Master Your MSP or IT Business

Most industries are feeling the pinch of today’s economic climate resulting in conservative and cautious spending. Consequently, we were surprised when MSPmentor relayed that, according to AMI Partners, U.S. small to mid-sized businesses (SMBs) with fewer than 100 employees are predicted to spend 4% more on marketing in 2012 than in 2011. That’s $36 million! As small to mid-sized managed services providers (MSPs) and IT professionals, what can you do to stay competitive without succumbing to the burden of hefty marketing expenses? Moreover, what can you do to hone or maintain a competitive edge?

The best piece of advice that we have come across regarding the financial solvency and growth of small to mid-sized IT businesses was brought to our attention by MSPmentor. MSPmentor relayed comments made by Michael Drake, CEO of masterIT, at the TruMethods SchnizzFest conference in Philadelphia, in which Drake said of his MSP company, ‘“We simplified.” Instead of selling services on a per-device or per-user basis, masterIT now offers predominantly monthly, or time-based contracts. By “simplifying,” masterIT was able to increase its revenues by creating a steady stream of reoccurring monthly charges instead of a fluctuating aggregate of per-device or per-user charges.

While this model may not be the optimal structure for all IT services providers and MSPs, it is important for SMBs to evaluate their price models and the history of all of their contracts and accounts in order to assess the best way to simplify their company structure to increase revenue. Using professional services automation software, you can easily evaluate the profitability of your client services with system generated reports and models. The software customizable reports enable you to review and analyze client information by running Account and Contract activity reports, among other insightful reports, to help you best evaluate your company’s structure and profitability. Based on this information, you can determine which business and price model you should adopt so that you will be most

Another great way protect yourself from the expense of bolstering and growing your company is to take full advantage of online resources. Tech forums, like the our software forum, can aid you with the management of your customers’ service needs. These sites are an accessible and instantaneous problem-solving tool that can help you serve your customers faster and increase your competitive edge. Similarly, PSA software can help you automate and streamline your workflow, enabling you to increase your billable hours, accommodate more customers and earn a reputation for providing efficient and timely service.

Moreover, for insight into the IT industry, you can stay informed and competitive by scouring blogs for useful tips. While there are a slew of options available, we recommend choosing readable and advice-filled blogs. By gaining insights into the IT industry, your competition, and pertinent trends, you will be able to impress your current and prospective customers by being informed, knowledgeable and reliable.

Most importantly, instead of relying on costly marketing campaigns to grow your company, you can find leads, build a name for your company, and create marketing and branding initiatives with the aid of social media outlets. From searching social networking sites for keywords that indicate that an individual or company is a potential customer to optimizing your website to draw in more traffic and increasing your company’s virtual presence in order to strengthen your company’s name recognition, there are a variety of affordable, if not free, ways for you to optimize your marketing resources and promote your company.

Running SMBs pose a litany of challenges, but the cost of building, branding and marketing your company should not be the strain that impedes your ability to be successful. While most SMBs focus their resources on marketing efforts to counteract today’s economic hardships, choose to be different. Choose to stand apart. Learn from the leaders in the IT industry and choose to take control of your business by managing your resources effectively. Use a PSA to manage and streamline your business. Use information to improve your prowess in the field, and maximize your online presence to build name recognition. Combined, these elements will help you and your company succeed!

Have a good weekend,
Success Team

This entry was posted in Company, IT Industry and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.