Quiz: How much do you really know about ransomware?

Posted by Lauren Beliveau on Feb 20, 2017 11:15:00 AM

Ransomware has quickly evolved from simply blocking users from gaining access to their files to encrypting files and even attacking servers. Cybercriminals are also becoming savvier when it comes to disguising attacks, making it harder for businesses to avoid them. A recent report from IBM security found that one in two business executives have experienced a ransomware attack, and 70 percent admitted to paying the ransom to regain access to their data.

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Topics: Cyber Security

Ask Intronis: How can a PR firm help my MSP grow?

Posted by Lauren Beliveau on Feb 20, 2017 8:01:00 AM

 

Q: We’re trying to increase our marketing activities and visibility in the channel to attract new customers. So, we’re considering hiring a public relations firm to help coordinate relationships with the media and write press releases for us. Is a PR firm really worth the money? Are there additional ways they can help my MSP grow?

Hiring a public relations firm is a big decision. It’s often an investment of both time and money, but they can certainly help you gain visibility in the IT channel, craft your messaging to resonate with SMB clients, and even build a positive brand image. Essentially, a PR firm is an extension of your business—they can offer advice about your latest marketing campaign, alert you to new IT channel or managed service trends, or even help you promote your MSP business. They’re there to give you an extra set of objective eyes on multiple facets of your MSP business.

To give you an inside look at how a PR firm can help shape your MSP business, we spoke to Suzanne Collier from WhiteFox PR & Marketing. With more than 15 years working in the field, Suzanne is a seasoned PR professional, dedicated to helping businesses build and maintain a positive brand image. With her knowledge of the IT channel, Suzanne shared her take on how a PR firm can help grow your MSP.

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Topics: Ask Intronis

Tech Time Warp: Long Live the Computerized Bulletin Board System

Posted by Kate Johanns on Feb 17, 2017 12:00:00 PM

What did you do on your last snow day? Watch Netflix in your pajamas? Next time the weather is bad, remember Ward Christensen and Randy Suess, who spent the Great Blizzard of 1978 developing plans for the first Computerized Bulletin Board System (known as a CBBS, or, more commonly, as a BBS). Christensen and Suess launched their creation on Feb. 16, 1978, using a computer, a modem, and a phone line.

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Topics: Tech Time Warp

Cloud 5: Benioff's good decision, great data center consolidation

Posted by Ron Miller on Feb 17, 2017 9:57:25 AM

Welcome to The Cloud 5, our weekly feature where we scour the web searching for the five most intriguing and poignant cloud links we can find.

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Topics: The Cloud 5

If data is the new oil, here's how MSPs can seize the opportunity

Posted by Mike Vizard on Feb 16, 2017 1:49:12 PM

They say data is the new oil. But just like oil, data is worth much more when it’s refined than when it's in its raw state. In fact, raw data isn’t all that valuable. It’s only when that data is correlated against other data that valuable insights gets created. The challenge IT organizations face is they need to move data from one place to another to refine it and get those types of insights. 

The IT industry is on the cusp of a unique moment in time when many organizations have come to understand the potential value of their data. The trouble is most of them have limited ability when it comes to turning their data into actionable intelligence.

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Topics: IT Services Trends

Amazon makes SaaS-y move with new Chime communications tool

Posted by Ron Miller on Feb 16, 2017 9:35:18 AM

Amazon Web Services is a highly successful cloud company, but that doesn't mean it's simply content to rest on its success. It's continually looking for new areas to exploit. Just this week, it announced Chime, which has been billed as a unified communication tool.

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Topics: Cloud Trends

5 Critical behaviors of successful managed IT services companies

Posted by Stuart Crawford on Feb 15, 2017 4:43:32 PM

Yes, it’s true. There are managed IT services companies out there that understand the critical importance marketing and sales play in the success of their business. Regardless of their size, these IT service companies have transitioned from being a technology-focused company to having only one important focus ... do you know that this can be?

They are a marketing and sales organization.

That’s it. Nothing is more important than marketing their business every day and conducting wave after wave of sales operations. Yes, these very successful managed IT service companies are conducting a well thought-out, military-like marketing and sales strategy.

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Why do so many MSPs continue to ignore the importance of marketing and sales when time after time it’s been proven that conducting marketing and sales operations with precision will ensure your managed service business grows and grows and grows?

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Topics: MSP Marketing

2 MSP resolutions and how to keep them

Posted by Lindsay Faria on Feb 15, 2017 9:30:00 AM

It’s hard to believe we’re already well into the second month of 2017. According to the Statistic Brain Research Institute, more than 40 percent of people who made New Year’s Resolutions have given them up by now. So if you’re one of the committed ones — congratulations!

A few weeks ago, I was chatting with some of our Partners to learn more about what their resolutions for 2017 were (both professionally and personally), and I was surprised at how clearly a couple of trends defined themselves. Literally 100 percent of the ‘personal’ resolutions had to do with personal health and fitness. Awesome! And, there were trends just as clearly defined when it came to our Partners’ professional goals. Apparently, MSPs are heavily invested in two key areas in 2017:

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Topics: Growing Your MSP Business

Growing IT security fatigue bodes well for MSSPs

Posted by Mike Vizard on Feb 14, 2017 2:23:35 PM

The size of the opportunity for managed security service providers (MSSPs) has always been constrained by one dominant factor. Far too many IT organizations believe they can adequately defend their organizations despite all evidence to the contrary.

But, a new report from the Information Systems Audit and Control Association (ISACA), which counts more than 140,000 security and IT professionals among its members, suggests large amounts of “security fatigue” are starting to take a toll on internal IT organizations.

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Topics: Cyber Security

Robin Robins: How do I monetize thee? Let me count the ways …

Posted by Robin Robins on Feb 13, 2017 12:18:57 PM

My friend Michael Attias runs a catering-software business that helps restaurant owners generate a significantly higher profit margin in their business by selling catering. The other day he was explaining a new done-for-you online marketing service he was about to launch that would drive new catering business to the restaurant, but that many restaurateurs would consider “pricey.” 

He argued (backed up with logic and reasonable business math) that while the first order may be break-even, they could easily make that back from the repeat purchases made over time — and therein lies the hair in the proverbial butter with his argument. MOST restaurateurs don’t track sales metrics like this and don’t have a CLUE what the average client is worth, how often they repeat purchase, what their referral activity is (or isn’t). Because of that, I predict he’s going to have a TOUGH time selling this service, even if he can logically demonstrate the long-term ROI.

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Topics: Growing Your MSP Business

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