Trapped In A Lifestyle Business For 15+ Years
I started my IT business before I was even ready to start a business. I figured I would work in corporate America first, learn a little and then be ready. But I was just 27 years old, and God had other plans. In 2002, Net A Corp Technologies was born.
After growing up in a family where money was scarce, I was suddenly seeing $150K a year and thought, “What the hell is this? This is great!” Being the guy attracted to the shiny objects, I would invest my profits in real estate and other business ventures. But NEVER back into my business. Young and naive, I ran my LIFESTYLE BUSINESS for far too long. It was time for me to start investing back INTO the business in the form of marketing.
I Thought Marketing Was A Black Hole
Marketing? For years we did nothing. Nada. In fact, I thought marketing was a black hole that you throw endless amounts of money into. To me, marketing was an art, not a science. I was living off of the unpredictable, up-and-down roller coaster that was referrals. I was running myself ragged.
At conferences, I would see peers I had followed for years. Their MSPs were steadily growing while mine was not. Finally, at the age of 38, I was like, “I don’t want to be 50 and doing the same crap. Something has to change. I have to change!”
My first step toward purposely growing my business was cleaning house and investing in a more capable team, beginning with our IT Services Manager, Angel Rodriguez, who has now become my right hand. Then I decided to cut my salary down to $52K – something I had never done prior. Both of these set us up for success in getting our marketing plan implemented.
2 Major Actions That DOUBLED Our Revenue In One Year… Then DOUBLED IT AGAIN The Next Year!
In 2020, our revenue was at $517,595. It was that year that we took TWO IMPACTFUL ACTIONS to transform our small, four-employee operation into a multimillion-dollar MSP with 14 employees.
ACTION #1: We focused intensely on a vertical.
ACTION #2: We finally started marketing.
First, we got intentional and specific about our target market: K-12 private schools in South Florida with 250 to 800 students. We had been encouraged by coaches and peers to pick a vertical and focus on it back in June of 2020 – and it was a good decision that paid off. In 2021, we nearly doubled our revenue, and we closed 2022 more than doubling our revenue again!
Second, in being intentional about marketing (and deciding to finally get serious about growing my business), I knew we needed someone to fully manage our newly formed marketing department. My nephew and godson, Frank Garcia, had been interning with us while attending Florida International University, studying economics. When he graduated, he joined us full-time as our marketing manager. The following campaign successes are a result of Frankie and his team’s hard work.
How We Added 9 New Customers And $17,300 In MRR
The most successful campaign we have done since choosing our target market and talking to schools has been our Emergency Assistance to Non-Public Schools (EANS) campaign. EANS is a program from the American Rescue Plan resulting from the pandemic that allotted $2.75 billion available to governors to aid private schools.
Our first plan of action was to register our DBA IT for Education and website www.ITforEDU.com as an approved EANS vendor. Next, we became a member of www.ClassWallet.com, a portal through which schools pay for technology. Finally, we launched our campaign with our EANS-focused messaging, using a combination of a letter mailed, emails and phone call follow-ups. In the campaign, we educate private schools on applying for this technology grant and inform them that we’re an EANS-approved vendor.
Our goal was to land 100 raw leads, 80 qualified leads, 20 appointments and 17 new customers closed. Currently, we are at 119 raw leads, 55 qualified leads and 25 appointments. To date, we have closed nine new clients for $17,300 in additional MRR from this campaign alone!
We Doubled Down On Our Funded Technology Campaigns
While the EANS funding program ends in 2024, E-Rate funding is an ongoing program for schools that has been around since 1996. E-Rate helps ensure that schools and libraries can obtain high-speed Internet access and telecommunications at affordable rates and keep students and library patrons connected to broadband by providing a discount on eligible services. We became an approved vendor for that program as well and have a dedicated E-Rate campaign that we expect to also win us new business.
It Took 8 Months To See Results And We ALMOST Gave Up (Don’t Make THIS Mistake!!!)
For the first eight months we started investing heavily in marketing, I was like, “My money is going away, but nothing’s happening!” Little did I know that all that time, prospects were NOTICING us and CONSIDERING us. Then…gold mine!
That’s why it’s important to trust the marketing process and stick with it.
It’s also key to remain teachable. A lot of the process we’ve gone through is reliant on self-growth. I can’t be the same owner of my business at $500K as I will be at $1M and $2M. I must evolve by remaining teachable. Two years ago, I was in the weeds 90% of my time. Today, I can’t even remember the last time I serviced a ticket. Both Frankie and I have remained teachable and have grown as a result.
Anyone Can Do This!
When I review our numbers with Frankie, I’m still in awe. In 2020, our revenue was at $517,595, with $33,014 in MRR. Then Frankie, Angel and I committed to marketing. In 2021, we nearly doubled our revenue at $1,033,815, with five new clients and $56,146 in MRR. And last year, we did DOUBLE our revenue at $2,167,167, with five more new clients and $95,944 in MRR!
There are three keys that made this happen. First, having a DEDICATED marketing manager like Frankie is an absolute must. Second, giving that dedicated marketing person the time and resources they need to do the marketing. Third, finally focusing on a very specific target market was huge for us. Hire a marketer, give them a marketing plan and go after your target market with a vengeance. And you too may double your revenue!
For more information on Net A Corp Technologies visit: www.netacorp.com