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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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Who Filled Out My Form? Prospect Research 101

Posted by Frank Bauer on April 19, 2018

Who Filled Out My Form? Prospect Research 101

“I got an inbound lead! I’m going to call them right now!”

Whoa there. Let’s hit pause for a second. All of us in business get excited when that hot inbound lead comes in, but you shouldn’t be running full steam ahead as soon as they submit a form. Instead, take a step back and prepare before engaging.

Much like it’s important to understand your managed services competitive landscape, you’ll want to fully understand the end client before reaching out. That due diligence starts on the Internet.

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Topics: Business Development and Growth, Revenue Growth and Profitability, Sales and Marketing

The Ultimate Guide to Success in Managed IT Services

Posted by Lane Smith on April 18, 2018

The Ultimate Guide to Success in Managed IT Services

According to BCC Research, the global managed IT services market could be worth more than $250 billion by the year 2021. This sector in flourishing, and the potential for value-added resellers (VARs), break/fix providers, or emerging MSPs to achieve scalable, profitable growth in IT is tremendous.

Capitalizing on this proactive, preventative approach to IT services is more efficient than running around putting out fires. Additionally, this model can lead to higher margins, scalability and recurring revenue, while improving customer service. To get there, however, you will need the right business plan, technology and partnerships. 

So, what’s the key to unparalleled success in managed IT services? Focus on these four elements.
 

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Topics: Revenue Growth and Profitability, Service Delivery and Operational Efficiency

Metrics That Make Money: Learnings from an MSP Acquisition

Posted by Martijn van der Schaaf on April 4, 2018

Metrics That Make Money: Learnings from an MSP Acquisition

In 2015, I made the surprising discovery that there was no easy-to-use, powerful PSA tool available for MSPs. I searched and searched, yet I couldn’t find the low-complexity, low-cost solution I was looking for. So, I decided to take matter into my own hands. 

After more than 13 years of being an MSP, we sold our business in 2016 in order to launch Computicate PSA, an easy-to-implement PSA platform that MSPs can use to unleash their full potential. This blog represents my personal narrative about the journey of selling my MSP. While I don’t claim to be a merger and acquisition (M&A) expert, I did learn a big deal throughout the selling of our company, and I’d like to now share these learnings with you.

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Topics: Revenue Growth and Profitability, Mergers and Acquisitions

New Verticals to Go After in 2018: Non-Profit

Posted by Joseph Tavano on March 27, 2018

New Verticals to Go After in 2018: Non-Profit

Tight budgets. Limited staff. At first, non-profits do not sound much like a vertical that makes sense for MSP growth. How does one build a profitable line of business from a group of clients that, by definition, do not turn a profit themselves?

However, consider those first impressions one more time. Tight budgets mean there’s no room for anything to go wrong with their IT networks, because there may literally not be enough funds to repair and restore crucial infrastructure if it goes down. Limited staff means hiring a team of dedicated, qualified IT technicians is out of the question. In reality, there may not be a vertical better-suited to the managed services model than the non-profit sector, as there is a clear and genuine need for MSP services.

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Topics: Revenue Growth and Profitability, Vertical Alignment

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

New Verticals to Go After in 2018: Construction

Posted by Joseph Tavano on March 13, 2018

New Verticals to Go After in 2018: Construction

When the discussion of verticals comes up in the IT channel, the conversation usually switches to the healthcare industry, legal, financial—in other words, the established verticals, and the opportunities there. However, in many regions the markets for these verticals amount to a zero-sum game; there are a limited number of clients within said vertical in a region, and to add new clients, another must lose them.

This sort of stiff competition can make it challenging for new MSPs to enter a vertically aligned market, but that’s not to say there aren’t other opportunities to specialize in a vertical. Numerous verticals exist for MSPs to tap into, and new ones are being born all the time as advancements in technology and communications enter new sectors.

The construction industry is one such sector where managed IT services are emerging as a clear necessity for maintaining normal business operations, and as such has become a new vertical MSPs are able to specialize in.

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Topics: Business Development and Growth, Revenue Growth and Profitability

7 Habits of Highly Successful IT Service Providers: Habit #7

Posted by Joseph Tavano on March 8, 2018

7-Habits-of-Highly-Successful-IT-Service-Providers--Habit-7

MSPs have plenty of options when selecting their technology partners, so what is the criteria that matters most when choosing the best partner for your business? In this seventh and final installment of the 7 Habits of Highly Successful IT Service Providers, you’ll learn why a low total cost of ownership for your technology solution over time is the best way to maximize margins and optimize productivity.

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Topics: Business Development and Growth, Revenue Growth and Profitability

New Verticals to Go After in 2018: Financial

Posted by Joseph Tavano on February 27, 2018

New Verticals to Go After in 2018: Financial

When you’re ready to take on large accounts—the kind that are teeming with regulatory compliance needs and lengthy contract processes, but also produce lengthy, highly profitable client lifecycles—the financial vertical may be the area in which you want to specialize your MSP practice.

At first glance, it may seem like the healthcare vertical and the financial vertical have similar requirements—they are both large clients with many servers, devices and endpoints, and they are both highly regulated industries that have strict data compliance rules. However, the financial vertical has highly specialized rules regarding data governance, auditing concerns, and due diligence efforts regarding SLAs that differentiate the vertical.

However, those differences create opportunity for the MSP who chooses to specialize, as IT service providers have never been more necessary for banks and other financial institutions large and small.

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Topics: Business Development and Growth, Revenue Growth and Profitability

7 Habits of Highly Successful IT Service Providers: Habit #6

Posted by Joseph Tavano on February 22, 2018

7 Habits of Highly Successful IT Service Providers: Habit 6

What would your perfect client look like? How many employees do they have? Are they in a certain geographical region? Do they work in a specific vertical? The answers to these questions may largely depend on the makeup of your MSP business.

In this sixth installment of the 7 Habits of Highly Successful IT Service Providers, you’ll learn why targeting ideal clients can lead to better client life cycles and larger revenue over time—if you are aligned to support it.

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Topics: Business Development and Growth, Revenue Growth and Profitability, Sales and Marketing

Cross-Selling and Upselling: 3 Quick Ways to Capture Open Revenue

Posted by Lily Teplow on February 21, 2018

Cross-Selling and Upselling: 3 Quick Ways to Capture Open Revenue

What is one thing that today’s most successful companies have in common? They are frequently cross-selling and upselling. For them, it’s as easy as asking, “would you like fries with that?” or mentioning, “customers who bought this item also bought...” For the average IT service provider, however, cross-selling and upselling requires a bit more effort and creativity.

Expanding service adoption within your client base is one of the most effective ways to grow your managed services business. If you're looking for quick wins on how to do this, here are some strategies that will help you effectively cross-sell and upsell your existing clients.

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Topics: Revenue Growth and Profitability, Sales and Marketing

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