Author Archive

7 Marketing Oil Wells You MUST Be Doing Consistently

Posted On August 21st, 2020

We are about to head into another recession, and most MSPs will be looking to cut costs, including marketing (they look at it as an expense not an investment – but correct marketing will always be an investment). A recession is the ideal time for growing your MSP, as the number of competitors you have will drop.

To take advantage of this opportunity, you must have at least the following seven basic marketing oil wells in place and conduct them on a consistent basis.

1. QBRs/Quick Shot E-mails – Clients

You should be doing QBRs EVERY QUARTER with your best clients. If possible, do them with all clients, but if you lack time or resources, then do technology business reviews (TBRs) with the smaller clients. For those TBR clients, you can send quick shot (cross-sell or upsell) e-mails in the quarters that you are not having the meeting.

2. 9-Word E-mail – Unconverted Leads

This should also be actioned EVERY QUARTER. Go back and look at every lead in the past six months you were in the sales process with (e.g., went to do an assessment or gave a proposal) who then went quiet despite you contacting them many times. (NOTE: Do not send this e-mail to leads who are active in your sales pipeline currently.) Read full article and comment →

“The most oppressive prisons are those that are self-made.”

Posted On August 12th, 2020

A few months ago, while cleaning out  a drawer, I came across an old e-mail someone sent me that was nothing more than a VERY long, passionate, personal assault on me, my character and how “undeserved” my success was, given the fact I had never run an IT business. This person was on my e-mail list (which THEY opted in to) but wasn’t a client– so everything stated was not based on actually knowing what I do or what my program entails. It was all just piss and vinegar unloaded. I printed it and saved it because to me it was an excellent example that I was really making progress.

What’s ironic is that she (yep, it was a woman) is very active in communities that are for advancing women in technology. When I read her comments, which were really nothing more than a string of juvenile insults, I laughed. Then I thought, hang on a minute, aren’t YOU supposed to be SUPPORTING and encouraging the advancement of women? Even if she didn’t like me, for whatever reason, shouldn’t she at LEAST applaud my success in this “male-dominated” industry? As my eight-year-old would say with a big eye roll, “Whaaaateverrrrrr…” Read full article and comment →

Are You Counting The Concealed Costs Of Sunken Money In Your Business?

Posted On August 5th, 2020

In many categories of marketing and sales, as well as in your business, there are not-so-obvious costs that get overlooked because they aren’t recorded on the balance sheet or accounting ledger. If Walmart is eliminating their greeters, I hope they are evaluating the total cost of NOT having that person there, not just the obvious cost savings of the lowered payroll.

Recently, a colleague of mine ran his first virtual conference and was very happy with the results. He shared with me that he was considering cutting out ALL in-person events, given the ease of the virtual event and the cost, complexity and headache of doing an in-person one. I told him that was a very dangerous “cost savings” that would be the death of his business. Read full article and comment →

Relentlessly Focused On Planning, Execution And Numbers, Our Revenue Jumped $319,163 And Our Profits Were Up 355% Last Year!

Posted On August 1st, 2020

Pedro Nunez,

IT Management Solutions

Knocked Down Again And Again –
But Never Knocked Out!

Standing onstage as a Better Your Best finalist at this year’s Fight Club–themed Boot Camp was most appropriate for me because I have been knocked down more times than I can count. When I came to the US from the Dominican Republic with my mother, we lacked a lot and faced many challenges.

Then, after losing my job through workforce discrimination, I started my own break-fix model IT services business in 2003. Disciplined from the Army, I always woke at 4:30 a.m. and worked 12-hour days seven days a week. After I’d reached $550,000 in revenue and thought I had all the money in the world, the 2008 recession wiped out 90% of my clients! With only a fraction of my revenue, I lost my business buildings and filed for Chapter 13 bankruptcy.

As my business, income and confidence crumbled to the ground, so did my health. The relentless hours and stress caused my blood pressure to reach such an alarming rate, my doctor said, “Pedro, if you don’t slow down, you’re going to DIE!”

3 Reasons I Turned EVERYTHING Around

There’s no greater motivator than learning you’re going to be a father. Learning you’re going to be a father TIMES THREE (Yes, TRIPLETS!) lights a burning desire within you to make more, do more and BE MORE. Along with the birth of those three angels in February 2010, the new and improved Pedro 2.0 was born, and I opened the doors to IT Management Solutions!

I searched online for someone who could help me to create an MSP recurring revenue model and grow a profitable business. I found Robin Robins. After getting the Toolkit and finally EXECUTING, I hit $201,000 with $101,000 in recurring revenue in 2009. Thank you, Jesus! I could finally start giving my babies the life they deserve! Just three years later, I was doing $877,000 in revenue with $467,000 recurring each year. By 2016, this immigrant who came from nothing had built a $1.3 MILLION business!

Read full article and comment →

Problem, Agitate, Solve

Posted On July 28th, 2020
The above is the oldest and still one of the most effective formulas for lead generation. More specifically, identify a highly irritating problem, anxiety, worry or frustration your clients have. Next, AGITATE it. Make them FEEL even more annoyed, frustrated and worried about it – and THEN offer the solution to the problem.

As I’ve long taught, effective marketing copy is about “bringing latent dissatisfaction to a boil.” But to do that, you have to know how your prospect thinks and feels. You also must know the specific problems they are dealing with on a day-to-day basis AND be able to articulate those problems to such a degree that they feel you’ve been following them around all day, reading their mind. Only then can you be effective at writing a marketing communication that gets and holds their attention, triggering a “That’s right” response (a nod to my Chris Voss students).

After you’ve effectively stirred up the emotional beehive and whipped them into a lather, you need to move them to action – but selling the solution outright is not the right idea. What WE want to do, particularly in selling advice and services, is to generate a lead. More specifically, to get a call or scheduled appointment with the prospect. To that end, you DON’T want to reveal too much of what the end solution truly is or you’ll risk them hastily dismissing your solution, thinking they either don’t LIKE the solution or triggering a knee-jerk response of “I tried that before and it didn’t work,” or “That solution is too expensive/not a right fit for us/etc.” Read full article and comment →

Your Sales Playbook: NOW Is The Time To Hire

Posted On July 16th, 2020

Difficulty in finding and hiring good people, along with the rising cost of talent, IS a dark side of a good economy, particularly when you’re looking for TOP talent, not the low-paying entry-level positions that are always in flux and relatively easy to find a body to fill.

But now, ONE good outcome of the corona cray-cray is that millions are unemployed, furloughed and having their incomes shattered, which means it’s a hell of a lot easier to find great people.

The last sales help-wanted ad I ran generated hundreds of applicants in days. Good people too. So, if you’ve been putting off hiring salespeople, NOW is the time to get looking – and yes, if you want to grow your business, you cannot do it by ONLY building a herd of techs. You NEED salespeople. But let me give you a few things to think about as you start your search.

1. The best salespeople are all employed and well-paid.

They are hesitant to move because they’ve often built a good, solid book of business over the years and will be very hesitant to walk away and start over. But now that they may be seeing a decline in sales, maybe even prevented from selling or making a commission, you’ve got a much better shot at luring them away – BUT YOU HAVE TO ACT NOW.

The economy will resume and business will get back to normal. If you wait, you’ll miss the window. Read full article and comment →

Are You Wimping Out When It Gets To The CLOSE?

Posted On July 8th, 2020

Are You Wimping Out When It Gets To The CLOSE?

In the book The Lost Art Of Closing, author Anthony Iannarino dares to list the 10 Commitments That Drive Sales, which are NOT commitments the salesperson makes to themselves to be a better salesperson, as you might think, but demands a salesperson should make to the prospect they are selling. *Gasp!* How unprofessional. I hear the outcry of many a “how dare you try to sell me” business owner as their underwear tightens at the very thought. I, for one, applaud and have my sales team reading his book in our weekly book club. I believe the sales profession needs a giant injection of chutzpah and passion for SELLING and, most important, CLOSING. So many have drifted too far and have forgotten that a salesperson’s job is to SELL SOMETHING. Not to greet people, answer questions, make friends and build relationships. That’s a job for a Walmart greeter, not a professional salesperson.

Of course, the first thing sales-prevention biz owners start crying about is how “unprofessional” selling and attempting to close is. Nuts to them. Their knee-jerk, limited understanding of selling makes them think I’m suggesting you act like a Neanderthal, prematurely closing, using hard-sell tactics and pressure and idiotic leading questions. I’m talking about designing your sales process in such a manner that you are asking questions and saying things that persuade the prospect to buy. Of course you should walk away if you cannot help give the customer what they want. Of course you should address their concerns, answer their questions honestly and candidly. Of course you should be respectful and professional. Further, I maintain that if you have to close hard, you screwed up somewhere along the line. The old line of “ABCs – always be closing” has some merit in that you should be doing things throughout the engagement with a prospect to move them toward a natural, painless close, not pulling some stupid jack-in-the-box close at the end. Here, as a reminder, are a few of them: Read full article and comment →

As A Better Your Best Finalist, We Grew Our Revenue By $1M, Our MRR By $111,662 And Our Profit By $338,571 – All In Just One Year!

Posted On July 1st, 2020

Will Nobles,

Vector Choice

Entangled In The Dark Web Of Doubt For 6 Straight Years

The dark web is not a thing or a place. It lives among us, learning, adapting, embedding itself into the very fabric of our digital footprint, now synonymous with daily life. As CEOs, we’ve come to know the dark web of running a business. It preys upon your every insecurity, finding weaknesses in your defenses and your motivation to proceed, give extra effort and outsmart the competition.

And just when you feign success in lieu of giving in, hoping it will be enough to try for one more day, it swoops in – doubt, fear, hopelessness, desperation – and steals it in front of your very eyes.

Two years in, I thought my business was going strong, then BOOM! Three of my TOP CLIENTS representing 60% of my total revenue…GONE! After that gut punch, we operated with a skeleton staff. Under $1M, I was working IN the business, not ON the business. I was so broke I couldn’t even pay myself! The Dark Web of Doubt loomed large. Zero direction. Zero consistency. Zero marketing tools. Zero confidence… For. Six. Straight. Years! Read full article and comment →