The VAR Guy sat down with Dan Edwards, CEO of Pact-One, to learn about some of his company's marketing best practices.

Michael Cusanelli, Associate Editor

December 8, 2014

3 Min Read
Dan Edwards CEO of PactOne
Dan Edwards, CEO of Pact-One

The VAR Guy understands how difficult it can be for many companies to establish a well-developed marketing program, so we decided to ask partners who do it well to share their own best practices for spreading brand awareness. This week, we spoke to Dan Edwards, the CEO of Pact-One, an IT managed services provider, project consultant and implementor to get his take on the dos and don’ts of marketing.

But first, a little background. Pact-One was established in 2003 and primarily serves customers in the Midwest, Western and Southwestern United States. The company is dedicated to helping customers to lower their operating costs, improve service levels and increase revenues.

TVG: What type and how much marketing does your company do in an average month?

Edwards: We do both inbound and outbound marketing, including campaigns, tracks, blogs, direct mailers, promo items, client and prospect informational emails and newsletters. In addition, when a tradeshow comes around, we also create campaigns for before, during and after the show to ensure that we get adequate coverage at the event. On average, we run roughly 3-4 campaigns a month. Depending upon the temperature of the lead (hot, warm, or cold) we put them on a specific track to receive targeted touches from us. So, for example, if we gain a lead from a dentistry event, we’d put it on a dental specific track so that they only get marketing touches that would relate directly to their business. This way, we can make our marketing more relevant to each user, based upon their preferences and business.

TVG: What has been the most successful method of marketing for your company?

Edwards: Email marketing has been the most successful method of marketing for Pact-One because it requires very little cost to us and it reaches out to prospects in a non-threatening or aggressive manner. Through valuable emails, we are more likely to build a reputation with our prospect base and they feel more confident in that fact that we can help them improve their business.

TVG: How do you measure the success of your marketing efforts?

Edwards: We measure our marketing success in the amounts of email opens, click-through rates and calls. Some might think it would be easier to measure the amount of appointments booked, but we understand that it takes a prospect multiple touches or interactions in order to feel fully comfortable in engaging directly with us. Rather than bombarding them with content, we choose to slowly drip information out to them so that they get the chance to know more about us and see the value in how we can help them solve their specific business challenges.

TVG: Do you have an in-house marketing program or do you outsource?

Edwards: We outsource our marketing efforts to CharTec, the leading provider of MSP business training. Over the years we’ve had a great working relationship with CharTec and when they approached us with their Elite Membership offering last year, we jumped at the opportunity to kick-start our marketing efforts with the experts. Since becoming an Elite Member, we’ve started to regulate our marketing so that our prospect and client base is not receiving sporadic communication from us, but rather gets the opportunity to engage with us consistently. CharTec has been great with helping us to build our brand identity and really position ourselves within the channel.

TVG: What advice would you have for VARs/solution providers that don’t have a regular marketing program in place?

Edwards: My advice would be to look into marketing automation. I think one of the biggest misconceptions that people have about marketing, especially in the MSP space, is that it requires a tremendous amount of time. In all actuality, successful marketing really only requires about 30 minutes of your time and with automation services, you can take a complex, multi-faceted approach, which really allows you the best opportunity to connect with leads on their preferred channel. Be it email, phone call, postcard, or lumpy mailer, there are tools out there to help you market your business, without sacrificing time in other areas of your business.

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About the Author(s)

Michael  Cusanelli

Associate Editor, Penton Technology Group, Channel

Michael Cusanelli is the associate editor for Penton Technology’s channel properties, including The VAR Guy, MSPmentor and Talkin' Cloud. He has written articles and produced video for and is a graduate of Stony Brook University's School of Journalism in New York. In his spare time Michael likes to play video games, watch sci-fi movies and participate in all things nerdy. He can be reached at [email protected]


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