I Knew The Importance Of Marketing
But Just Couldn’t Make It Work
Since I founded CloudFirst Technology Solutions in 2010, I always knew the value of good marketing. (At least, I THOUGHT I did.) In the early days, I put together a small marketing team and focused on building a website. We made some flyers and canvassed offices throughout Las Vegas. I even bought an expensive marketing list and began calling. A lot of work. Barely any results.
Over the past 11 years, I’ve revisited my marketing efforts over and over and over again. Every time, I would start with great enthusiasm. Every time, we had limited (if any) results. Every time, I would throw my hands in the air and refocus on our projects so we could keep growing…at a snail’s pace.
After being STUCK around $500K a year for WAY too many years, I hit a wall. While I could always pay my team, I wasn’t drawing a competitive salary. We had two choices:
1) Stay Stagnant And Eventually FAIL, Or
2) Finally GET SERIOUS About Marketing And GROW!
I knew we needed a fresh crop of leads – and not just from partners and referrals. So, I signed up for the Technology Marketing Toolkit in February. Unlike many members, I didn’t put the Toolkit on a shelf. I DEVOURED it! I immediately took action. Immediately things changed.
We began working on our unique selling proposition, started scrubbing my lists and began scheduling technology business reviews (TBRs) with clients. Needing even more guidance, I joined Accelerators Club and signed up for MAP Infusionsoft.
Introducing My Personal Accountability Coach:
A Nine-Year-Old Boy
After I’d watched dozens and dozens of Robin Robins’ videos, my son – who we named Journey – started watching them with me. I figured a nine-year-old kid would have zero interest in videos about sales and marketing. But he LOVED THEM and watched every single one with me! More than the videos, he became OBSESSED with Robin and her marketing genius.
I can honestly say that Journey became the first member of my personal Accountability Group. He would constantly pepper me with questions, such as:
“Daddy, when are we starting the Aspirin campaign?”
“Did we finish the Done-For-You Website yet?”
“Do you think I could join Accelerators Club just like you?”
Since Boot Camp was in Orlando this year, I decided to take my family. Rather than talking about meeting Mickey Mouse, Journey was more excited about possibly meeting Robin. He got his wish! During Boot Camp, Robin was so impressed with Journey’s knowledge of marketing (which he learned from HER videos), she invited him onstage to interview Kevin O’Leary! The whole experience was everything both he and I could have asked for. And at that point I knew I just had to make this work.
First Order Of Business: Company-Wide Improvements
I stared at our unique selling proposition and our 9 Reasons To Do Business With CloudFirst, and I questioned if we genuinely provided the level of service we claimed to provide. We must be the company we say we are. I took that very seriously and began making improvements across the board.
To bolster operations, I found better vendors and put together a streamlined and documented process to better service clients. Next, I completely restructured my company to better support all our marketing efforts, including hiring a marketing coordinator and marketing assistant. I also brought on a director of cloud services to direct all my projects.
Finally, I put incentives in place to encourage my team to continue learning and earn certifications. On the flip side, nobody is eligible for a salary increase unless they demonstrate training and pass tests. We even revised our mission statement and redefined our company values. Yes, we did all of this so we can truly stand behind who we say we are.
Our Most Profitable Workshop Ever:
$12,200 In New MRR And $46,200 In Projects…Just To Start!
Robin’s Rapid Implementation Workshop could be renamed Rapid Results Workshop. I could never have imagined we would generate new clients and new revenue while at the workshop. But we absolutely did!
Our first assignment was to send out the 9-Word E-mail to about 100 unconverted leads from our list. We received interest from five companies and signed two of them on as clients, scoring a $1,200 project and $200 in new monthly recurring revenue. We are still in talks with a couple of these leads to secure even more future MRR.
While at the workshop, we also sent an e-mail broadcast through MAP Infusionsoft to our current customers, encouraging them to contact us for cyber security advice. That single upsell e-mail resulted in 30% of our clients upgrading their services. Total results: $12,000 in new MRR and a $45,000 security upgrade from a larger client!
By Finally Overcoming My Fears,
We Added $4,800 In New MRR!
Although I knew I SHOULD be doing technology business reviews for my clients, I’ve ignored this important opportunity for 10 years. Truth was, I was fearful that if I met one-on-one with my customers, they would unload their frustrations and cancel their contracts. Instead, I continued with my “out of sight, out of mind” theory. It was a real mind block for me.
But after learning about the opportunity to use TBRs as a tool to upsell my clients and grow our relationships, I bit the bullet. They work! Not only do my clients love these reviews, it gives us a clear picture of where business is coming from. Since completing one and a half rounds of TBRs since starting them in February, we have closed $4,800 in new MRR and $25,000 in new projects! Plus, we expect more clients will soon upgrade their services.
Drip Marketing Turned Into
A Tidal Wave Of Revenue Worth $17,000
Learning the importance of drip marketing to keep CloudFirst top of mind with prospects, leads and clients, we started e-mailing the Drip Tips campaign. As a direct result of regularly receiving these educational security tips, a former partner called us to help them with a project worth $17,000 in additional revenue!
A Glowing Testimonial Worth $2,616 In Annual MRR
We used Robin’s e-mails to gather some extraordinary testimonials from our current clients. While writing about how great we are, one of our clients decided to use us for an additional service. Not only do we now have several new testimonials that speak to our expertise and customer care, we gained $218 in monthly recurring revenue – that’s $2,616 a year!
Even Though Our Quote Was 4X HIGHER Than Competitors’ Quotes,
Our Shock-And-Awe Box Sealed The Deal!
We had recently received an urgent lead from Microsoft that was bid out to multiple competitors. However, we had to scramble to finish the documents for our Shock-And-Awe box just that morning. We sent the prospect our contents…minus the box.
Our Shock-And-Awe contents included a cover letter, 9 Things We Do Better, our Guarantee Certificate, Competitive Comparison, testimonials, as well as past magazine articles about CloudFirst Technology Solutions. We also include a CloudFirst pen and mug.
The prospect let me know that our quote came in 4X higher than that of our closest competitor, so I figured we lost the bid. But even before I could return to my office after the sales meeting, they called… We WON the bid for a $5,000 project and $400 in new MRR! This is 100% the result of our incomplete and hurried Shock-And-Awe contents. Just imagine our results when we start sending out the boxes.
I’ve Never Had This Much Revenue Growth So Quickly!
Among the other marketing actions I’ve implemented, we have a new Done-For-You Website that we are starting to drive traffic to. We have launched our Aspirin campaign toward our target market and we’re making calls to set appointments. Every month, we send an e-mail blog post to all clients and opted-in leads. Our clients and about 150+ people from our prospect list get our printed monthly newsletter. We have even implemented a referral program and have already landed our first referral worth $110 in MRR.
For many, these results may seem very modest. For me, they are OUTSTANDING! I have never had so much revenue growth in such a brief period of time, and I have never transformed my organization so quickly since its inception.
Don’t Be Afraid To Fail
Fear is a powerful deterrent to progress. Fear held us back for years. You see, I was afraid to invest the money in marketing just to watch it disappear. Most business owners have no problem spending money if they can see clear results. Instant results. At times, marketing doesn’t deliver those instant results. It does take time and effort. You have to stick with it and trust that the results will come. They certainly have come for us, and we are just getting started!
Ready To Break $1 Million In Revenue
Because Of My 2 Journeys
Before embarking on my journey with Technology Marketing Toolkit, I made the decision to transform my business because of MY Journey. My boy has always been an inspiration to both my wife and me. We didn’t think we could even have kids. So, my wife named him Journey, knowing what we went through to have him and all the adventures awaiting him.
From the first of Robin’s marketing videos we watched together, Journey became my inspiration to turn my company into something he would be proud of. Wanting the best for him, I know that leaving him my successful business would give him choices. Nothing would make me more proud.
By adding $12,328 in new MRR and $93,200 in new projects, for the first time I am closing in on breaking that elusive $1 million in revenue barrier! I realize this is only the beginning, but I’m excited about how far we’ve come. And now I’m confident we have the tools to get to where we need to go!