How Bryan Fuller Is Competing (And WINNING) Against Super MSPs 10x His Size

As a local, independently owned MSP with just 35 employees, Contigo Technology is competing and winning against regional and national firms with 300 to 400 employees. MSP Success recently sat down with CEO Bryan Fuller to discover how his company accomplishes 20% YOY growth.

What Are The Top Business Indicators You Use To Measure Your Company And Why?

Not losing clients is paramount. I always want to know what the client is thinking of our service. I want to be the most well-regarded MSP. I want to know that my clients like us and find value in us. I know that is subjective, and not metrics, but the subjective stuff we pay attention to is what makes us good.

Client success managers are extremely invested in client relationships. We do quarterly business reviews (QBRs) and strategic initiatives and go out and see people.

More than anything, the clients want to see that we’re making service better year after year. To accomplish that, we work to make sure our employees don’t leave. A nice work environment, vacation time and focusing on continually growing the company so employees have opportunities to advance in their careers helps us keep employees.

Using CrewHu, [we have] monitors in the office display what clients are saying about every ticket Contigo closes. It gives us a good idea of how we are doing and gauges what our clients are saying. Plus it allows us to reward our employees. Everything we do is aimed at making sure they are happy. When we do that, everything else falls into place.

As A Regional MSP, How Do You Compete In Today’s Mergers And Acquisitions Landscape And Against The MSP Behemoths Out There?

Promote the advantages of being a local. Local MSPs can benefit from the aftermath of an M&A buyout when clients realize they’re not getting the same service as before. There is a healthy appetite for working with somebody locally that will never be automated. Business owners could care less how shiny your name is. They want to know when they call that a real person is picking up the phone and when they need help, somebody is coming out. As threatening as all that stuff is, we’ve experienced a tremendous amount of growth dealing with the fallout of M&A activity. Within the past four or five years, two or three of our bigger competitors were purchased. It took about a year before the clients realized it wasn’t the same as what they had before and started looking for someone local.

Business owners could care less how shiny your name is. They want to know when they call that a real person is picking up the phone and when they need help, somebody is coming out.

CEO Bryan Fuller

Work in an office instead of remotely. There’s so much tribal knowledge that gets passed around in this business that it is important for everybody to be in the office. The big regional and national companies work remotely and can’t get anybody out on-site. We’re doing well by going out to see people and bringing potential clients into our office because all our competitors are working remotely.

Grow your MSP from every angle. Regional MSPs can successfully compete against larger M&A companies and huge MSPs but need to go beyond the 10-person IT shop. You must have robust processes, good IT and client success managers. Also, be in the mix when somebody is looking for you by having good SEO, PPC, cold callers, outside sales personnel and an internal marketing person.

Create an advantage with your culture. We take on everything and give it our best effort. When you look at the bigger companies and the investments that come into it and the need to generate profits, we’re willing to sacrifice some of that profit to make sure that the relationship stays intact. Through that kind of effort, we always try to satisfy the clients, regardless of what the request is. We’re very fluid, not rigid, and that’s woven into our culture. We aim to introduce Southern hospitality into our approach and helping people.

How Do You Keep Your Company Culture As You Grow?

To get a better sense of what’s going on, I no longer sit in my corner office. I sit out here in the cubicles. You don’t ever want to get too comfortable. You don’t want to get too far away from the action. CEOs that only deal with a few people don’t keep the culture together. As you keep getting bigger and spreading out, you want to keep the DNA of your company in sync with how it was in the beginning.

What Is Your Single Secret To Success This Past Year?

Responding to every single RFP. We had a breakout year and won RFPs by putting salespeople in a position to actively pursue them and do it extremely well.

You’ve Seen A Lot Of Growth By Introducing Compliance To Every Client, Including Clients Without Compliance Requirements. How Did You Accomplish This?

I started by building almost every one of Kaseya’s products into our company.

We hired a full-time compliance manager and use Kaseya’s Compliance Manager to establish a baseline of health for all our clients so that they know whether their compliance is up to a nine or down at a zero.

We have our own compliance standards that we breathe into every client. This gives us a static starting point in our QBR conversations. Our philosophy is cybersecurity as well as efficiencies, so when we’re making recommendations, it’s coming from this baseline of compliancy-driven ideas. That’s worked really well.

Most of our clients are CEOs who hear stuff but don’t know the inner workings of it. Using Kaseya’s Compliance Manager, we can show them that these aren’t just our policies but that these recommendations and why they should follow them are all being brought by a higher power, such as HIPAA or NIST. Clients appreciate that and that they are getting ahead of it. Plus, when I have Tom, Dick and Harry calling on my clients to try to take business away, it shows there is so much more we’re doing above and beyond just supporting tickets.

MSP Success Magazine is a print and digital publication dedicated to helping the CEOs and owners of managed IT services businesses build strong, profitable, growth-oriented businesses. Written and published by Robin Robins, founder of Technology Marketing Toolkit, this magazine is uniquely focused on the topics of marketing, client-acquisition, sales, profitability, leadership and personal development.



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