There’s no shame in asking for help. And in business, knowing when to seek help is more likely to lead to a wise decision, rather than taking a shot in the dark.
For MSPs, especially those that started as VARs, a little help can get you a long way into a successful path. Plenty of resources are available online to put your managed services business on the right path.
When seeking information on managed services best practices, sales and marketing tips and recommendations on how to manage your relationship with vendor partners and customers, MSPs have three primary sources of information – industry associations, vendors, and trade media websites.
Advice and instruction on just about anything related to managed services – how to select services and vendors, price your offerings and market those offerings – are available from those sources.
Two of the most comprehensive sources for managed services knowhow are the IT trade association CompTIA and the MSPAlliance. CompTIA is an industry-focused group that deals with various aspects of IT, including managed and cloud services.
Those resources include CompTIA’s Managed Services Community, whose mission is to “advance the managed IT services industry through the promotion of best practices, the development of tools and templates and the refining of educational tracks for MSPs.”
Through the Managed Services Community, CompTIA offers various tools and resources, events, training and networking opportunities. CompTIA also offers a Managed Services Trustmark for MSPs that meet certain criteria in delivering high-quality services.
The MSPAlliance is a group created exclusively for the managed services space. The group offers MSP certifications, sponsors events, provides resources such as MSP insurance and consulting, and a knowledge base that includes blogs, online forums and FAQs.
Additionally, APC by Schneider Electric partners who certify in our Managed Services Program are eligible for assisted funding for new ASCii and CompTIA memberships. These industry associations offer members exclusive access to MSP reports, education, marketing enablement, communities, networking, and more. Interested partners should contact their APC representative to take advantage of this offer.
Just about every IT-focused news site provides news, analysis and information on managed services. Those include CRN, TechTarget, and Channel Insider. A few online publishers have sites that focus exclusively on managed and cloud services.
MSPMentor, the first news website specifically for MSPs, was launched more than a decade ago and still publishes plenty of useful information, including blogs by industry insiders, how-to articles and industry news. MSPToday delivers news and analysis on managed services, as does ChannelE2E. MSPMentor’s sister site, Talkin’ Cloud, focuses on news and analysis for cloud services providers.
Online publishers also run webcasts, webinars, video Q&As, podcasts that are easily accessible from their various websites. These online events, as well as conferences and get-togethers throughout the year, put you in touch with managed services experts that can share valuable insights on how to succeed in this space.
Vendors in the managed and cloud services space, such as Kaseya, Solar Winds N-able, Continuum, Datto, Connectwise and Autotask, typically have a knowledge base with white papers, blogs, sales and marketing tips, ebooks and other resources to help you run your managed services practices.
APC by Schneider Electric offers plenty of managed services online resources, including our recently published Managed Services Matters ebook. The ebook covers a range of topics relevant to managed services, including practical advice on how focus on value over price, choosing vendor partners, onboarding new customers and marketing strategies. You can also learn more by visiting our webpage.
MSPs are spoiled for choice when seeking online resources to help run your businesses. Bookmark the sites you find most useful and, remember, asking for help is better thank making the wrong decision.