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Empowering Your MSP Business to Grow and Prosper—One Post at a Time

5 Ways to Improve Your MSP Service Level Agreement (SLA)

Featured Post

5 Ways to Improve Your MSP Service Level Agreements (SLAs)

SLAs are the foundation of your MSP business. They are essential to building strong client relationships and must be clear, reasonable and well-constructed.

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Lily Teplow

Lily is a Content Marketing Manager at Continuum and is passionate about helping businesses solve their biggest challenges. She is responsible for managing Continuum’s MSPblog and writing on a variety of topics, from sales and marketing to cybersecurity, helping establish authority in the MSP market. Lily is also a seasoned content creator and has supported Continuum’s PR and media efforts. In her spare time, Lily enjoys singing, traveling the world, and cheering on her favorite Boston sports teams!
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Recent Posts

What Is the Cost of IT Downtime? [CHART]

Posted by Lily Teplow on April 20, 2018

What Is the Cost of IT Downtime?

Despite the unprecedented growth in modern technology, IT downtime remains an expected yet feared risk of doing business. Especially for small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), downtime can be crippling—impacting both finances and reputation in potentially disastrous ways.

Because of this, SMBs need a reliable backup and disaster recovery (BDR) solution to safeguard their critical data and ensure they don’t close up shop after extended downtime. The fatal mistake many businesses make is not appreciating the value of BDR until it’s too late, so how can you convince them to buy now? Use the chart below to attach a dollar figure to IT downtime and get immediate buy-in to your business continuity services.

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Topics: Backup and Disaster Recovery, MSP Sales Chart

Partner Spotlight: How Offloading Project Work Results in Happier Technicians

Posted by Lily Teplow on April 6, 2018

How Offloading Project Work Results in Happier Technicians

When it rains, it pours. In the IT industry, this is often the rule rather than the exception. The constant putting out of fires or buildup of tickets can put a lot of strain on your business—especially on your team of technicians.

Technicians are the backbone of your managed services business, and your success relies on the quality and caliber of this team. Yet when their value is being barred by menial tasks day in and day out, it can create inefficiencies, cause you to miss out on revenue-generating projects and ultimately, lead to technician churn.

Despite these challenges, some MSPs have found a way to maintain a happy technician team; and the secret lies in offloading project work. I recently sat down with Eddie Phillips, chief operating officer at Shield Networks, to discuss how he uses Continuum Tech Advantage to offload project work to the NOC and create a healthier work-life balance for technicians.

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Topics: Network Operations Center, Workforce Optimization and Employee Retention

What's the Best Way to Reduce Client Churn?

Posted by Lily Teplow on April 5, 2018

tracking-managed-services-satisfaction

Customer satisfaction is the number one way to ensure your continued success as a managed IT services provider (MSP)—and a customer satisfaction survey is one of the best ways to see how you’re performing. The data from a customer survey offers extremely valuable feedback, which you can funnel back into your business to improve your service offering.

However, writing an effective survey that people will actually fill out can be a real challenge. Here are a few tips for getting started.

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Topics: Business Development and Growth, Customer Service, Client Acquisition and Management

Top 3 BDR Posts for World Backup Day 2018

Posted by Lily Teplow on March 30, 2018

Top 3 BDR Posts for World Backup Day 2018

What would you do if you lost everything? This is exactly the question that World Backup Day prompts you to consider when you land on their awareness website. Data is such a business driver today, but one small accident or failure could cause productivity and profit to come to a complete halt. For MSPs, an essential first step in building a successful business continuity plan for your clients is helping them recognize the need for backup and disaster recovery (BDR)—and what better day to start than the day before World Backup Day?

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Topics: Industry News, Data Protection, Backup and Disaster Recovery

3 Marketing Assets Every MSP Should Have

Posted by Lily Teplow on March 28, 2018

3 Marketing Assets Every MSP Should Have

For most IT service providers, you don’t have the time to create 10, 20, or 30 pieces of marketing collateral per quarter. What’s more, with so many different types of content, it can be difficult to know which pieces are most important for your business, or how to get started creating them. This might leave you wondering, “well, if I needed a few must-haves from a marketing or lead-generation standpoint, where can I start?”

In this post, we’ve whittled it down to the top three marketing assets you absolutely need in your portfolio to help you grow your MSP business.

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Topics: Sales and Marketing, Inbound Marketing

What to Do with All of That Data: Retention Best Practices

Posted by Lily Teplow on March 22, 2018

What to Do with All of That Data: Retention Best Practices

Data and corporate information are the lifeblood of your clients’ business—there’s no denying their importance. Today, organizations across all industries are tasked with ensuring that data is protected, retained, and accessible when needed, yet many lack the appropriate archiving and retention policies.

As an MSP, it’s your job to be your clients' strategic advisor and help them understand exactly what their retention requirements are for various business needs and data types. So, in honor of spring cleaning season, we’re providing you with best practices to help you tidy up your clients’ IT environment and implement retention policies for more secure, accessible data.

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Topics: Data Protection, Backup and Disaster Recovery

How to Write an MSP Business Plan

Posted by Lily Teplow on March 21, 2018

Write-an-MSP-Business-Plan

If you fail to plan, you plan to fail. That old adage has always rung true in all businesses, and managed services providers (MSPs) are no different. Yet successful planning all starts with one critical element: Your MSP business plan.

Despite the importance of this document, many MSPs operate without one, and subsequently operate without any kind of guidance or direction. An MSP might have acquired a few early customers from referrals and personal relationships, prompting them to formally set up their business, but the truth is that without a business plan to lay out the future, that MSP will have no idea where it’s headed in the future. Simply put, you need a sound business plan, codified and documented, to steer your MSP’s direction. Here’s how to write an MSP business plan, in eight steps.

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Topics: Business Development and Growth, Revenue Growth and Profitability

How Dwell Time Can Impact Profitability [CHART]

Posted by Lily Teplow on March 16, 2018

How Dwell Time Can Impact Profitability

Did you know that the faster a cyber attack can be identified and contained, the lower the costs and damage? Dwell time, or the number of days a threat remains undetected within a given environment, can have significant impact on a company’s profitability. The more dwell time, the higher the rate of success for a cyber attack and the higher the costs associated with that attack. 

This is especially concerning for small- to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) who don’t have the proper cyber defenses in place to identify or contain today’s persistent threats—but partnering with an MSP or MSSP like you may be the answer. According to a study by Ponemon Institute, there’s a notable relationship between how quickly an organization can identify and contain a cyber threat, and the financial consequences. So, to help you sell clients and prospects on the value of IT security, we pulled compelling data from this study that you can use in your own sales presentations. See the chart below:

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Topics: Cybersecurity and Threat Management, Managed Security Services, MSP Sales Chart

12 Helpful Online Tools Every MSP Needs

Posted by Lily Teplow on March 14, 2018

12 Helpful Online Tools Every MSP Needs

As a managed service provider, it can get overwhelming putting out fires and wearing multiple hats. Your clients rely on you to not only maintain their IT environments, but a high level of service and organization. Sometimes, you need all the help you can get—which is why we’ve put together this list of tools that can help you streamline your business operations.

Whether you need help with productivity and communication, password management, or even sales and marketing, we’ve got you covered. Keep reading to discover the tools that are essential in the daily work of an MSP.

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Topics: Business Development and Growth, Sales and Marketing, Service Delivery and Operational Efficiency

The Best of MSP Blog Content: February 2018

Posted by Lily Teplow on March 1, 2018

Monthly-Blog-Roundup-Feb-18

Is it just me, or did February pass by in the blink of an eye? As we (quickly) approach the end of Q1, let’s take a look back at this past month’s top content that has helped our readers grow and scale their MSP business.

In this roundup, there’s a clear emphasis on cyber security—from testing your knowledge, to effectively selling it to customers and prospects. Also featured are helpful sales tips and confessions from a former technician. Keep reading to check out all five blog posts our readers couldn’t get enough of this February!

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Topics: Sales and Marketing, Cybersecurity and Threat Management

RMM 101: Must-Haves for Your IT Management Solution
MSP Guide to Managed Services SLAs  [white paper]
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