Lucy’s Sail: Chapter 3: Business plan, not a co-owned extinction of your business

OwnWebNow
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In light of our recent global expansion I feel it is my duty to explain to you just what kind of business plan is needed to make your business successful in the world of software as a service. I think a lot of people have this mentality that SaaS is simply a way to replace all onsite infrastructure and that couldn’t be further from the truth. I mean, what would you do if I came to you and said this:

story.miss.cleo “Ok Mr. ITPRO, here is what I’m going to do. I am going to spend a ton of money marketing directly to your customers the advantages of not hiring you to build their business infrastructure but to have them sign a contract directly with us so we can have a financial as well as a service provider relationship with them. Oh you? Umm. Ok, how about this, we’ll gave you 5% off the revenues. We can co-own the customer! Thats about 50 cents a month for a hosted Exchange, surely you can run a  business with that much money, right? Ok, listen, since I’m such a nice guy, I am going to double that! I’ll give you a whole dollar during the first year.

You can be a specialist trusted advisor reseller recommender of our service! Just turn all of your customers over to me!”

Ridiculous, but most people believe that is the SaaS model? What kind of an asshole would ever pitch that? I would rightly expect you to punch any moron that said something like that square in the mouth.

But enough of my telepathic abilities, let’s talk about our recent announcements in a way that can actually make you money instead of destroying your business.

Have you ever wondered just why Microsoft has completely fallen apart over the last few years, seemingly chasing one cloud technology after another while the existing problems just mount higher and higher and their efforts go largely ignored? They are doing so because Microsoft is on the defensive against companies like Google, SalesForce, Zoho and others that are promising incredible storage limits for just a few bucks a month (which is a deception to begin with because nobody actually ever approaches even 20% of the supposed limits without subscribing to every mailing list on the planet). But Microsoft has to fight the perception. Microsoft also has a problem that the world of business software is losing its pricing premium and the customer demands immediate gratification. Google and Yahoo have been able to provide communications mediums for free or very little using ad supported portals. How is Microsoft to compete in a marketplace where free is the king?

They can’t, they don’t and they end up chasing one failed idea after another all while burning all the bridges they built with the partners over the years.

Sooner than later, even your own customers will be asking you why they can get SalesForce for $X and you are proposing a system that seemingly does the exact same thing but needs a Windows Server, an Exchange Server, a SQL Server and enough licensing and labor to buy a luxury sedan.

These are not the customers that are going to buy a server.

These are not the customers that are going to buy managed services.

These are the customers that are willing to pay for the advice, that will one day grow to the point of needing some more – remember, Microsoft software is still the king of business software. Not to mention all the other needs that come with even a mobile office – software backups, licensing renewals, antivirus, etc. Who is going to provide all that?

Are you man enough to take their money?

Listen, you can dig yourself into a mental hole of thinking that none of these services are ever going to be taken up by anyone or that anyone interested in them is not your target client. Good luck. Or you can draft a business plan that includes these services in your portfolio so when opportunities present themselves for you to spend time consulting, you can actually get paid for talking to them it instead of building their networks. Time is money after all.

Now, why should you bother partnering with us?

Global presence.

24/7/365 support.

Business with leadership involved in the IT community, accessible and able to make special deals depending on the needs.

But you already know that, after all, you are reading this blog.

What you don’t know, and what separates us from the others in the market is:

Pricing and Contract Power

It is up to you what you charge your customers. It is also your god given right to let them nickel and dime themselves to oblivion if they so choose. The new Shockey Monkey service order panel that every MSP will get for free will let you set your own pricing on your portal, set limits on the amount of services they can order, let them pick and choose which services are a la carte. You actually get to build your business, I know, what a novel idea 😉

Branding

Starting with July, all our solutions and customer access control panels will be brandable in the same way that ExchangeDefender is. Your logo, your color scheme, your terms of service, your business.

Centralized Management

No more getting services through tickets, all the service management will be central, consolidated, under your logo, at your price and managed from a single panel in Shockey Monkey.

MSP Tool Integration

Connectwise, and working with Autotask to import the asset information, statistics and service data into the way you manage your business.

Oh… and there is a little something else to this:

WE WILL NEVER DISRESPECT YOU BY IGNORING THE FACT THAT THIS IS YOUR BUSINESS, YOUR CLIENT AND YOUR CALL WHAT YOU CHARGE AND WE WILL NEVER COMPETE WITH YOU OVER YOUR BUSINESS AND WE WILL NEVER MOVE YOUR CLIENTS FROM YOUR ACCOUNT TO ANOTHER PROVIDERS ACCOUNT.

I think that was important enough to put in caps, because it differentiates one of the most important factors you need to consider in this whole equation: TRUST. If you cannot trust the company you are about to partner up with on the basics of business courtesy – respect for the partner-client relationship, respect for your right to set your pricing, respect for the right to provide your own support, respect for you to be the main point of contact and representation of the company – how in the world can you TRUST them on anything else?

baldwinYour clients trust you. We want to be in a position where you can trust us to run the servers and networks and make Exchange, SharePoint, Offsite Backups and web application hosting redundant, reliable and affordable. If you have a question about that, 877-546-0316 extension 500. My name is Vlad Mazek, I’m the CEO, and I’m here if you need a real partner to make a business around these new solutions.

Are you interested? I know you are because it’s ____ or ____ (comment for iPod)

Time to consider this stuff is right now. This minute. Because if any of the above is upsetting to your senses right now, just wait a few days. You’ll be livid. (or you’ll have an advantage – your call really) Enjoy your 4th of July, the announcements of the further global domination will resume, 10 days remember? 🙂

6 Responses to Lucy’s Sail: Chapter 3: Business plan, not a co-owned extinction of your business

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