, or that trusted lightsaber, and let’s take a look at the characters that are most similar to MSPs!

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Topics: Remote Monitoring and Management, Network Operations Center

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