Liking what you do in your career is helpful, but passion and knowledge about your field are not enough to run a successful business. Many MSP owners are interested in the services they offer and know a lot about the technical details but running the MSP business is a different story. We will discuss with you 3 crucial tips to be a successful MSP provider.
Successful MSP owner Josh Gossett recently shared some things he wished he had known when his MSP was starting out. Here is a look at some of his top tips.
Find opportunities for automation in marketing
Many MSP owners are not very involved in the marketing side of the business, but it is important not to confuse the purpose of marketing with that of sales. Marketing’s job is to create curiosity. It is not to close deals or schedule a discovery–it is to create customer curiosity for salespeople to take an opportunity from the marketing funnel and move it through the sales funnel.
Marketing can be a waste of time and money, especially if we do not manage it well. One way to make it more efficient is by finding opportunities for automation. When you must do something more than once, figure out how to automate it. A lot of marketing and brand awareness can be evergreen. One of Josh’s evergreen campaigns is a series of technical tips that go out to every client. Josh created the content just once, but he used it time and time again.
When it comes to marketing and branding, the goal is to do things once and get benefits for a long time. Josh cited the example of Harry Potter author JK Rowling. She spent years writing her most famous book, but she only did that once, and now she’s a self-made billionaire. While there are now other books in the collection that she’s written, it was the first one that really launched all her success–and she only had to write it once. That’s what you want to do with your marketing.
A webinar is a perfect example of this. You will put together your slideshows, but you only do it once. After that, you can share it multiple times with those who didn’t attend the first time. You can send it to new clients, or sales professionals can point back to it and use it as a reason to call or invite people—the possibilities are endless.
The same is true of marketing videos. You can have a writer turn them into a blog post, take snippets for social media, and use them for email campaigns. Focusing on things you can build once and then leverage over time will give you a very high return on your marketing investment.
Encourage clients to go fully managed
Encouraging every client to go fully managed can save time and trouble in the long run. It is very challenging to serve a client when you tackle your work around them. For example, if they insist on buying their own computers on Amazon or if their office manager wants to fix things, everyone will get in each other’s way, and no one will be happy with the results.
Instead, explain to your clients from the outset that your technicians and tools will make their lives better. Convince them to sit back and let you handle everything.
Think about where you want to be in your business
Josh recommends considering where you want to be in your business and your ultimate goals, and he suggests using the cash flow quadrant by Robert Kiyosaki as a guide. This quadrant uses the letters E, S, B, and I to represent the different methods that generate money or income.
Here is a brief overview of what each letter stands for:
Most of us start working as an employee for someone, whether you are flipping burgers or answering phones. You work for someone else and trade your time for money to produce an income. You may not have a lot of responsibilities, but when you stop working, or the business closes, your income will also stop.
This is more like owning a job. You don’t own a business, and you have more control over the type of work you do, but you are still exchanging your time for money, whether you’re a dentist, realtor, insurance agent or freelancer. The main problem with this approach is that when you don’t work, you don’t get paid. And if you want something done, you must do it yourself. Over time, this can cause burnout and fatigue.
This is where you find people to produce your income for you. You own a system, and you lead people. And while a self-employed individual might think that if they want something done right, they must do it themselves, a B will understand that if they want something done right, they need to find the best person to do the job. A B is a master delegator, finding people to handle sales, marketing, operations, finance, and customer service for them. Your MSP can run successfully without your constant involvement.
This is where you use the money you have already earned to make more money for yourself. This quadrant is the only one where you will earn truly passive income. Perhaps you’ll take the money you earn from your MSP and invest it in other pursuits. You might buy shares of companies owned by people in the B quadrant or find another way to use assets you own to produce income.
Think about where you are in your MSP and what your goals are as a business owner. The B and I quadrants are the primary paths to financial freedom. For some people, a lifestyle business is sufficient, but others have a growth mindset and want to invest in something else.
What do you want your role in your business to be? This vision will dictate your goals, and those goals will tell you how much you must sell. If your goal is to displace yourself in your business and be more hands-off, you need to find people to take over the different hats you are wearing.
There is no strict formula for MSP success, but those who have already paved the way are a great source of insight as you seek your own path to success. Join our Academy now!