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5 Simple Ways to Break the $1M Revenue Barrier

Posted February 8, 2017by Frank Bauer

Who Wants to be an MSP Millionaire

Who wants to be an MSP millionaire? OK, so we’re really talking about annual revenue for your business, but still impressive, no? Isn’t the dream of achieving those financial goals part of the reason you started your practice in the first place? Maybe you haven’t reached this important milestone yet. You used up all of your lifelines, and the pressure of the “hot seat” got to you. That’s OK! Chris Harrison might judge you, but we won’t. Instead, let’s put two minutes on the clock as we demonstrate five simple steps you can take to hit your $1 million revenue mark!

1. Be a business consultant, not a technician

Are you speaking to your clients in their language? Hint: If your conversations consist of IT technical jargon, you’re doing it wrong! Clients ultimately only care about keeping their business profitable, and your managed IT services are a means to that end. One of the main reasons that businesses need your managed services is to gain access to your technology and expertise. Convince your clients that they can't afford NOT to work with you. If their networks are down, their employees are less productive, and their business loses money. You must be a subject-matter expert that’s invested in your SMB’s success. Are you offering a holistic, proactive IT solution or are you only there for them after disaster strikes and the damage is done? Be your clients’ trusted advisor, their “phone a friend!”

2. Include marketing in your business plan

Tell the truth. Are you trapped in a “I get all my business from referrals” mindset? If you want your MSP business to hit the $1 million revenue mark, you’ll have to get past this. This is NOT your “final answer.” Whether you decide to bring on full-time marketing staff or work with an agency, you must align marketing with sales and build it into your business plan. We understand that this can be time-consuming for many of you, but you want to get found? Before you can sell your products, you have to sell your expertise and credibility in the IT services space. Achieve this trusted reputation through inbound marketing! By doing so, you’ll deliver higher-quality leads to your sales team, thereby lowering the cost of client acquisition! Don't have a sales team? We had a feeling you'd say that...

3. Hire sales talent

Leads alone won’t earn you the big bucks. Yes, your marketing efforts will bring your MSP business increased exposure, but what next? If you want to accelerate sales enough to hit the $1 million revenue target, you have to hire professional sales people! You can’t just put your tech in a suit and call it good. Strong sales talent knows how to talk to prospects, understands the sales funnel, and is able to change the way they sell. Know you need to hire a rockstar MSP sales rep, but not sure where to start? Consider reaching out to recently or semi-retired sales professionals, who are more interested in looking for something to do than making the big bucks. They can help build the sales process, temporarily conduct the sales, and assist you with hires later on.

4. Make a plan

The next step is to create a plan for growth. Set goals and appropriate timelines for achieving those goals. You’ve got your first objective, earning $1 million in revenue, now how are you going reach it (besides reading this post)? What other objectives should your MSP business plan include?

A) Number of clients
B) Amount of monthly recurring revenue (MRR)
C) Number of devices you service
D) All of the above

If you answered D, cue the audience applause. That’s correct! Before you set goals, make sure they’re Specific, Measureable, Attainable, Relevant, and Timely (SMART). Then, track your progress in meeting them, and adjust as necessary!

5. Smart-source your business to increase efficiency

One way to expand your service delivery but keep overhead under control is to leverage a third party NOC and/or service desk for those mundane, low value tasks that eat up too much tech time. Managing in-house the sheer volume of tickets you could offload requires more staffing than you can afford. About 34% of your MSP peers are outsourcing their IT help desk to gain access to IT resources they couldn't otherwise find. By smart-sourcing, you can pay as you grow, offer the whole suite of services you’d like, and avoid costly overhead.

Additionally, the Continuum NOC and Help Desk are smart-sourced solutions you can leverage to transform your techs into project managers. What do I mean by that? Their shift will be rid of day-to-day maintenance or filtering through tickets and instead, they’ll be more empowered to focus on revenue-generating projects and serve as your clients’ trusted business advisor.


Well, there you have it! Taking these five steps will help you become an MSP millionaire, but you can’t just expect success to happen overnight. If you want to break the $1 million revenue barrier as an MSP, you have to understand the basic fundamentals of running a business and ensure that your business model is built to scale. So, are you ready to get started? Final answer.


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Frank Bauer is Sr Channel Development Manager for Continuum. Frank can talk, a lot, trust us, but doesn’t feel comfortable talking about himself, so we’ll do it for him. Frank has been serving the IT Channel since 1998 starting as a marketing assistant with a regional white box manufacturer. His career has spanned many positions in sales management with organizations such as Tandberg Data, Zenith Infotech and Artisan Infrastructure. Frank is also a proud, honorably discharged, veteran of the United States Navy, serving 2 years in Yokosuka, Japan and Everett, Washington. When we can get Frank out of the office, he enjoys tasting craft beers, spending time with his father and Pittsburgh sports.


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