Episode 74: A roadmap for your MSP’s development

Episode 74: A roadmap for your MSP’s development

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Paul Green's MSP Marketing Podcast
Episode 74: A roadmap for your MSP’s development
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In this week’s episode

  • Do you create technology roadmaps for your clients? Then you really should create a development roadmap for your own business too. This week Paul details how you can create a clear plan for the next couple of years, to help you focus on the right things
  • Also on this week’s show, did you know bees and your prospects have something in common? In the same way flowers use something called “signals” to attract bees, Paul talks about which signals need to be in your marketing to attract prospects
  • Plus listen out for a brilliant motivational interview with Paul’s special guest. And there’s a great book recommendation for controlling your finances

Show notes

Episode transcription

Voiceover:
Fresh every Tuesday for MSPs around the world. This is Paul Green’s MSP Marketing Podcast.

Paul Green:
Hello. How are you doing today? Here’s what we got coming up in this week’s episode.

John Davis:
Hey, this is John Davis, a corporate action hero. I’m a comedy sword-fighting stuntman who takes people to the next level of themselves.

Paul Green:
We’re going to be talking about something called marketing signals. I’ll tell you what they are and why they’re so important to your MSP. Plus, towards the end of the show, I’ve got a great book suggestion for you today. It’s possibly the best book I’ve ever read on managing your cash flow and making sure that you personally take plenty of money out of the business.

Voiceover:
Paul Green’s MSP Marketing Podcast.

Paul Green:
The other day, I was talking to some of my clients that I’m working closely with in our service called the War Room. And we were talking about putting together business plans for your business. Now, I think business plans have limited use. I think when you’re starting up your business, a business plan is a good way of just thinking through all the big issues. Although, my experience, and I’ve started three businesses, is that the best way to put together a business plan is just get started. Have a vague idea of what it is that you’re doing, but be prepared to reinvent everything almost every single day until you find something that works. That’s my experience, anyway.

Paul Green:
So, we were talking about business plans for mature businesses, and there’s certainly plenty of help out there. There’s things like Traction, which is a book written by Gino Wickman, and it features the entrepreneurial operating system, and that’s a way of planning and growing your business. And in fact, I’ve got a special guest coming up in about two, three weeks’ time talking about the entrepreneurial operating system and how you can use it. But I think for most MSPs, a formal business plan is not really something that you need. A formal business plan for a mature business… The risk is it becomes just a document that sits in your computer or you print it off and it goes in a filing cabinet somewhere. Do people even do that anymore? I don’t think you need a business plan.

Paul Green:
What I think you need for your MSP, assuming you’ve been going for a few years is actually a roadmap. And when you think about it, that’s kind of an obvious thing to do because you put together technology roadmaps for your clients, don’t you, when you’re doing QBRs or strategic reviews, whatever you like to call them. You go out and you sit down with your clients, and you talk about where they want to go in the future, where they want to take their business, what they want to achieve, what’s going to hold them back from achieving that. You talk about what are the things they lie in bed at night worrying about. What do they want? What do they need? What’s the goal? What’s the end vision? And you take all of these things, and certainly, if you’re doing strategic reviews in a very formalised and structured way, then you are putting together a technology roadmap for them so they can see and you can see where the investment is going to be in the next two to three years.

Paul Green:
It actually gives a good peace of mind to your clients and to you how their technology is going to be improved and how they’re going to invest in it. So, if you do this for the clients, why not do it for your business? Why not put together, not a technology roadmap, but a general development roadmap for your business?

Paul Green:
We’ve been running a roadmap in our business for a couple of years now, and we do it in a very, very simple way. It’s simply a document. Now, we keep that document in our project management software. We happen to use something called Basecamp. I don’t think the software makes any difference because it is literally a collaborative document that me and my senior team, the two of the guys that help me run the business, and I worked with them very closely. It’s a list of things that we would like to do. I’m looking at it right now. And it lists out sort of three sections, really. It’s got a series of development projects, that’s one section. Then we’ve got product roadmaps for our two core services. So, we have a service called the MSP Marketing Edge, which supplies white-label content to MSPs all over the world so you can use it as if it’s your own content. We’ve got a product roadmap for that. And then we have a product roadmap for our other service, which is called the War Room, which is where I work closely with a small number of MSPs to help them grow their business.

Paul Green:
And that roadmap is a very, very simple document, but it’s actually a very powerful document because what it lists in priority order is the things that we’re going to do next. So, I’m not going to tell you what’s on our roadmap, but if I was to look at the things that we’ve got coming up here, we’ve got some fairly hefty projects coming up. In fact, the one that’s currently at the top of the queue is going to take about two months to execute, to implement. That’s brilliant. And it’s a really hefty project, but it’s going to be a major leap forward for us because here’s the thing. We had the idea for that project probably about seven months ago, but we realised it was going to be a big thing. It wasn’t something that we could just do very quickly so it went onto the roadmap.

Paul Green:
And the more that my team and I talked about it, the more I thought, “Do you know what? If we can do this, if we can implement this, this is going to make a big difference to the business.” So, I decided to move it up the roadmap. It started at the bottom and it’s worked its way up to the top fairly quickly because of its merit. If we get this project done, it’s going to move the business forward. And that’s the purpose of the roadmap. So, you can take all of those ideas that you have, and in fact, let’s be honest, your world has so many ideas, doesn’t it?

Paul Green:
There are so many services you can buy, so many things that you can do. And now you can have a roadmap and have a place to dump all of those things. You might hear about a brand new ticketing portal, for example. In fact, one of my clients was talking about CloudRadial the other day with such joy and such love in his eyes. He absolutely adores that software. It sits between your PSA and clients, and they can log tickets, and they can do all sorts of things, and they can see progress reports, and you can do warranty management, and all sorts of other things in there. This isn’t a free advert for CloudRadial. but the point is, let’s say you had to look at that and you thought, “This is amazing. We should do this.” Well, that’s not a 10-minute thing. Is it?

Paul Green:
That’s a project. That’s a proper project and it should go on your roadmap because you can then look at the other five or six things on the roadmap and say, “Right. If we were to implement this, would this move us forward? Would this give a greater impact and get us closer to our goals than any other project?” And this is where a roadmap really comes into itself. It’s there to help you hit your goals. So, I have a very clear goal for my business for this year. Do you have a clear goal for your business? Do you know what it is that you want to achieve within a certain period of time? If you do, then you really should have a roadmap. And all of those ideas have a place to live and it can be reviewed on a weekly or monthly basis, or whatever is appropriate for you.

Paul Green:
Go on. Pull all those ideas together, get them into a document, get your team to have a look at them, and then don’t forget that you, as the leader of the business, you have the final say on the roadmap. It’s you that moves things around and decides what’s next, and what are we going to put back and do later in the future. One thing, by the way, about making a roadmap public. A couple of my clients, since I’ve been speaking about this, have said, “Hey, could we see your roadmap, particularly if we’re subscribed to one of your services, could we see the roadmap?” And I will never make our roadmap public, never, ever, ever. And I know many software companies do. Obviously, we’re not a software company, we’re providing a service. So, I know there are lots of public roadmaps out there, but here’s the thing.

Paul Green:
The second you make your roadmap public, you’re committed to it. And I have a very strong roadmap for both of our core services. We’re constantly, constantly tweaking them and making them better and improving them, and adding value. But the second I make a roadmap public, I’m going to be held to account for that. And I don’t want to be held to account because I want to remain fast, and speedy, and swift. I want the ability for us to have an idea on a Monday, realise on a Tuesday that it’s a massive idea but could make a huge difference, and start implementing it on the Wednesday, if that is appropriate, if our roadmap allows us to do that. I can’t do that if I’m being held to account for a roadmap that it was published several months before. I think publishing your roadmap actually puts you at the mercy of your clients, waiting for those things to come out. So, I definitely wouldn’t publish your roadmap. Keep it as an internal thing so you can remain fast and swift, and you can put in place big changes when it’s appropriate for you to do so.

Voiceover:
Here’s this week’s clever idea.

Paul Green:
I’ve been listening to quite an interesting audiobook. It’s called Alchemy and it’s written by a guy called Rory Sutherland. So, he’s an advertising master based here in the UK. You may have heard of the Ogilvy advertising agency. It’s called Ogilvy and something at the moment. It was started by David Ogilvy who’s considered to be one of the greatest advertising people ever. And the current vice chairman is this guy, Rory Sutherland. So, he wrote this book, Alchemy, and it’s kind of about the psychology of marketing. It’s about influencing people. Now, one of the things I’ve just been listening to in this book is something that Rory calls marketing signals, and signals are critical indicators to a potential buyer about the quality of something.

Paul Green:
So, before they choose whether or not to buy something, they will be influenced in a negative or a positive way by the signals. And signals actually occur in nature as well as in marketing. So, let me give you an example. If you look to nature and you look at flowers, which Rory actually quite hilariously describes as weeds with good advertising. So, flowers want to entice bees to come on in, pick up their pollen, and spread it around. But, of course, the bee only has a finite amount of time and energy. So, the flowers invest huge amounts of their own energy to grow very specific types of petals and to output very specific colours of flowers which sends signals to the bees. And essentially, the signal they’re sending is hey, look at our beautiful flowers. You can trust us. We’ve got loads of nectar and pollen. Come on in.

Paul Green:
There’s a side note, actually. Rory talks about the fact that flowers build a brand with bees. We think of brands as just a human thing, but no. Flowers have brands with bees as well. Bees actually come to trust certain types of flowers for always having pollen and nectar, and that makes them do repeat purchases. If you give bees a series of choices of flowers, they will most often go to specific flowers more regularly because they know that there’s more likely to be pollen and nectar for them. I have to say, I found that absolutely fascinating that even in nature, it’s about building a trust relationship. Now, let’s have a look at some marketing examples of signals. So, I’m going to give you three examples. Now, the first example is let’s say you wanted a coffee and your choices are a Starbucks or a local coffee shop next door.

Paul Green:
And the Starbucks is really well lit with an expensive decor. It’s got those posh Starbucks mugs. And it’s got all those drinks with fancy names. Now, the other coffee shop next door is badly lit. The window is dirty and it sells its coffee in old faded mugs. However, they only cost 50p or 50 cents, whereas, of course, we know how much Starbucks coffees cost. Now, from a basic economic point of view, the cafe seems like the better deal, doesn’t it? It’s serving the same kind of coffee for a fraction of the price that Starbucks charges. So, it should be full. However, in this situation, many more people would choose Starbucks. And the reason for that is the signals suggests that you’ll have a better experience. Look back at the signals. The Starbucks is well lit. It’s got an expensive decor. It’s got posh mugs and fancy drinks, everything that the local cafe doesn’t have.

Paul Green:
See, selling stuff and doing marketing isn’t always about the money. The economists might look at everything from a pure cash point of view, but actually, there are so many other factors that affect why we buy something or why we don’t buy something. Let me give you another example. Let’s say you want to buy a gadget and you’ve found the same gadget for the same price on two separate websites. Now, both of them have the same amount of information about the gadget and both have positive reviews from customers. However, one of the sites also has negative reviews from customers who were unhappy, and critically, those negative reviews have replies from customer services about how they’re going to fix the problem, followed by replies from the unhappy customers saying, “Oh, thanks very much for fixing that. We’re now happy.” More people would buy from the site with the negative reviews.

Paul Green:
Why? Because this site demonstrates that if there’s a problem, their customer service is of a high quality. The marketing signal here is that if there is a problem, they will fix it. Now, the other website might do exactly the same thing, but they are not sending out the signal suggesting that they’re doing it. Let me give you a third example before I turn this back to your MSP. Weddings. Now, this is an example that Rory Sutherland mentions in his book. Let’s say you get invited to two weddings, both good friends of equal status, but sadly, both of the weddings are on the same day at opposite ends of the country so you can’t go to both. One invitation turns up in the post. It’s in a luxury envelope. It’s got a high-quality and clearly expensive gold embossed card. The other invitation is WhatsApped to you by your friend.

Paul Green:
Which wedding are you going to go to? Most people are going to go to the wedding where you’re invited in the post with the expensive gold embossed card. Why? Because the signal says that the wedding communicated by WhatsApp is going to be of a lower quality than the other one. Why do we go to weddings really? Free champagne? Come on, let’s be honest. Yeah, yeah, we’re going to celebrate people, but also it’s a nice scoff up, isn’t it? And an a nice do and a disco and stuff.

Paul Green:
Anyway, what does all of this mean for your MSP? Well, let’s look again at the definition of signals. Signals are critical indicators to a potential buyer about the quality of something before they choose whether to buy it or not. So, ask yourself, what are the signals that your potential buyers are receiving? Think about your website. If your website is rubbish, please do something about it. What about the quality of your photos, your images, your videos on your website? What about the believability of your social proof, your testimonials, your reviews, your case studies? What about the quality of your LinkedIn profile, your photo on LinkedIn? Is it you from today or is it a younger, less gray version of you from yesterday? What about the way that your phone is answered?

Paul Green:
You know that 12-year-old tech that you’ve got? If he ever gets near the phone… Hello? What kind of signal does that send to a potential buyer? Oh, he’s not in right now. I’ve actually heard that. I’ve called a client and had a 12-year-old tech say exactly that to me. “Oh, he’s not in. Sorry, bye.” And you’d think that would never happen in your business, but you’d be surprised. You really would be surprised.

Paul Green:
Think about the physical quality of anything that you send out to people in the post. Are you using the thickest paper, the thickest card, nice embossed stuff, that kind of card that’s got texture to it? Are you putting stamps on envelopes? Are you using quality stuff, or are you doing it cheaply on your laser printer? Properly professionally printed stuff always, always outperforms crappy printed stuff that you’ve done on your own printer because the signals are better. And finally, how organised and structured do you appear to be? Are you early for sales calls or are you late? If you’re late for a Zoom or a physical meeting when you’re trying to sell something to someone, that sends a really bad signal. It’s the same way as someone who’s coming for a job interview. They turn up late, what kind of a signal does that send to you?

Paul Green:
I used to have a philosophy in my last business where we recruited a lot of people fairly quickly and fairly regularly as well. And the philosophy was if they’re late for the job interview, they can’t get the job and won’t get the job. Someone who turns up five minutes late for a job interview has not planned ahead. They’ve not allowed for traffic and they are sending a signal if you hire me, I am going to be late on a regular basis because they can’t even be bothered to be here on time for the job interview. So, you’ve got to ask, what are the signals that you’re sending to your leads and your prospects, and do you know what? Your clients as well. Quality really, really matters. It’s a big part of the marketing signals that you’re sending out.

Voiceover:
Paul’s blatant plug.

Paul Green:
Only one MSP per area can buy this. What is it? It’s the MSP Marketing Edge. As I mentioned earlier on, my service where we supply you marketing content that you can use as if it’s your own. There is so much that you get every single week, every single month, and some very exciting marketing tools, some secret weapons that you can use to get more new clients for your business. It’s only £99 plus VAT in the UK or $129 everywhere else in the world. And we will strictly only sell it to one MSP per area. Already, we’ve got more than 400 clients and you can go to see if someone has already beaten you to your area. Go and put your postcode or your zip code into the MSP Marketing Edge website. It’s mspmarketingedge.com. Go on. Go and check, see if your area is still available, mspmarketingedge.com.

Voiceover:
The big interview.

John Davis:
Hey, this is John Davis, a corporate action hero. I’m a comedy sword-fighting stuntman who takes people to the next level of themselves.

Paul Green:
What a great job title, a comedy… What was it? A comedy fighting stuntman, sword-fighting stuntman.

John Davis:
A comedy sword-fighting stuntman.

Paul Green:
Amazing. So tell us, tell us a little bit about your life then, John, and your story because you have got an amazing backstory.

John Davis:
My backstory is a very interesting one. I had a dream of being a stuntman and a fight director from a very young age, and then started going down that route and was doing really well. And then one day, I climbed into a van to help a friend of mine unload a bunch of boxes, and I picked up an 80-pound box of clay and I turned to set it outside of my van, and my upper body separated from my lower body, and it left me paralyzed. A doctor told me, “You can’t be a stuntman anymore.” But using my mind and my mindset, I was able to get out of that bed and go on to do over 4,000 live comedy sword-fighting shows all over the world, including over a hundred on the front lines of Iraq and Afghanistan on six USO tours.

Paul Green:
So, before we come onto what a comedy sword-fighting show is, take us back to that moment because, obviously, what I want to talk about today is resilience for us as leaders, running our businesses, being at the top. It’s not quite out in Iraq. It’s not suffering that kind of injury, but it is lonely and it is mentally tough. So, take us back to when you had that injury. And I guess it was a couple of weeks or a couple of days in when it started to sink in for you that this is serious. This will probably affect the whole of the rest of my life.

John Davis:
Well, it actually wasn’t a couple of days. It was about an hour afterwards when the doctor said to me, “John, you have a condition known as spina bifida occulta and you’ll never be a stuntman or a fight director, or do anything physical in your life again.” For me, it was a matter of how do I get past this now, this new moment. Somebody had given me a book called the Tao of Jeet Kune Do by Bruce Lee. And it’s a philosophy of martial arts on his point of view. But one of the things that talks in there is about being like water and being flexible when adversity arrives. Over the course of the time, I started working with through mental flexibility and I eventually did create a system called the Five Fs, which gets us through adversity and onto creating really successful outcomes, no matter what’s going on in your experience.

Paul Green:
Okay. We’ll come back to the Five Fs a little bit later on. So, tell us about the sword-fighting then. How did that start and what did you do?

John Davis:
Well, I wanted to be a sword fighter and I got dragged to a Renaissance festival. And for those of you who don’t know what a Renaissance festival is, that basically means that I was dressing up in tights and wearing weird outfits and sword-fighting and living in the woods on the weekends. I created a comedy show called Hack And Slash, and it travelled all over the world. One of the things that it did do for me was it got me to go to a lot of different countries with the USO. I actually want to back up a little bit because there’s a difference between an action hero and a superhero that I want to touch on very quickly. An action hero is an ordinary individual who creates an extraordinary result in service of others. And a superhero is a person who wears their underwear on the outside of their pants, is irradiated by goo, and has superpowers.

Paul Green:
Except we like watching people with their pants on their outside, particularly with Marvel movies.

John Davis:
Isn’t that the benefit of Zoom and all this COVID-19 stuff? Now, we can sit in our homes and our underwear and do like a live streaming.

Paul Green:
Exactly that. The only problem comes when you say something like, “Join me on a zoom call. Pants are optional.” Because for you, pants means trousers, but in the UK pants means your underwear and you don’t want to be that guy doing that on that Zoom. Certainly not.

John Davis:
Well, there’s been a couple of guys who’ve learned that lesson very hard in the United States.

Paul Green:
Yes, they have. Yes, they have all over the world, I think. So, you now work with lots and lots of business owners and you do lots of motivational talks. I imagine your speaking circuit gigs have been severely restricted in the last year or so, but you talked about the Five Fs. I mean, let’s talk about resilience, and let’s talk about being a leader, running a modern business.

Paul Green:
So, the vast majority of people listening to this podcast, it’s a small business. And I define small as it could be anything up to 50 employees and still be small. But these are people who are there every day. They’re in it every day. The responsibility lies with them. The vast majority of people listen to this would never have chosen to be in that position, but for the fact that they just wanted to run their own business. They had a passion for it. There was a spark. There was that entrepreneurial seizure as Michael Gerber talks about it in his book, The E-Myth Revisited. And a lot of people get 5, 10, 15 years down the line and they’ve got 5, 10 staff, and there’s a burden. There’s a burden of running that business. So, how do we keep that tough mental resilience going week in, week out, month in, month out?

John Davis:
Well, the number one thing is to set your fear aside, and most people don’t know how to do that. And it’s the first of the Five Fs is fearlessness. But you can’t necessarily set something aside if you don’t know what it is because most people don’t understand what fear is. When I ask them what fear is, they go silent. The thing is, all fear really is, is emotional reaction to some future event that may or not happen with your focus on it being a negative outcome. It’s just negatively focused uncertainty is all fear really is. The thing is you have to set that aside. Well, most people don’t know how to set fear aside. Well, since it’s an emotional reaction, the way you do it is you shut off your primal fight or flight response. And the way you do that is by exhaling.

John Davis:
Because whenever you get that moment of fear, we all gasp for air. And as we gasp for air, we’re actually filling our lung up. And so, most people feel like they can’t breathe when they’re scared. It’s not that they can’t breathe. It’s that their body is so full of air that the body’s not letting air out because your body wants to be able to run further and faster. Like on Broadway or in theater or in a new venture, or if you’re a business owner and you’re in the middle of COVID, and you’re feeling all that stress and anxiety of what are we going to do, exhale. Because that moment of exhalation will give you the chance to have everything come back. On Broadway, if a actor forgets their lines, they’re trained to exhale, relax their muscles, and all their thoughts come back, and all their words come back to their minds so they can actually do the lines.

John Davis:
So, there’s the first is fearlessness. The second aspect is once you set that fear aside and get to that relaxed state, then you really need to start looking at your objectives, your goals. You need to get focused. Number two, fearlessly focused. So, now you’re going to focus on an outcome but focus on a positive outcome because that mindset of positivity will take you further than anything else. So, you got fearlessly focused. The next one’s a tough one. It’s follow through. You actually have to get off your butt and something. Right? But here’s the interesting thing about getting off your butt and doing something. There’s only one moment that you can do something and it’s your present moment. You can’t go to the store next Thursday right now, and you can’t go to the store last Thursday right now. You can only go to the store right now.

John Davis:
So, this is the only moment you have to do things. And so, if you’re sitting in this moment and you’re trying to take your company to that next level, you’re trying to achieve more and use COVID as a catalyst for growth, then you need to realise that you don’t have to struggle to get somewhere else. You need to leverage these present moments. Start stacking present moments here that are successful, and that success will come to you in your present moment because when you experience it, it’s going to be in your present moment. So, you got fearlessly focused with faith. Faith we did not talk about yet. So, let’s talk about faith, belief, confidence. You have to believe you can do it because if you don’t believe you can do it, then you’re not going to do anything. So, fearlessly focused with faith with follow-through.

John Davis:
And the last one is one we’ve already kind of touched on a little bit is flexibility. When something comes up that seems contrary or an adversity to what you’re trying to achieve, you have to realise that you’ve set a goal and that goal has been set, and so this thing has come up into your experience because it’s something that has to be addressed for you to reach your goal. It’s not something that’s there to stop you or limit you from reaching your goals. It’s something that needs to be addressed. A lot of people will look at a new adversity and they’ll allow themselves to freeze up and fear. So, you drop back into your fear mode which means you start the process again. Right? So, you got to stay in that space.

Paul Green:
And do you think most business owners are driven by fear in that we might not feel that fear every day, but we are driven perhaps driven to avoid fear or to work ourselves away from fear, which probably in the process limits what we can do with our businesses?

John Davis:
Absolutely. I think a lot of people get into the fear mode. I think the most successful people don’t. If you look at like Apple, they didn’t have a business plan until they were 10 years in because they just took action on what they were trying to do. So, if you’re trying to go out and achieve something, you can get into analysis paralysis, but you got to realise that analysis paralysis is just your fear of not getting it right. That bold action is the thing that’s going to take you further than anything else. I work with a lot of IT groups. Just recently did an event for a jewellery company here in the States, and I worked with their IT department. And it was very interesting because we were talking about effective communication. What I’m talking about that fear aspect is you got to realise when someone’s contacting an IT group or, as you said, an MSP group, the interesting thing is they’re already coming to you with some fear.

John Davis:
Their product is not working. Their something is not working. And the worst thing you can do is communicate to them from your own fear place. You’ve got to realise that what you’re trying to do is you’re trying to work from their experience, not your own. In fact, you’ve got to set your own aside. One of the things I do in one of my corporate speeches is when I’m live with an audience, I’m teaching these Five Fs, and the last thing I do is I go out to the audience and I find the most timid person I can find, and I bring that person in front of the room. And sometimes, that’s thousands of people. Their biggest fear right there is what? Being in front of that room with all their peers looking at them.

Paul Green:
Yeah, yes, you’re right.

John Davis:
The second fear was when I hand them a bullwhip. The interesting thing, the whole time I’m communicating with them, I’m communicating with them from their experience. First thing I say to them is… They come on stage and they can see their fear. I turned to the audience, I say, “Isn’t she a rock star?” And they cheer for her. Right? So, I’m already giving her positive reinforcement. Then I say, “Have you ever been fishing?” And she says no or yes. Whatever the answer is, I work with it. I basically start talking about fishing because I want her mindset to be in a calmer space, not into a pain danger or frisky Friday night space. Right? I want to be this space because when you say whips, people think things. Right? So, I go from that situation, I say, “Okay, we’re just talking about fishing.” So, I start talking about how do you cast a fishing rod. And then I finally get her to crack the whip and she cracks the whip because she’s fishing.

John Davis:
Then I pull out a target. I hold it in my hand, and I say, “Now, all I want you to do is focus right where you want it to go.” And she casts her fishing rod, and she takes the target out of my hand. But the whole time I’m talking to her, I’m leading her from the space of this is your experience. When I finally pull that target out and I hold it out there in front of her, I say, “Did you hear the whip crack?” And she says, “Yes.” I say, “So, you already know how to crack a whip.” And I nod to her and I give her a positive reinforcement. You already know how to crack a whip. I actually say that multiple times. I say, “Now, I just want you to cast your fishing rod. But listen, I promise you will not hurt me.” Sometimes when you’re leading somebody, you got to lie to them. I’m kidding. I’m kidding. But I promise you, it won’t hurt me because her next biggest fear in that moment is hurting me.

Paul Green:
Yeah.

John Davis:
So, by addressing her fear outright and promising her that she won’t, what happens is I’ve never been hit and I’ve had people who’ve never touched a whip in their life who’ve literally cracked the whip, taken the targets out of my… If you go to my website, you can see video of people taking targets out of my hand, who have never even held a whip.

Paul Green:
It’s such a clever thing to do. And I can imagine watching that on stage and being so inspired by that. John, tell us a little bit more about what you can do with business owners and tell us how we can get in touch with you.

John Davis:
Easiest way to find me is corporateactionhero.com. And what I do for mainly for business owners is I come in and I charge people up when they don’t feel like they’re moving forward. Right now, we’re in what I would call a Groundhog’s Day situation, where every day feels the same and we’ve got adversity all around us. I break them out of that adversity and I dropped them into their inner action hero, and I get them stepping out there, and be action heroes rather than reaction zeros. And I take them out there and I charge them up. And when I finish one of my programs, your audience is screaming, “We’re action heroes,” and they’re screaming, and it’s a great time.

Voiceover:
Paul Green’s MSP Marketing Podcast. This week’s recommended book.

Pete Matheson:
Hi, my name is Pete Matheson and I used to run an IT MSP here in the UK. My book recommendation is Profit First by Mike Michalowicz. It is by far, for me, one of the biggest kind of impacts that it had to our business. Running my own business, we had a single bank account and we were generally paying things in and out of that same bank account. Profit First actually taught us to split this into multiple bank accounts, and essentially, it would fix a lot of problems for us. When we came to the end of the year and we had our Christmas party, we’d have enough money there to just pay for the Christmas party and for the staff and their drinks. It would just generally allocate your funds, so that rather than getting to the end of year, holding your finger up in the air and going, “Hmm, how much profit have we made?” all you need to do is look at your bank account. It tells you straight away and you’re done. So, it’s by far one of the best recommendations I’ve had.

Voiceover:
Coming up next week.

Justin Esgar:

What’s up, I’m Justin Esgar, owner of Virtua Consulting Group and host of ACES Conference. I’m going to be on the show next week talking about goals and habits and how you can make your business better.

Paul Green:
We’re also going to be talking about whether or not you should hire a marketing agency to do all of your marketing for you. Plus, I’ve got three ways that you can dip your toe into a vertical, into a niche. Three easy ways for you to test to see if that’s a good marketing route for you going forward. I love verticals. I recommend them to most MSP. So, here’s how you can test whether it’s right for yours. We’ve got all that and more coming in next week’s show. Have a great week in business and in life as well. See you then.

Voiceover:
Made in the UK for MSPs around the world. Paul Green’s MSP Marketing Podcast.

 

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Hi, I'm Paul Green. Couple of times a week I send great marketing advice to 2,766 other MSPs around the world. Want to join them? I'll also send you a free copy of my book Updating Servers Doesn't Grow Your Business

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