We Hit The Impassable $3 Million Wall, Then Used A $58,253-A-Month Wrecking Ball And Raced To $4.5 Million!

Posted On April 1st, 2020
Nick Knowlton | We Hit The Impassable $3 Million Wall, Then Used A $58,253-A-Month Wrecking Ball And Raced To $4.5 Million!

Nick Knowlton,

RoundTable Technology

50% Growth For 2 Straight Years Seemed TOO Easy.

For the first few years, RoundTable Technology had the great fortune of growing organically through word of mouth, referrals and a couple of small acquisitions. I took my seat at the RoundTable in 2016 to help with sales and business development. At first, my job was a breeze since new contracts basically fell into our laps almost daily, and we enjoyed 50% growth for my first two years. Yes, we grew from $1.2 million in revenue to $3.6 million in just TWO YEARS! We were running at full speed…

Then We Fell Into The “$3 Million Valley Of Death”!

In late 2018, growth was no longer came easy. I’ve learned that in the IT services industry, it isn’t uncommon for companies our size to hit the wall at around $3 million. We called it the “$3 Million Valley of Death” because we just couldn’t claw our way out of it! It’s like everything you’ve done before stops working. Once you reach that point, you have to break apart your company and essentially rebuild it.

Problem was, there was one essential piece still missing: MARKETING! Let’s face it, we are a group of lifelong technology professionals. Translation: we SUCK at marketing. We quickly learned that sales and marketing is the #1 struggle for MSPs. But if we could finally get marketing handled, we could race to $4 million and even $5 million.

Our First REAL Marketing Campaign
Helped Us Book 20 Appointments!  

Every day for two years, Robin Robins’ infamous dollar bill sat on my desk mocking me. Finally ready to get serious about engaging in marketing, it was time to “cash in” that dollar and start our journey with Technology Marketing Toolkit. We joined and several of our team members attended her Rapid Implementation Workshop, including Evan Desjardins, CEO; Joshua Peskay, VP of Technology Strategy; and me, Nick Knowlton, VP of Business Development.

If you have not been to this workshop, the sheer amount of incredibly valuable content packed into those two days is nothing short of amazing. What we didn’t expect was to see actual RESULTS before we even left Nashville! While at the Rapid Implementation Workshop, we sent out the Good News/Bad News Campaign, which resulted in 20 booked appointments. That had to have been the first results from marketing we’d had since we opened our doors 10 years earlier!

One of the greatest benefits to the 12-week Rapid Implementation Program is that it forces you to develop important marketing assets you know you’ve needed for a very long time but haven’t invested the time and attention to develop. Utilizing these assets in our prospecting, proposals and presentations has already produced results!

During the workshop, we kept hearing other MSPs talk about how much they’re getting done with Technology Marketing Toolkit’s MAP/Infusionsoft CRM solution. While we’ve always had great tools and systems, we knew MAP/Infusionsoft must be a part of our new marketing commitment.

A Couple Of Lessons Learned While Reinventing Our Business

Lesson #1: Commit NOW To A Recurring Revenue Model.

Before we shifted to a 100% managed services model, our goal was to cover payroll each month through our recurring revenue. Just knowing your payroll is banked based on your contracts takes a lot of pressure off your shoulders. When you’re HOPING and PRAYING for more business at the end of the month just to make payroll, you’re operating a REACTIVE, not PROACTIVE, business. That makes it difficult to spend on marketing and new hires and as a result, it’s impossible to grow!

Lesson #2: Learn To Say “No.”

As a salesperson at heart, I hate losing a deal. However, I’ve learned over the last couple of years that it’s better to cut bait BEFORE anyone who is not a right-fit client costs you considerable time and money. Now that we have a strong unique selling proposition, Top 8 Reasons To Choose RoundTable Technology, a defined target market and proven marketing tools, we have the confidence to only invite and onboard customers we enjoy working with.    

Lesson #3: Help All Boats Rise.

Since working with Robin, we’ve learned there is tremendous value in being among your peers. There’s something remarkable about this community – this FAMILY – of Technology Marketing Toolkit members. They never hesitate to share what’s worked for them and HOW they did it. Since joining Robin’s program, we too have adopted this selfless approach of sharing our successes and failures with our peers.

Bad News Becomes $21,595-A-Month Worth Of GREAT NEWS!

We were WRONG because we ASSUMED! We’ve worked with many great clients for years who remained under our traditional break-fix model because we assumed they could not afford our managed support agreement. In actuality, they didn’t even know we had a managed services offer!

That’s why the Good News/Bad News letter has been our most successful campaign. From this single campaign, we upgraded 17 break-fix clients to managed services for an additional $21,595 in monthly recurring revenue! Before, we couldn’t count on ANY revenue from these clients, and now we know at least $259,140 a year will hit our books!

Another Incorrect Assumption Streamlines Our Services And Fattens Our Wallets

We always ASSUMED some clients preferred our less expensive level of managed services. Therefore, we offered a bronze package, silver package and just about every color of the rainbow. We had SIX total managed services packages, all with different pricing and different services. All of those packages presented a nightmare for our sales team and service team and probably confused the hell out of our clients.

During the 12-week Rapid Implementation journey, we rebranded our programs to provide just two service levels: Essentials and Premier. We call this our True Up Campaign. We started by having conversations with clients who had expiring contracts, and to date we have not lost any clients as a result. By presenting current clients with our new higher-priced and streamlined services options, we gained an additional $23,390 in monthly recurring revenue!

A Simple Datto Backup Campaign Resulted In $2,271 In MRR!

RoundTable Technology used the Cross-Sell campaign as an opportunity to move clients from an old backup solution (Mozy) to our preferred backup solution (Datto). The results were tremendous! Out of 22 clients, we upgraded 15 of them to Datto while increasing our MRR by $2,271! Because we genuinely offer a better product to our customers, they appreciate our recommendation and reward us each month. It’s a win-win!

The $3 Million Valley Of Death Is In The Rearview Mirror.
We’re Coming For You, $5 MILLION!

Since joining Robin Robins and Technology Marketing Toolkit, we have added $58,253 in MRR to our business.

A successful marketing plan is worthless if you don’t have a top-notch service team ready to impress your new clients. I credit our team with providing the highest level of customer service to our clients and working to earn their trust each and every day.

Moving forward, we are excited to implement new campaigns and watch the automation of a true marketing system at work. With the right tools and trusted partners to help us along the way, we are now positioned to meet and exceed our aggressive goals in the coming years.