The Worst 2 MSP Killers

One of the most mentioned complaints I get from MSPs I talk to, is that their clients do not deal with them in ways that make them feel respected as professionals. Having been in this place before, I know what it is like to be unhappy and frustrated with your business and client base. These are the signs of a dying practice. Two of the main killers of an MSP practice are:

1) Constantly hassled over price and time lines

How much of your day have you spent arguing with your customers over invoices or time lines for projects? If price and time are the only differentiators you have in your business, you’re in trouble. Are you constantly pressured into unrealistic timelines and project costs? Not only would it be easy for your competition to out compete your firm, but the stresses from being over worked and underpaid may kill your business before the competition does.

2) High client acquisition cost

How much does it cost for you to have your marketing message reach your prospective clients? A successful MSP firm depends on referrals from their clients. Do your marketing efforts seem like a waste of money? They probably are. If clients do not respect you as a professional, in most cases, they will not refer you to their colleges and friends.

So how do you prevent these two MSP killers? What you want to do is provide more value to your clients. As an MSP, you need to be filling the CTO role for your clients. Making sure their networks are working is not enough. Almost any MSP firm can do that.

Basically, you should always be thinking how to transform your clients’ capital into technology that will move your client’s company further in its objectives.

What you need to do as a “virtual” CTO?

Identify, exploit and integrate new technology. As a CTO for your clients, you need to always be on the lookout for new technologies that help them drive their business strategy and increase revenues. New technologies can also help reduce costs. Think how happy your clients would be with you if you’ve integrated a new technology that saved them money and increased revenues. Believe me, it can happen.

Obviously saving or making your clients’ money is the end goal, but there are other things you should be doing to further your clients’ business objectives. Technologies that enhance client relationships (i.e. the relationship between your client and their customers) or communications and collaboration between employees will lead to measurable benefits.

Acting more like a CTO and less like a “computer guy” increases the amount of value you provide to your clients and gives you a competitive advantage.

The relationship that forms from behaviors like this, mitigates the risk of being ousted by your competition and your clients will surely recommend you to their friends and colleagues.