Discover How IT Channel Solution Providers and
Small Business Technology Providers
Just Like You Can Grow their Businesses with
Soup to Nuts, Outsourced Virtual IT Solutions
Do you provide outsourced small business technology support?
Do you need to grow your business?
If so, then listen up to learn:
- How IT channel solution providers are thriving, despite today's challenging economic environment
- Why it's so vital for you to focus on the right priorities
- How to tune out the irrelevant noise and distractions
Define What Your Firm is All About
Many IT channel solution providers flounder around as glorified independent sales reps for the channel or partner programs that they belong to.
However, when you sit down over coffee, lunch, or drinks with the program managers for these IT channel programs, you very quickly find out that the solution providers that excel don't just sell and support various products, platforms, and technologies.
These small business technology providers that shatter the sales records aren't really trying to sell at all. Rather, these firms have figured out what their prospects, customers, and clients really want and need most...and they fill those needs.
The problem with engrossing yourself into a single IT channel program is that it's way too easy to end up with a severe case of tunnel-vision. Remember, when you're a hammer, the solution to every problem looks like a "nail." However in the real world, some problems require "glue," "double stick tape," "duct tape," or in many cases, total, complete bulldozing and starting over.
So, why does your firm exist?
While your answer may vary, and every small business technology provider defines their firm's purpose a little differently, for many solution providers their firm's main goal is to build Fortune 1000-class solutions, that solve their small business clients' biggest needs with:
- Small business-friendly budgets
- Ease-of-use and reliability appropriate for companies without large on-site IT departments
Understand Why This Clarity is Crucial to
IT Channel Success
Oftentimes, owners and managers of small business technology providers, especially those that are new to the IT channel, spend a ton of time studying and copycatting competitors.
However, in doing so, these technology providers tend to make two incredibly flawed assumptions:
- Misidentification of the competition: The IT channel is a pretty complex ecosystem. As a result, a company that seems to be a direct competitor, may in reality only be an indirect competitor, or pseudo-competitor, or even just a wannabe-competitor.
- Overestimating competitors' business savvy: When looking at small business technology providers, where an owner or manager doesn't have much financial or accounting background, and there's no in-house CFO, controller, or accountant, you'll often find that these businesses are a lot less profitable than they seem on the surface, especially through your limited lens of external competitive intelligence. Plus, these same competitors are many times hemorrhaging cash a lot faster than their management teams even realize.
So, at the end of the day, you need to understand your market and your core business.
And that's why it's so crucial that you have tremendous clarity of purpose about why your firm exists as a small business technology provider. This clarity is also essential if you want to:
- Grow your firm with more substantial, more profitable, and more professionally gratifying small business clients
- Differentiate your firm from more transaction-oriented, hit-and-run technology providers
- Clearly explain your firm’s value proposition to bottom-line-focused small business owners and managers
- Lay the foundation for fiercely loyal client relationships
Know How and Why Veteran Small Business Technology Providers Accept Only Serious Clients
If you and your firm have been around for a while, you likely have discovered that not all small businesses are created equal. There are vast
differences in size, industry, business needs, IT needs, temperament, profitability, and long-term opportunity.
To navigate these often shark-infested waters, you need to understand how and why to:
- Draw the line in the sand
- Insist on business-class products
- Position networks and systems as platforms for driving bottom-line results
- Hand-select universal value-adds and rapid ROI-builders
All of these topics are covered step-by-step at great length, using field-tested, proven strategies, as part of your SP Home Run Major League Membership
Find Out How and Why IT Channel Solution Providers Step Up as Each Client's CIO
For a non-technical small business owner or manager, that doesn't come from an IT background, there are very few things as frustrating as having three or four IT vendors each finger-pointing at each other and playing the blame-game. "It's not our fault, it's their fault."
The reality is that if the owner of a restaurant chain, or the senior partner in an accounting firm, or the office manager in a group medical practice wanted to become a professional referee among bickering techies, they probably would've chosen a career in IT.
One of your biggest value-adds to your small business clients is shielding your clients from the behind-the-scenes interoperability and integration challenges...and just make IT all work together. Period.
No reasonable small business client expects you or your staff personally to know "everything." But these same small business clients do expect you and your staff to know where to go for the answers, and to bring in the needed subject-matter-experts when necessary, to solve their IT problems.
That's what an IT manager or CIO does in a larger company, and it's exactly
what you need to provide for your small business clients, when you step up and operate as each client's CIO. To do so effectively and profitably, you must:
- Envision each client's IT future
- Assess your small business readiness
- Know where small businesses get IT support
- Figure out which services to offer and products to support
- Decide how to bill and what to charge
- Recruit your virtual IT dream team
- Align with software and web developers
- Become a virtual IT rock star
Again, all of these topics, for thriving as each small business client's CIO, are covered step-by-step at great length, using field-tested, proven strategies, as part of your SP Home Run Major League Membership.
Excel at Managing Upgrades and Rollout Projects
When a small business client of yours commits to a major system installation, upgrade, or rollout project, what's the first thing you typically do?
Most small business technology providers, after a few celebratory rituals, begin to break the large project into more manageable, digestible, bite-sized chunks: typically phases, milestones, and tasks that line up with a calendar. These project management basics allow you to more easily delegate various parts of the project and track the progress towards major milestones.
In the course of managing upgrades and rollout projects, you'll almost always need to:
- Wear the project manager hat
- Get your single point of contact on board
- Plan and reach out to the front lines
- Test, deploy, and train
- Troubleshoot common problems
And just as was mentioned a few moments ago, all of these topics, for successfully managing upgrades and rollout projects, are covered step-by-step at great length, using field-tested, proven strategies, as part of your SP Home Run Major League Membership.
Since 2002, we've been advocating that IT channel solution providers and small business technology providers focus on growing their businesses by delivering soup to nuts, outsourced virtual IT solutions for non-technical owners and managers of local small businesses. The days of being able to pass the buck, with something along the lines of "it's not our fault, it's their fault," have long since passed.
Small businesses, especially those owned and managed by those with rather limited IT knowledge, now more than ever desperately need a single point of contact for anything and everything having to do with their specific IT needs.
And these small businesses are willing to pay a premium for this privilege. Why? Because the last thing in the world these small business owners and managers can afford to waste time and resources on is listening to lame excuses from multiple technology providers that each blame each other for a project's shortcomings or failures.
However, you also need to recognize that growing your business by delivering soup to nuts, outsourced virtual IT solutions is one of the final pieces of the puzzle. There are several steps that you must consistently and systematically take in the early stages of the sales process, in order to get a large number of small business clients signed on for your firm's outsourced virtual IT solutions.
So You Still Have to Know...
- How to cost-effectively and consistently acquire highly-targeted IT leads
- How to get the sales sequence right
- Why you need to differentiate between sales calls and technology assessments
- What to do to qualify your leads
- How to stay focused during initial sales calls
- What the key steps are for selling proving ground projects
- What to say to overcome common IT sales objections
- How to integrate IT sales best practices into your business as a whole
- What to do about all the substandard IT problems, deficiencies, and vulnerabilities that you find
- When is the best time and how to migrate your new customers and existing clients to long-term, ongoing IT service contract arrangements
- What to do to extend your reach from both a marketing and technical perspective with your contractors and partners
And again, all of these topics are covered step-by-step at great length, using field-tested, proven strategies, as part of your SP Home Run Major League Membership.