Archive for Secrets to improving an I.T. Services Practice

MSPU Another Incredible MSP University Boot Camp Is In The Books – Review!

Mspu-logo What an amazing 3 days we have just experienced in Baltimore, Maryland with over 100 of our MSP University Solution Provider partners and an amazing group of Sponsors and Presenters that helped us deliver our best Boot Camp yet!

We started our Boot Camp with a full day covering transformation strategies to take IT Business Owners and transform them into CEOs. Covering HR, hiring, compensation and operational strategies, the highlight of was Paul Dippell’s session on Key Performance Indicators and what to measure and modify to increase profits. Paul, CEO of Service Leadership Inc.; MSP University’s Benchmarking and Analytics Partner (, covered the Benchmark provided to all MSP University Members prior to attending this Boot Camp and how to understand its details in order to take action to improve metrics and increase profitability.

The next 2 days were focused on 2 tracks: Sales & Marketing and Service Delivery, with the attendees broken into 2 groups to benefit from these respective focus areas. Our Sales & Marketing track covered executing the 7-Step Sales Process broken down into 3 appointments to sell IT Solutions and Managed Services, with heavy emphasis on role-playing each phase of the Warm-Up, Qualifying, Presenting the Proposal and Managed Services Agreement, Overcoming Objections and Closing the Opportunity. As mentioned, each attendee to this track executed a tremendous amount of role-playing, coached by MSP University Partner Support Managers and judged by their fellow attendees.

We kicked off the Service Delivery track with a deep dive on Windows Server 2008, EBS and SBS2008, delivered by Microsoft training Guru Stephen Deming. Those of you who have had the opportunity to see Steve in action during a Microsoft live training event know what a treat it is to watch him work. Once the attendees learned what they needed to know about this next generation of Microsoft’s Server platform, it was time to get into Service Dispatch, Problem Management, Service Desk, NOC and overall Service Delivery Best Practices. These sessions were delivered by me personally, and were conducted in a great participatory manner, keeping the slides to a minimum, and discussing more interactively the attendees’ own internal processes, and comparing them against best practices for efficiency, effectiveness, profitability, consistency, scalability and client satisfaction.

A special treat during lunch on the second day was MJ Murphy’s (Business Development Manager, Microsoft Local Engagement Team) passionate, electrifying presentation on Microsoft’s Local Engagement Team’s mission to help partners build community presence and increase local business success with their help. If you follow my blog regularly, you’ll recall my respect for Microsoft’s efforts with the Local Engagement Team and may have viewed some of the webcasts MJ and I have delivered and posted at

On the final day of the Service Delivery track, our good friend and Virtualization Guru Dave Sobel, President of Evolve Technologies ( and SMBVirtualization ( delivered and informative presentation on how to price, position and maintain Virtual Environments for maximum profit. Dave has authored a book (which includes a forward by another well-respected industry author) and DVD training series on the subject .

On behalf of all of us at MSP University, I’d like to take a moment to thank our Partners, who devoted 3 days during Memorial Day Weekend to spend time with us improving their businesses, as well as all of our Sponsors and Presenters:

ARRC Technology
Autotask Corporation
Axis Business Solutions
eFolder, Inc.
Evolve Technologies
Expetec Technology Solutions
Microsoft Corporation
Own Web Now Corp.
Service Leadership, Inc.
Synergy Global Solutions
Tigerpaw Software
Watchguard Technologies

Our next MSP University Boot Camp is scheduled for August 12th-14th, 2009 in Orange County, CA. For information on how you can attend absolutely FREE, visit


Erick Simpson
MSP University
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Posted in: Boot Camps, MSPU Review, Secrets to improving an I.T. Services Practice

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Increase IT Service Delivery Revenues Through Vertical-Specific Marketing

Increase IT Service Delivery Revenues Through Vertical-Specific Marketing

IStock_000003237426Medium[1] When working with our Partners, we’ve noticed that the more vertical-specific a Partner is, the more successful they are in terms of gross revenues.  Partners who have not focused their marketing efforts on specific verticals generally have the lowest gross revenues and are more likely to rely on referrals as their primary source of new client acquisition.

The benefits of focusing on specific vertical markets are numerous.  Once you focus your efforts on a specific vertical and understand the biggest “pains” that industry experiences, you can offer solutions that will decrease or eliminate those common pains, reduce their costs and increase their efficiency.  Working with multiple businesses within the same industry means you already have the potential solutions to their pains – since they’re all going to experience similar problems!  You can do the research and come up with solutions once; and then leverage that knowledge to all businesses within the same industry experiencing the same problems.

For example, if you decided to focus on the vertical market of Attorneys, some of their common business “pains” may include:


  • Being heavily dependent upon email
  • Requiring access to their files and email while traveling, in court sessions or trials
  • Use specific business applications which are a challenge to maintain and keep up to date, like Timeslips or Westlaw
  • Often work long hours, evenings and weekends to prepare for motions and trials


As you address these specific pain points that most Attorney’s experience, you can create marketing messages that will attract Attorneys looking for solutions to these problems.  A sample of a marketing message you might use could be:

“Frustrating email problems got you down? Having trouble getting to critical files in the office when you’re at home or in court? Tired of waiting on the line for Timeslips Technical Support? Call us now to find out how we help our Legal clients reduce email downtime, provide secure remote access to critical data when out of the office, and quickly handle Timeslips and Westlaw technical support issues.”

The marketing message is specific to their actual business pains, which will be far more effective than a general message that simply states your company provides remote access to files and handles technical support issues.  Once you’ve discovered the challenges a specific industry faces, you can develop solutions and compelling marketing messages and vertical-specific collateral that will have businesses within that vertical knocking down your door for the solutions to their problems!

When you generate new clients from referrals, chances are you’ll end up working with businesses across a wide variety of industries.  Every industry has its own unique challenges and “pains”, and you’ll spend far more time trying to figure out what those pains are so you can provide solutions.  Select a handful of verticals to focus your marketing efforts on and leverage the knowledge you gain.  You’ll soon profit from the time you’ve already spent learning the workflow, business processes, line of business applications, troubleshooting and maintenance techniques of the original client, and apply this knowledge to the new client – saving you time and effort and allowing you to provide higher quality services to all of your clients.



Want to learn more marketing and sales techniques to sell on value and increase your profitability during difficult economic times? Get The Best I.T. Sales & Marketing BOOK EVER!

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Posted in: Marketing, Secrets to improving an I.T. Services Practice

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