Have you somehow magically ended up with an hour on your hands that you don’t know what to do with? That doesn’t happen to me very often, but sometimes a meeting gets cancelled or a flight gets delayed and you have an hour —or maybe even two hours —that you now have earmarked for nothing. You’re reading this, so you must have at least a little free time on your hands today.
If you are wondering whether you should spend that newly found free time drinking coffee at Starbucks or chatting on Facebook or just catching up on email … stop right there! I’m going to help you turn that spare hour into more MRR. Here are five things you can do with your spare hour to grow your managed services business:
1. Call five people you haven’t talked to in forever
It’s kind of a jerk move to call people you haven’t bothered talking to in years to ask them for referrals. So call those people right now, just to say hello. Ask them how they are, how their families are, and how work is going. Ask them if they’d like to grab a cup of coffee the week after next to catch up. Calendar a 30-minute meeting and get reacquainted. Eventually, you can ask your old contacts for referrals and introductions and maybe even invite them to a social event you’re hosting where they could bring a guest or two you’d like to meet. But today, just reach out. Your network works for you only when you’re working it.
2. Go meet your neighbors
Are you in a large office building? An industrial park? Go for a walk with a handful of brochures and business cards. Wander into other offices. Say hello to everyone you meet. Ask them how many computers they have there. Then, if their answer is more than the magic number (hint: 20 or higher), ask who you would talk to about bringing in coffee and donuts and hosting a small overview and Q&A session on cyber security or cloud backup or another tech topic they might be interested in.
3. Stalk your exes on the Internet
No, not that girl you met at that party 10 years ago. That’s just creepy. (She’s married now, has four kids, and lives in North Dakota. Move on.) I’m talking about ex-employers and ex-coworkers. Before you owned an IT company, you worked for someone or worked with someone that you’re not in contact with anymore. What are they doing now? Find them on LinkedIn and connect with them. As your LinkedIn connection base grows, you’ll be able to reach out to more new contacts.
4. Check in on your clients
Sometimes, as business owners, we get a little too removed from our customers. Want to preserve and grow the MRR you already have? Stay connected with your client base. Maybe it’s been years since it was “your job” to fix something or sell something, but it never hurts to let your clients know you appreciate them.
5. Go to the gym
Technically, this one isn’t free, but if you’re already paying your club dues, it’s practically free. Are you a member of a fitness club in your city? Engaging with your fellow members will lead to referrals—people bond quickly over shared interests and activities. Join a league, learn a new sport, and meet some new people. Not only will you have even more opportunities to network, you’ll keep yourself healthy so you can continue to enjoy all the success that will come from using your found hours wisely!
Carrie Simpson is the founder of Managed Sales Pros, a lead generation firm dedicated to providing new business opportunities for MSPs. Carrie teaches IT firms how to build, manage, and grow their sales pipelines. You can follow Carrie on Twitter @sales_pros and connect with her on LinkedIn.