[00:00:00] Speaker A: Fresh every Tuesday for msps around the world. Around the world. This Paul. Paul. Paul. Paul. Paul. Paul. Paul. Paul Greens, MSP Marketing Podcast 21. Here's what I got in store for you this week.
[00:00:14] Speaker B: Hi, this is Josh Fonger. And if you are stuck in your business, working long hours with no end in sight, you have a systems problem. Why don't you join me on Paul's podcast and you can find a solution to your systems problem.
[00:00:26] Speaker A: And on top of that interview with Josh, we are going to be talking about a very specific word which should not appear too often on your website. I'll tell you what that word is later on Paul Green's MSP marketing podcast. I want to start this week by talking about something that's actually made me feel a little bit uncomfortable within our own business in the last six, nine months or so. And I've kind of figured out this week, last week what it is that's made me feel uncomfortable about it. And I'm going to tell you about this because actually, I think there's some lessons in there for how you make change happen within your MSP. I will admit, I think this is kind of going to be like a therapy session, podcast therapy. So think of this, that you're the therapist, I'm the patient on the Shay's launch, the big chair thing in your therapy practice. And I know I obviously can't hear you, but I'm going to look up every now and again. If you could just nod sagely, that would just keep me going. So we have over the last six to nine months. Well, let me go back a step so we have, in case you don't know how we make money. So we don't make money on this podcast. We don't accept sponsorship or promotion money or anything like that for this. You can't product place onto this podcast. This is just me talking to you. And we get guests on because we think they're interesting guests. So you can't pay to be on here. So we don't make any money on this podcast. We make all of our money on a service called the MSP marketing Edge. And that's why you hear me bang on all the time about the MSP marketing edge, because I think it's amazing. It's a fantastic service. It's like a marketing subscription service that we provide to more than 700 msps all around the world. And we only work with one MSP per area. And that means that there's no clash with their competitors using it. And we give them tons and tons of marketing materials and content and support and guidance, and we have a great community and it's amazing. And it's been going since 20 16, 20 16, 20 17 time. So it's quite a mature service and that's what I spend pretty much 80% of my time doing, is working on that. We made a decision, we being me and my kind of right hand guy in the business is a guy called James. We have a couple of James's in our business, but I have James who works on, if you like, product development. And we made a decision around about the middle of last year where we decided we needed to bring in some external help to sort of go up to the next level. So I think when you've been running something for six or seven years and maybe this is the same for you in your MSP, you get to a point where you're like, right, we want to keep improving, we're constantly improving it, but we want to up our game, and to up our game, that means we need to open up our mind and our brains to new ideas and new ways of doing things. So we've brought on a procession of experts and consultants. We've done a ton of research, so much research you wouldn't believe. And it's been eye opening. It's taken us off in directions we would never have gone to. We've hired ux, like, usability, experience people, ui people, designers. It's been amazing and it's also been horrendous. And that's not just because of the cost of it.
I say spent. We've invested some serious cash into this, but it's not that that's made me feel uncomfortable. And it's only really been the last couple of weeks that I've figured out what's made me uncomfortable. What we've been doing for six to nine months is figuring stuff out, right? So we've been hiring these great experts and really, really getting to grips with what they've suggested to us, and we've formed plans from it and we've created ideas. And as I say, we've gone in a direction we would never ever have thought of going. So it's absolutely worth going there. But what we haven't done is taken rapid action. And the reason that's a problem for me is because that's a core value for me. It has been for as long as I have run my own business, which is since 2005. And actually, if I look back at the previous sort of 1012 years before that, actually about 14 years before that. When I worked for other people, I was known as a fast, rapid action taker. If you and I came up with an idea and I said, oh, yeah, I love that idea, I'd just go and do it. In fact, often I'd just go and do it that day, that hour, that minute. Because sometimes when you have a great idea, and particularly if it's easy to get your head around it, you just want to take action on it. And I kind of look at it that I built my first business, which I built up, and it was hard and difficult, and we had to change business model a few times. But then it was successful, and I sold it, and I did that by taking action. And I've had some other ventures that haven't been so successful. And I knew when I shut those ventures down, and one I lost about 45,000 pounds on, I had a property thing that I lost. It wasn't quite that much, but I lost some money on. I knew when I shut those down that I had given them my best and that they weren't viable because I'd taken rapid action. Do you see what I mean? It wasn't like I was sitting there saying, oh, but we didn't do this. We didn't do this. I'd done all the things that I thought were right, and still it didn't work. So I kind of got to a point where I cut my loss. There's something called a sunk cost fallacy, which is horrendous, where you spend 45,000 pounds on something and get no return. You think, oh, I've got to keep going with it because I've sunk all these costs in. But it's a fallacy. And luckily I knew that and I was able to walk away from that particular business venture anyway, the point is, being a rapid action taker is there in my core. And the work that James and I have been doing is not about taking rapid action. In fact, we've deliberately slowed ourselves down and thought and talked and asked for more opinions and brought in more people and asked know lots of msps, lots of experts, their opinions, and we've come up with this great plan, and now we're starting to implement that plan, and now we're starting to implement it at speed. But it's the lack of action taking that has really, really hurt me. Now, I say this to you because I think I have fought James a little bit. In fact, I should send this podcast. I don't know if James actually listens to the podcast. This will be a test, won't it, James, if you listen to the podcast, our own podcast, that makes us money. Well, helps us to get new clients. Send me an email and tell me that you listen. That's the test there. No one else tell him. All right, that's going to be the test. Anyway, James, I kind of owe you an apology in that I have fought you a little bit in the last six to nine months because I've wanted to crack on and do stuff, and you've quite rightly been slowing me down and making me look at the bigger picture, and it has worked out really well. We have an astounding plan, which we are now busy taking action on. So the reason I think this is relevant to you as an MSP, and let's wrap up this therapy session, is, I think actually most of the time you need to be a rapid action taker. And actually, isn't that one of your core skill sets for you as an MSP owner? You're good at taking rapid action, right. And that comes out of being a tech who is responsive to people's problems and maybe even also being a tech who wants to be proactive to stop so many problems from coming up reactively. So I think most msps are really good at proactive fast action taking, but it tends to be about the tech stuff and often the marketing stuff and the business growth stuff is the areas where they're not fast action takers. In fact, I can tell you who the fast action takers are in the marketing and business growth stuff because they're the successful people. And every, what, five to ten weeks or so, we get an MSP on this show as a guest being interviewed about how they grew their business. And always, always there's a long lag, isn't there? They do 5678 years, maybe even longer, where they're doing just all right. And then something changes and they sort of rapidly take off. And a lot of that comes down to rapid. Well, they have more resources to rapidly implement more change. So I guess that's the, I feel like I maybe have rambled a little bit on this, and thank you for listening, my therapist friend. But I kind of guess the point I wanted to get across on this was you taking rapid action is a great thing, especially on your marketing and your business growth. But there does come a point in any business where you have to stop and you have to come up with a bigger, better plan. And we are now rapidly actioning like you wouldn't believe. There's a frenzy of activity going on because we've got a very big and very detailed plan to enact and to make happen.
I don't know. If we were to do this again, would I do anything different? I guess maybe I would find little actions that I could do along the way to make me feel more comfortable. Or maybe I've developed as a business owner. Maybe I've grown emotionally. I've been a business owner for 19 years now. That's a very long time. And maybe actually it was time for me to grow and move on and pick up a new skill set. And maybe doing those big pause projects is that I'd love to get your feedback on this or maybe even if you are a therapist to ask me about my relationship with my mother. Yeah, why not? Drop me an email? It's hello at Paul greengreensmspmarketingedge.com. That was a very specific thing to say, wasn't it? Here's this week's clever idea.
There is a word which probably appears on your website. But the problem with this word is it is a massive turnoff to the leads and prospects that you most want to speak to. And I believe that you should go through your website, look for this word and eliminate it wherever you can. So what is this word? What is this awful, terrible word which kills your prospects and leads? That word is we.
And by that I mean we as in you and me together. Or rather you talking about we, the people in this business. We is a word which, if it appears too often on your website, it's a turnoff because it means that the website is too much about you and not enough about your leads and prospects. And actually the most important people in the world, the heroes, when they are reading and consuming your website, the hero is the person reading it at that point. It is the lead or the prospect. They are the hero. And you've got to make sure that your website talks directly to them. Interestingly, on a website you talk to one person at a time, by the way. So you may have 20 people simultaneously reading your website on 20 different computers at a time, but each of them is having a one on one experience with your website. So you write that website for the one person that you are talking to at that point. And that's why the word we is so damaging. Because when you talk about we, you're talking about you and your business. Now, it doesn't mean that the word we is absolutely awful, terrible. Get rid of it. It must never be on. What it must be on is on imbalance. There has to be a balance and what's the word that we want to see at least two or three times more often than we see the word we. That word is you, Y-O-U. So every time you see the word we on your website, I want to see at least three u's appearing. One we to three u's. I've just made that proportion up, that ratio up, but it sounds like a good ratio to me. The thing is, you see, when you say you, you are talking directly to the reader. When you say we, you're talking about us, the business. And you've got to remember, psychologically, they do not care about you one iota until the second they are nearly ready to sign that contract and move their managed services over to you. Up until that point, all they care about is themselves. They care about achieving their goals, they care about what they want, what they need, they care about all of those things. They don't care about you. So in your website and all of your marketing, you've got to be constantly asking yourself is, what can I do to talk to them? And the we to you ratio is absolutely one of the first places to start. Now, let me give you an example of how you can easily turn a Wii into a you. Let's say you've got a line which says, we are cybersecurity experts. We are cybersecurity experts. Let's flip that round. And how to make that more relevant and more interesting to your prospects is to say something like, you never need worry about your business's cybersecurity because you'll have access to a team of experts or access to expert services. I can't write very well verbally. I'm a much better typey writer. But do you see what I did there? Rather than saying, we are cybersecurity experts, you can flip it around and say, you need never worry about your cybersecurity because. And you could actually slip a we in there, couldn't you? You could say, you need never worry about your cybersecurity because we are cybersecurity experts, or we are experts at this. The point being is you are more likely to hook me in the reader if you're using the word you than if you're using the word we, because it feels more relevant to me. And the more relevant something feels to me, the more likely I am to be engaged with it and to actually go on to take action with it. So a suggestion for you, you could just go through each page and search the page for the word we, just to check your proportion. Or you could go on to the Google Advanced search. You can google that. Google Advanced search. It's a page that not many people know about. I use it all the time because you can search for very specific words and you can search within a specific domain. So you just Google, Google Advanced search, put in the specific word, it says search for this exact word. So you put in we and then it says like site or domain and you just put in your website and that will then search your website because of course Google's already indexed it, right? So it already knows what's on there. But it will show you the results for how many times a specific word appears on your website, which is just a very smart way to do it. And I would go, in fact, you could do that today. Talk about rapid action like we were talking about in the last bit. You could do that today. It would take ten minutes to find the wheeze and it would take another ten or 20 minutes to turn those into more you statements. A very, very quick win on your website just by searching for the wees and turning more of them into use. Paul's, Paul's blatant plug latent plug one of my favorite activities to do of an evening is to sit and go through my MSP marketing Facebook group, seeing what people have posted, replying to comments dropping in, nuggets of advice if I can. I've got my iPad here and I'm just going to go and check to see what comments we've had in the last 24 hours. Oh, by the way, if you aren't a member, why don't you come and join us there? It's completely free so long as you're an MSP because we don't take vendors, it's a vendor free zone. But if you're an MSP, it's free. Come and join. I'm there every day and we can talk about growing your business and improving your marketing. So just go into your Facebook app, on your phone or your computer or your iPad or whatever. Go into the search bar at the top, type in MSP marketing. Now we have got a page. We never use that anymore. Who uses Facebook pages these days? You're looking for the group, so make sure you go onto groups tab. You'll see my little face, Paul Green's MSP marketing Facebook group and then to apply to join you just have to ask a couple of questions. So we validate that you're not a vendor trying to sneak in and that you are a real MSP. Come and join me in that Facebook group. And let's talk about improving your marketing.
[00:15:24] Speaker B: Hi, I'm Josh Fonger, founder of WTS Enterprises.
[00:15:28] Speaker A: Hello, Josh, and thank you so much for joining me on this podcast. Now, you are the guy who promises that you can work less and earn more, which, let's be honest, that's what every single MSP wants from their business. So we're going to explore exactly how any MSP can do that. And I know that you have a book offer as well, which we'll talk about at the end of this interview. Let's, first of all, just rewind a little bit. Tell us more about you, Josh. So what's your background and what gets you to a position where you can come on the podcast?
[00:15:56] Speaker B: Yeah, definitely glad to be here. Appreciate it. In terms of being on the podcast, it's all because this book right here, those watching the video book, work the system. I did not write the book. Sam Carpenter did. But I've been helping companies implement the message in the book for over ten years. And that all happened because before I met Sam Carpenter, I was a traveling business consultant, helping clients with inside sales, outside sales, financial planning, forecasting, hiring, firing, training, you name it. And what I was finding as a consultant is that after I left working with the companies, maybe six months or a year later, those problems that I thought I fixed as a consultant would come back and companies and owners would go back to their old habits. And so what I realized is there was something I was missing. And Sam taught me through the book, and now I do it in my consulting and coaching, is that if you don't document the systems of your business, you're going to revert back to old habits. And so now I help companies document those systems, those strategies, so that they can do what the book says, make more operationally, their systems get better, and they can work less doing it, because it's no longer based on them doing it all themselves, wearing all the hats. It's now based on the systems they built.
[00:17:12] Speaker A: Yeah, that's really interesting, because many msps are really, really good at documentation for their clients, but they're not so great at documentation for their own systems, their own operational systems, let alone slightly more complicated things like marketing and sales and whatsoever. So we'll come back onto that. Josh, tell us a little bit more about this book and tell us who SAM is.
[00:17:32] Speaker B: Yeah, so, SaM Carpenter, author, worker system. The whole premise of the book was that SAM was working in his own business for 15 years, working nights, days, weekends. It was a 24/7 answering service, and he got to the point where he just couldn't put any more hours in and he wasn't able to make payroll. He thought, I'm going to lose this Business that I've worked so hard after 15 years. And at that point, he was working 100 hours a week because he was literally just sleeping there, living there, doing everything. And one night in a dream, he basically had this vision of his Business laid out on a table, all the separate pieces of his Business, the sales, how we answer the phone, how we deposit the checks, all the different aspects of his company laid out as little parts. And he thought, if each one of these parts was made perfect and I put it back together, would I have a perfect Business? And so at that point, it was just a kind of a vision in the middle of the night without sleeping for weeks on end. He thought, I'm just going to try fixing a system in my business. In this case, it was how to deposit a check into the bank. And this was, I guess this is over 20 years at this point. And he wrote the process for doing it, which he had personally done for many years, and he realized he could delegate that to someone else and they could do it perfectly without him, hence freeing up a couple of hours a week of his time, which then, of Course, he could dedicate to other systems. And eventually he freed himself from working 100 hours a week to 2 hours a month, and meanwhile having his income go up 100 times. So basically, it put him from doing the Work himself to putting him in charge of being the engineer of his business and his success. And that's what the book is all about. And, yeah, entrepreneurs love the book because they oftentimes feel like they're wearing all the hats. And they would love to have a plan to actually grow a company where they don't have to be there all the time.
[00:19:25] Speaker A: Yeah, absolutely. And of course, there are loads of books about this, aren't there? You've got books like the checklist Manifesto by Atul Gawande, which is a great book. It was built to sell by Jim Warrello and the classic 1984 the Emyth revisited with Michael Gerber. And I love these. I suck Hoover up, suction up all of these books, because they all have very different ways of telling you the same thing, which is, a, you have to systemize the business, but b, you have to document the systems. And that's clearly what this book is about, is about that documentation. So tell us, delve a little bit more into your epiphany when you were returning back to these businesses. And I think you said earlier that they'd slipped into bad habits. Is that what all business owners do? If they don't document the systems that.
[00:20:06] Speaker B: They'Ve put in place, eventually they will. I wouldn't say all, that's a strong word. But they think they have their systems right, because they have people there who've been there a while, maybe two years, three years, five years. But the second they lose that person, they realize, oh, actually, I didn't have anything documented was just in that person's head. And so oftentimes I'll work with clients where their key manager will have maybe left or had a baby and didn't want to come back or someone gets sick. A few of my clients, one of their key managers, had a heart attack, and then they're like, well, obviously that was horrible. But also, we have no idea how to do what they did. And so it becomes very obvious that the infrastructure of the business didn't really exist. They weren't really at a safe place. They just had people who've been there a while. And so that's the first thing, is it mitigates risk. And, yeah, people do go back there. But of course, the other advantages is once you do document a system.
So when I used to do clients do consulting, clients would fly out there. People always thought that the systems of the business were running well. They say, hey, we're all working hard. We all know we're doing it's going as well as it could anyways. Why do we need to write things down? But once you do write things down, you find there is better ways, there is faster ways, there is less expensive ways, there is ways to improve the quality, the speed, the technology, the ability to delegate, all of these possibilities become a reality once you take the time to write down a few of your processes. And that's what I try to help companies put in the discipline to make that happen and then to make the discipline across the board, across all their staff. And then they realize that if their team is thinking in systems, their team is writing these procedures, they're going to actually have a company that scales and grows without them having to do it all themselves.
[00:21:56] Speaker A: Yeah. So everything you said there just sounds easy. And yet millions of business owners struggle to do. Why? Why do we find this so hard?
[00:22:05] Speaker B: Well, the objection, when people are on the phone with me and they're like, josh, I'd like to buy this, but I just don't have enough time to do it, and I just don't have the money to do it right.
[00:22:13] Speaker A: Now.
[00:22:14] Speaker B: So it's always time and money, and it's because for whatever reason, they think if they just work harder, they'll eventually get there. And it's not working harder, it's working smarter. And so everyone that I work with, I try to, as quickly as possible, free up extra cash flow and free up extra time. And if I can do that, then they can see it through. But, yeah, people always max themselves out. And so the idea of working on your business sounds like what it is, which is work, and they don't have time for more work, and so they stay stuck in that cycle. And that's why most of my clients are usually 50 plus, because they're like, okay, I've had enough. I've tried. I'm still here.
My younger clients, they still think they can muscle it out, but it's usually, my people are 50 plus and are like, okay, I've got to sell this company someday. I've got to retire someday. I need to do something different. And they're actually the ones that are more ready to make a shift.
[00:23:12] Speaker A: Yeah, that makes perfect sense. Okay, baby steps then.
Let's imagine right now you and I are talking to an MSP owner in their doing, okay, there's enough clients, there's enough staff, but they're kind of at that position where, as you say, if they go away for two weeks, the chaos kind of grows back over the business again.
What are the baby steps to get started? So is it as simple as your colleague Sam did of just writing down one thing of how we do it, how we do it this way and then documenting it, what would you advise?
[00:23:48] Speaker B: In some ways, it is as simple as that. But in terms of a strategic baby steps, I like to start with the leader, the owner, the managers, having them analyze their day to day and their week to week to figure out what they're actually doing and figuring out ways to document those systems, because that's going to free them up to lead, manage, expand the business, and if they're not freed up, then everything else isn't going to work anyways. And so I try to focus on the leadership first, and once they get a few wins and they have that extra capacity, and it could be anything, really. I mean, I was talking to not an MSP, but a law firm that is a managed service provider, not a technical standpoint, but from a legal standpoint, just last week, and she was doing these sales calls, and they were non technical sales calls. They were very simple. They were very routine. And I said, do you need to do these calls? And she said, well, actually, I have someone else who could do them all. I said, well, let's document how you could delegate those. And it took us like ten minutes. And then I said, well, how much time is that going to free up? She said, well, 2 hours a day. So 2 hours a day, five days a week was freed up by just a simple system.
And that's kind of what we try to do, is let them see, hey, there is a better way, there's a different way. You don't have to be the hero of every aspect of your business. And once we free up some of the time, then it's okay. Let's make this a company wide strategy. Let's make this a project where we can affect all the aspects of our business and we prioritize it from high to low in terms of what we want to get done. And through it, we'll find that there's a lot that needs to be changed because different departments will grow their own cancers, they'll go on their own tangents. And so what we want to do ultimately is have an efficient business from start to finish, which has a clear starting point for the client in terms of how they hear about your business. A clear way to sell, a clear way to package and price, a clear way to deliver the service, a clear way to manage the service afterwards. And if it's clear and it's consistent and it is strategic, then you find out that your systems can run really smooth. It's when everything is custom as you have problems.
[00:26:00] Speaker A: Yes. No, I can imagine. And actually, the reality is, in most businesses, there's very little that needs to be Custom, isn't there? There's small amounts of things. Unless, I guess, you're a very bespoke manufacturer or a Bespoke something. But even then, there's a whole series of other things. The banking is done the same way, the bookkeeping is done the same way, the phone is answered the same way. A couple of things I wanted to pick up on your answer from then was 2 hours a day doesn't sound a lot until you realize that's for an employee, for a Paid Employee, that's potentially a quarter of their working time, which is immense. That's like saying, well, you can save a week every month, a week of working time every month just by eliminating something that takes 2 hours a day. The other thing you said that lawyers might be thought of as managed service providers. I've got to take you to task with that one, Josh. We're not letting the lawyers in on this one. This is just for it. People with the lawyers, they can't have the term managed service provider. We're just keeping it for us. Okay, let's wrap up, Josh. So thank you for joining us on this podcast. Tell us a little bit about what you do to help businesses, because clearly this is your working life and you must be very good at this to have been doing this for the last ten years. And then tell us about this book offer you've got.
[00:27:10] Speaker B: Sure. Yeah. Apologies. Should have shared an example of one of my other MSP clients, or possibly a lot of people in the it industry, or my son who's doing cybersecurity. But yeah. So basically, the final say here is, anyone who's interested in what I'm talking about in terms of organizing your business, I recommend to go to wtsenterprises.com again, wtsenterprises.com, which is where you can get a summary of the book for free. And of course, you can also buy Sam Carpenter's book on Amazon or anywhere else. And that's really my goal, is to help busy business owners who are stuck in the business to find freedom. And the first step is to get a copy of that book.
[00:27:50] Speaker A: Paul Green's MSP marketing podcast, this week's recommended book.
[00:27:56] Speaker C: Hey, everyone, I'm Mariana Henninger from brandmagnetic.com, your home for brand videos. And one of my favorite business books is ten X is easier than two X by Dr. Benjamin Hardy. It is a phenomenal book to help you think about how to work smarter, really in your business rather than work harder. The idea being that when you're thinking about how I can ten x my business, you are going to be focused on very specific things that would make the impossible possible if you were to do those things. Whereas if you're just thinking about growing incrementally, all of a sudden you're spreading yourself thin through so many different venues. So really recommend ten x is easier than two x.
[00:28:40] Speaker A: Coming up next week.
[00:28:42] Speaker B: Hi, I'm Craig Fulton, Evergreen, and we're a holding company focused on MNA in the MSP market.
[00:28:48] Speaker A: If you want to hear more details.
[00:28:49] Speaker B: On that, get tuned in.
[00:28:51] Speaker A: And on top of that interview next week is a bit of a staff special. We're going to talk about some nasty surprises that staff spring on you, and also three ways to make your team feel very special working for you. Join me next Tuesday and have a very profitable week in your MSP need in the UK for msps around the world, Paul Green's MSP marketing podcast.