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7 Key Considerations for Your U.K. MSP Business Plan

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Mary McCoy

Meet Mary! Mary McCoy is a Senior Demand Generation Programs Manager at Continuum, where she's worked for over two years. Mary has consulted with hundreds of partners, lending website, blog and social media support. Before that, she graduated from the University of Virginia (Wahoowa!) with a BA in Economics and served as digital marketing intern for Citi Performing Arts Center (Citi Center), spearheading the nonprofit’s #GivingTuesday social media campaign. Like her school’s founder, Thomas Jefferson, Mary believes learning never ends. She considers herself a passionate, lifelong student of content creation and inbound marketing.
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Recent Posts

5 Ways to Strengthen Your Service Level Agreement (SLA)

Posted by Mary McCoy on 14 October, 2016

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One of the keys to successful managed services is managing client expectations. Your Service Level Agreements (SLAs) do much more than affix metrics to the list of things you promise to do. Well-crafted SLAs build trust and confidence in your company. Your client knows what will happen in any given circumstance, and you know you can deliver as promised. This is the strongest marketing tactic you can employ to build your MSP brand and grow your business.

Here are five ways you can sharpen your SLAs.

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Topics: Business Growth

Security and Disaster Recovery Trends Every MSP Should Know

Posted by Mary McCoy on 7 October, 2016

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This week, IT professionals flocked to London for IP EXPO Europe. Offering educational sessions on the current state of the cloud, cybersecurity and more, there were plenty of takeaways about the future of IT management and what it means for MSPs. It should be no surprise that businesses face more formidable, sophisticated security opposition as cyber attacks become increasingly commonplace and profitable. And now that the Web has given rise to a new era of always-on, 24x7x365 computing, businesses today simply can’t afford to risk losing data. 

To truly serve as trusted advisors to your clients, you need to learn how to prevent data crises that can result when systems are compromised. One of the keys steps in learning how is to stay up-to-date with market trends. In the sections that follow, we present some of the major developments occurring within the managed IT services arena. It’s clear that as the reliance on the cloud grows and threat landscape expands, the need for managed IT services isn’t going anywhere—particularly when it comes to keeping corporate networks secure and backing up data.

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Topics: BDR, Cyber Security

Selling Business Continuity by Calculating the Cost of Downtime

Posted by Mary McCoy on 7 September, 2016

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Downtime is maddening. It’s not only frustrating, it can kill productivity and business continuity. And it can damage customer relations. These things are costly, yet your IT managed services clients may not realise how expensive downtime can be. 

Your customers look to you for advice as well as products and services. You’re the IT experts, and they are not. Often, SME owners don’t consider the fact that even a limited IT failure has a ripple effect throughout their organisation. Or, worse, they believe extended downtime won’t have much of an effect on their business. Why even talk about disaster recovery?

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Topics: BDR

6 Must-Know Formulas to Grow Managed IT Services Profitability

Posted by Mary McCoy on 23 August, 2016

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Just because your firm is bringing in revenue doesn’t mean you’re making money. You have to earn a profit in order to sustain your business and grow. Revenue is good, of course. But revenue doesn’t do you any good if your costs exceed it. That’s why it is critical for MSPs and IT solution providers to track profitability as well as income. 

How do you do that?

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Topics: Business Growth

The New Way to Market and Sell Managed IT Services to SMEs

Posted by Mary McCoy on 19 August, 2016

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Managed IT services providers need to undergo a transformation in regards to how they integrate digital and technological advances into their business operations. As discussed in a May article in MicroScope by Matt Hurley of Juniper, the move toward a digital economy, combined with the need to be “always on,” means anything that can save time and simplify workflows is in high demand. Now, more than ever, seamless delivery is where opportunity lies. For channel partners, this opportunity translates into managed IT services.

At the same time, MSPs need to realise that generating sales is a whole new ballgame. People have changed the way they find information, connect and conduct business. However, many MSPs keep relying solely on legacy sales methods such as outbound marketing. They thus struggle to find new clients within the changing buyer dynamic.

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Topics: Sales & Marketing

9 Data Security Statistics Every European MSP Needs to Know

Posted by Mary McCoy on 1 July, 2016

9 Data Security Statistics Every European MSP Needs to Know


No matter which country you reside in and/or serve, cybersecurity is a globally pressing issue for small- and medium-sized businesses (SMEs). But just what is the state of affairs around the world and in Europe, specifically? We've combed the Internet in search of trends and statistics every managed IT services provider must know. Which European territories suffer the most data breaches, and how much does a typical compromise now cost? Will data security spending continue to increase as threats become more imminent? Answers to these questions and more! 

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Topics: Cyber Security

15 Powerful Quotes from George Osborne's Announcement to Increase U.K. Cyber Security Spending

Posted by Mary McCoy on 19 November, 2015

15 Powerful Quotes from George Osborne's Announcement to Increase U.K. Cyber Security Spending


Addressing the Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) Tuesday, George Osborne, Chancellor of the Exchequer, announced a £1.9 billion investment in cyber security by 2020. In the wake of the horrific attacks in Paris, Osborne pledged solidarity with the nation of France as he shared details of a National Cyber Security Plan that had already been in the works. The new U.K. program will establish a National Cyber Centre (NCC) and increased support for the U.K.'s National Cyber Crime Unit. 

In his speech, Osborne outlined his five-step plan to make cyber security the U.K.'s top priority. While the government will play the largest role in this effort, service providers should take this latest program to heart. With a greater focus on not just containing, but combatting cybercrime, there will be more opportunities to receive the financial support you need, while closing the widening IT skills gap that's kept you from growing and scaling your businesses.

During Osborne's speech, there were many poignant moments particularly relevant to U.K. IT solutions providers. We've grabbed the 15 we found to be the most relevant!

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Topics: IT Services, Cyber Security

Bet You Didn't Know the Queen of England was This Tech Savvy! [INFOGRAPHIC]

Posted by Mary McCoy on 29 October, 2015

image source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trooping_the_Colour#/media/File:Queen_Elizabeth_II_%26_The_Duke_of_Edinburgh.JPG

What comes to mind when you think of Britain’s Queen supreme? We’re guessing it’s probably her extensive wardrobe of hats. Or perhaps the longevity of her reign (63 years, yikes!). But it’s probably not her prowess as techno-queen. While Her Majesty may not be a “thought leader” when it comes to technology, it turns out she has been an early adopter for decades.

What?! you gasp? One of the world's seemingly most staid leaders is secretly a hip technophile? Indeed.

Check out some of these monarchical milestones in this timeline infographic!

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Topics: IT Services

Has the Safe Harbor Data Pact Denial Left You Feeling Well...Unsafe?

Posted by Mary McCoy on 15 October, 2015


Now that the dust has settled, let's revisit last week's ruling regarding Safe Harbor. In case you're unfamiliar with this international headline, the European Court of Justice ruled invalid a fifteen-year old data transfer pact between the United States and Europe. When former National Security Agency (NSA) contractor Edward Snowden exposed the extent of the NSA's international data surveillance, he created a ripple effect. The result? Public anxiety around data privacy has become cemented in international law. What does this mean for IT service and solutions providers in the U.S. and U.K.? We can't definitively say, but here's a closer look at the situation...

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Topics: IT Services, Cyber Security

8 U.K. Cybersecurity Stats that Will Make IT Solution Providers Rethink Their Business Model

Posted by Mary McCoy on 28 September, 2015


The United Kingdom (U.K.) has been buzzing about increased cybersecurity defenses and protection with recent data breaches like the famous Ashley Madison hacking scandal (among other instances) fueling public anxiety. Just last week at the Financial Times Cyber Security Europe Summit, Ed Vaizey, Minister for the Digital Economy warned U.K. businesses that they needed to implement stronger security measures and encouraged widespread adoption of the government's Cyber Essentials program. The scheme outlines the basic controls all businesses should establish to mitigate the damage of data breaches and upon completion, participating organizations receive a badge to demonstrate to clients that they have taken these necessary precautions. 

Now more than ever, residents are demanding this assurance as cyber threats becomes even more prevalent in the U.K. and data regulations continue to be reevaluated for a new unified standard. What exactly is the state of cybercrime, and why is it causing such public unrest? Using Bit9 + Carbon Black, ThreatMetrix, Procorre, and Price Waterhouse Cooper as references, we've compiled eight cybersecurity statistics every U.K. IT solutions provider needs to know.

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Topics: Cyber Security

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