By Bob Vogel, B2 Marketing
Spoiler alert: there are more than five. But I’ve interviewed literally hundreds of IT service pros over the years, and I keep seeing and hearing recurring themes among the successful ones.
Ironically, even knowing whether or not you are successful is one of the top ingredients. So many IT service companies are living from month-to-month, quarter-to-quarter, even year-to-year, without any clearly defined goals. Without goals, there’s no way to measure success. Tip 1: If you don’t have clearly defined goals for your business, establish them right now and put them in writing.
Don’t know what your goals should be? That’s where the second ingredient comes in. Join a community of your peers. You can do it alone, but you’ll do it better collaborating with others. Tip 2: There are a lot of excellent IT service peer groups from which to pick. If you’re not a member of one of them, do some research and join one.
Peer groups will help you better absorb best practices, when it comes to retaining your clients. That leads to the third ingredient – knowing how to build client relationships and leverage them into expanding revenue. Tip 3: Don’t be a stranger when it comes to face-to-face meetings with your clients, and when you meet with them, making those meetings meaningful. Give them your insights about their business and actionable recommendations that they can follow.
Expanding existing client relationships, however, is only one path to growth. The fourth ingredient to successful business is having multiple channels of growth. Tip 4: Always be on the lookout for a competitor or colleague who is ready for a merger, and if someone approaches you, remember that sometimes you’re better off with a smaller piece of a much bigger pie.
Last, if you want to remain in control, in charge and undiluted, then you need to be really good at new client acquisition. Damn good, in fact. That’s the fifth ingredient for success. Tip 5: Build for yourself a repeatable and scalable process for lead generation and closing. Offering and delivering compelling IT assessments is a proven path to success.
Dana Seiler, CEO of Vantage Point Solutions, is one of many successful IT service entrepreneurs I’ve met with the five ingredients for success. Click here to listen to Dana elaborate on this point in his own words.