Valuable MSP Peer-to-Peer Conversations at DattoCon

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Jun 25, 2019

Image Above: GreatAmerica and Collabrance team members talk with MSPs at DattoCon (2019).

Remember to leverage your time at events with other MSPs

After recently attending DattoCon in San Diego, I could not help but think about all the conversations between MSPs.

In fact, many MSPs shared their biggest takeaway from DattoCon came from their conversations with other MSPs.

Not only did I notice the peer-to-peer conversations, but the organizers of DattoCon did as well. Due to the overwhelming demand of peer-to-peer conversations, on the last day organizers increased the number of breakout sessions from three to six, including one dedicated just for Women in the IT Channel, and they were still not sure if it would accommodate everyone’s interests.

Where to connect with MSPs at events?

Events are a great networking opportunity for MSPs whether on the vendor floor, during educational presentations, or the cocktail hour. At events like DattoCon, you’re surrounded by peers who are also interested in consuming best practices to enhance their Managed IT business. Remember, even if it is a sponsored dinner and you’re worried someone is going to try to “sell you” while you eat, DO NOT hesitate to attend! Even a sponsored dinner, is a great opportunity to have a quality conversation and meet other MSP peers. You never know what you might hear or get feedback on that just might change your business’ trajectory.

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Image Above: GreatAmerica and Collabrance team members enjoy dinner with MSPs at DattoCon (2019).

What to talk about with MSP peers?

For example, one of the dinner conversations at DattoCon included an MSP who shared how a few of his clients had serious security vulnerabilities, yet they refused to pay to have the proper IT solutions implemented. He was also concerned about the possibility his MSP might be liable since they are a client. You could sense the frustration, and so another MSP’s suggested using a “hold harmless” document to protect his managed services business. When asked how often a hold harmless document leads to the end-user re-considering and agreeing to the necessary IT solutions, they shared, “almost 80% of the time.” The insight and inside information peers were sharing, especially the “what not to do’s” could be invaluable to an MSP.

Not sure what to talk about with your MSP Peers? Here are some ideas for questions to get your conversation started:

  • Is this your first year at the event? If yes, what do you look forward to the most? If no, what do you enjoy most at the event?
  • What niches does your MSP focus on and why?
  • What are the biggest challenges your experience in your MSP business today?
  • What’s next for [company name] after the event?
  • What tactics is [company name] implementing to increase efficiency?
  • Do you partner with any of the vendors who are sponsoring the event?
  • What breakout sessions have you found valuable, or plan to attend?

How to stay connected with MSPs?

Some of the best takeaways from a conference might be the conversations you have with your peers. If you meet another MSP who you can share ideas, struggles and best practices with, be sure to get their contact information! A few ways to stay in touch with them include connecting on social media, exchanging business cards, finding out which peer groups they participate in, and what other industry events they attend.

Our favorite part of attending MSP events is also the conversations with you. We are eager to talk with MSPs to learn more about the struggles you face, so we can take your feedback and implement it in effective solutions that help you overcome challenges in your MSP business.

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About The Author

AJ Schroeder

AJ Schroeder, Account Manager at Collabrance, is responsible for helping service providers make the best use of their resources. AJ is a resource to help partners scale their MSP business more efficiently and profitably. AJ graduated from the University of Iowa with a bachelor’s degree in Finance & Economics.