Trusted advisor status takes a cocoon to butterfly process

Some days, it appears that the average managed IT services provider is stuck in their cocoon. Stuck in the transition from break/fix to the trusted IT advisor, never able to fully grow into something great and fulfill their true potential. Day 2 of the Infusionsoft ICON 2016 marketing conference being held in Phoenix, AZ., is full of potential strategies and ideas that, when followed, simply allow your managed IT services to grow into something awesome.

This is my first trip to ICON and I have to tell you, it is far from a disappointment. What is a disappointment is the lack of IT services companies in attendance. I have met law firms, financial service reps, software designers, and more, but not one managed IT service company.

Why is that?  

Could it be the simple grip that the incumbent PSA’s like ConnectWise and Autotask have on managed IT service companies? It could be. However, in my experience, the cream of the crop managed IT services companies look for more focused solutions, such as Infusionsoft, to automate their marketing.

After all, solutions like Infusionsoft fully automate the marketing process – allowing a managed IT services company to automate:

  • Email marketing
  • Direct mail
  • Telephone marketing
  • And much more.

ICON 2016 is their annual conference. Clate Mask, CEO of Infusionsoft, recalled during his day one keynote about the first ICON event at the Infusionsoft office with 37 of his closest clients. ICON 2016, the tenth ICON event, now has more than 3000 attendees and numerous sponsors that can help managed IT services providers thrive with their marketing.

Day 2 featured marketing experts Ryan Deiss from and David Dee from GKIC. Both are long time professionals in their craft. Deiss covered the importance of branding. We are not talking branding as in your logo and corporate fonts, that is a style sheet. Branding is about your messaging and how your prospects and clients respond to your messaging.

Deiss equates branding to making a deposit into your bank account: You start with nothing, and every time you provide something of value to your marketplace, you are making a deposit. When you gather enough funds in your branding bank account, then you can make a withdrawal, aka a sale.

Ryan also went on to comment that too many small businesses and MSPs fall into this category. They try to make the sale without massing any wealth, leaving them to wonder why their sales are flat or almost non-existent.

MSPs need to start building their business relationship accounts so when they are ready to make withdrawals, they can.

Ryan concluded his keynote by sharing a story of when his father and him were stuck on the beach, unable to get his father’s car out. They needed help and two scenarios unfolded. The first was when someone with a pickup truck and a winch offered to lend a hand. They wanted $20 before he would hookup. The second was when someone who worked at a restaurant on the beach simply wanted to lend a helping hand. Guess which one helped and got a nice additional tip that evening?

Managed services providers are often the first guy wanting the $20 upfront. They hide content behind gated landing pages and make it impossible to work with unless they volunteer up some information first. Ulistic recommends you let your awesome content stand for itself, massing wealth in your bank account.

Later in the afternoon, we had the opportunity to listen to David Dee from GKIC.  I am a big fan of Dee and his team at GKIC.  David shared how GKIC builds a repeatable marketing process that guides a lead through a process to convert them into an opportunity. GKIC’s approach of ACE is crucial and something all managed IT service companies must follow:

  • Authority
  • Celebrity
  • Expert

Ulistic also believes in the ACE model. One managed services provider we know who follows the ACE principles is Raj Goel from Brainlink International in New York City.  Goel is a TV celebrity, an authority on all things cyber security, and an expert in the field. Goel makes normal appearances on local NYC TV, Fox Business, and more. He is often invited to speak at numerous global conferences on cyber and information security.

Dee concluded that the market always moves to those who are experts, authorities, and celebrities. This is proven with Goel’s successful managed IT services business located in NYC.

Stuart Crawford is an IT services and managed services marketing expert. He founded Ulistic in 2010 and has been a regular contributor to CDN ever since.

At Ulistic, we have the expertise to help you get your company’s message out there and maximize your connections. We offer a wide array of unrivaled services and relevant content designed for your company’s success! To learn more about the solutions that Ulistic can bring to your strategy, give us a call at 716.799.1999, or send us an email: [email protected].

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Stuart Crawford
Stuart Crawford
Stuart Crawford is an MSP marketing specialist and coaching professional. He is president of Ulistic Inc., a managed services coaching, mentorship, sales and outsourced marketing services firm. For more info call u 716.799.1999 or email [email protected]

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