Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Ingram Micro's VTN 2012 Fall Invitational Recap

Ingram Micro VentureTech Network VTN logo
As an MSP, we're proud members of Ingram Micro's VentureTech Network (Big Apple Chapter). This week our President Guy Baroan headed to the VTN 2012 Fall Invitational at the Boston Sheraton. You may have seen him manning our booth (with a little help from Vanessa). This was MSP Builder's first booth ever, so thanks to everyone who stopped by and spoke with us, and especially to those who purchased our remote managed services video.

If you didn't get a chance to visit the MSP Builder booth and you're a VTN member, please don't hesitate to contact us to receive our special VTN 2012 coupon code for a discount on the video.

We've gathered all the tweets, posts, and pictures we could find from those in attendance to put together a VTN 2012 recap using Storify. Check it out!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Why Video is Important for your MSP Website


There is a plethora of statistics that show the benefits of having video on a business site, and the articles pushing for increased video use seem to become more prevalent as the year goes on. Anyway, let's beat a dead horse and start off with some numbers:
  • Website visitors are 64% more likely to buy a product on a retail site after watching a video. (Video Brewery)
  • Visitors who view videos stay on a site an average of 2 minutes longer than those who don’t view videos. (Video Brewery)
  • 70% of the top 100 search results contain videos. (invodo)
  • 52% of B2B marketers are now using video, a 27% increase over 2011. (Business 2 Community)
(If you'd like to see more stats, check out MagnetVideo's huge list: 101 Online Video Statistics for 2012)

persons shoes getting sucked into laptop screen
photo credit: HikingArtist.com via photopin cc

We can gather a few things from these numbers...

Monday, October 15, 2012

Selling Managed Services is Teaching Managed Services


(Please go to http://storify.com/MSPBuilder1/selling-managed-services if you having trouble viewing this post.)

Thursday, October 11, 2012

New! MSP Builder LinkedIn Group

MSP Builder now has a LinkedIn group: http://linkd.in/QaM8xx 

This group was created as a space in which managed service providers can talk about how they approach every aspect of their business. There will be a special focus on the sales and marketing of remote managed services. We will share posts, articles, tips, websites, and anything else that might prove useful for MSPs in the sales and marketing of their RMM. We hope this group will be an interactive one with less posts from RSS feeds and more posts from real managed service providers. We want to hear your voices!

If you're new to the group scene on LinkedIn, or maybe you just haven't had the time to poke around, here are some other groups that you might want to join as well (Let us know if we missed any!):

Vendor Groups
LinkedIn logo blue pen
photo credit: TheSeafarer via photopin cc

ConnectWise
LabTech
CharTec
Kaseya
IBM for Midsize Businesses

MSP Site Groups

MSP University
MSPmentor
MSP Builder

General MSP Groups

SMB IT Connection (from CenturyLink)
IT Managed Services
Managed Service Providers Network
CompTIA

We look forward to some great discussions with all of you. Click and join! http://linkd.in/QaM8xx 

Monday, October 1, 2012

A Guide to IBM’s Marketing “Launch Pad” for MSPs

IBM blue logoMSPs around the world tuned into IBM's online launch event of their new PartnerWorld initiative for Managed Service Providers on September 26. (In case you missed it, the event is now available on-demand when you register and login through the above link.) IBM executives presented new incentives, offerings, and marketing programs, and current MSP partners, like Doug Mow of Velocity Technology Solutions, shared their real world IBM success stories. IBM sees this as the beginning of "a new era of partnership, new ways of working together, and new opportunities for future growth." 

Andy Monshaw, GM for IBM's Midmarket Business, kicked off the event with some honesty: "IBM did not connect with the managed service provider community at all...and we were completely wrong." I appreciated this admittance. IBM isn't pretending as if they've been focused on MSPs all along. Monshaw reassured the community, "We don't view you as a channel, we view this as a partnership."

Besides Monshaw's introduction, one of my favorite parts of the launch was when an exec said they realized that the last time there was a press release about IBM and MSPs was "never." Now they can say it was 9/26/12:

IBM Launches Global Initiatives to Help Managed Service Providers Capture Burgeoning Cloud Opportunity

As the marketing manager of an MSP, I've learned to have low expectations for partner portals. There's nothing like navigating a portal to leave me feeling frustrated, and I can count on one hand the vendors who I feel actually care about whether I can find that banner for our website or that product brochure for our client. So the part of the online launch that intrigued me the most was the marketing and sales support initiatives in the IBM PartnerWorld.

If I'm intrigued, I figure some other MSPs might be as well. The following are the set of services listed in the PDF (which is the first link under the Marketing tab in the PartnerWorld for MSPs) Introducing IBM's new Marketing Launch Pad for MSPs: MSP Concierge, Marketing Plan Development, Marketing Assets & Funding, Marketing Execution Services, Analytics & Insights, Social Media/Marketing Education, Promotion of MSP via IBM's BP Directory, MSP Mark.

So let's go find these services!