Where are you spending your sales energy?
If there's one thing that's certain in the managed services community, it's bad advice.
Actually, it's not just unique to the managed services community; it runs crazy throughout almost every small-to-large business community out there. Yes, you can exhaust all of your sales energy chasing advice that's just incorrect.
There's only one audience that truly matters when you decide it’s time to invest some of your sales energy in perfecting your sales, marketing, operations and even finance…and that advice should go to only one demographic.
What is this? …
Who should you be spending your sales energy talking too?
You’ve heard the old saying — Opinions are like…well, a particular body part–everyone has one.
Why is the customer or prospect overlooked when seeking advice?
Wouldn’t they be able to tell you what they are looking for?
OK, I can hear the grumblings in the back room already... Your customers and prospects have no idea. (This statement may be true, but don’t overlook them.) Your customers and prospects will tell you exactly what they want and need. Something about trying to fit a round peg into a square hole comes to mind here.
Where should you spend your energy...sales, marketing, accounting, business, finance and more?
The one thing that truly shocks me in the managed services community is how many small business IT service consultants turn to others on Facebook, LinkedIn or some other platform, and seek answers from people who are struggling just like they are.
You know the questions…
- How much should I bill for managed services?
- Should I invest in a CRM?
- Does managed services marketing really work?
Before you waste another second of your sales energy or even your marketing energy or business energy chasing the advice of people who haven’t done it yet, here's my advice. (Gee, am I like them?)
- Set Up An Advisory Council: This should be comprised of your top clients; you know, the ones who are the rocks of your organization. Host an advisory council meeting of your top clients every quarter and ask them what matters most to them regarding IT services and trust their answers.
- Find a Mentor: Get a mentor from another managed services company that is at least four times bigger than you. So, if you are a $250,000 annual MSP, find someone doing a million. If you’re doing a million, find someone doing $5M.
- Dump The Losers: You know the "negative Nancy's" of the world. Dump all your loser colleagues, friends and whoever else runs in your circles. Why? Losers will continuously drag you down to their level, and that's not good. If you want to be a $5M managed services company hang out where $5M MSPs hang out. Associate with the $5M MSPs and stop hanging out with losers.
- Seek Advice From Those Who Have Done It: One of the strengths I like to think that I bring from a marketing side is that I've done it — I built a $5.5M MSP Sure, it was 10 years ago, but heck, success breeds success. There are many leaders in our industry, like Paul Dippel, Arlin Sorensen and others who have done it. Seek out these guys and listen to what they have to say. Why? They’ve done it.
- Join Vistage or EO: Now, I've never been a member of either, but those who I work with love it. EO and Vistage give you the market’s feel on things. Not the IT provider who think they know what the market wants. If you’re going to invest $1,000 a month into some group... EO or Vistage would be the one for me.
- READ, READ, READ: A lot of the stuff that a “high-priced consultant” will squeeze out of you can be found in a $24.95 book on Amazon. Do yourself a favor and read more.
- Watch Lots Of YouTube Videos: I love YouTube. Why? Everything I learned about SEO, for example, I learned by reading and watching YouTube videos four hours a night. There's a ton of information for free on YouTube.
There will always be someone out there trying to steal your attention and take your money. I remember a saying my mother taught me many years ago: "A fool and his money are easily parted." I've been a fool and wasted so much money on garbage that doesn’t work and didn’t serve my goals.
I also overheard this at Orlando airport “Idiots follow idiots” don’t be an idiot!
This is why I watch guys like Arlin and Gary Vaynerchuck; they have nothing to sell besides the odd book — No high-priced coaching programs, no get-rich schemes and no hidden agenda.
Why did I write this blog post? Simple..., I hate seeing managed services providers getting ripped off from some scheme that doesn’t serve them or their dreams. Before you waste another second of your sales energy, your business energy, your marketing energy and your overall energy…follow my steps above and keep your hard-earned money where it belongs…in your bank account.
Before you drain all your sales energy....call these great organizations.
Need someone to help you? Simple... hire an organization that can help with the heavy lifting. This is why I love organizations like Managed Sales Pros, SeaLevel Operations, The Compliancy Group, The Leren Group and, yes, Ulistic. This is why I started Ulistic–to help with the heavy lifting when it comes to managed services marketing.
Want to learn more?… Give me a call at 855-964-2608 and let's talk.