Continuum Managed Services: Behind the Scenes
Continuum Managed Services has inked a deeper partnership with CMIT Solutions, and has launched marketing and lead generation initiatives to help MSPs engage more customers. At first glance, the initiatives look similar to so offerings from MSP industry companies. But take a closer look and you'll see that Continuum is using C-level meetings to build closer working relationships with its MSP community. Here's how.
First, the official news:
- CMIT Solutions, an MSP with more than 135 franchise members, has selected Continuum's software for its members. On the one hand the news isn't surprising since CMIT management praised Continuum's executive team during a conversation with MSPmentor about a year ago. Still, the CMIT relationship is critical since those franchise members ultimately manage thousands of end-customers and IP nodes.
- Separately, Continuum has launched Marketing Advantage, an inbound and outbound marketing program for its MSPs. Continuum claims the "turnkey" program will deliver 100 pre-qualified SMB leads through a range of landing pages, white papers, emails, e-books and more. I don't know if Continuum partnered up with a marketing service provider to build the program. But I do know this: CEO Michael George has been dropping hints about this effort since 2012, so I think it's been under development for quite some time. Mark Zahar, vice president, Channel Marketing and Community Development, is driving the effort for Continuum.
Now, the background chatter: Continuum already works closely with a Partner Advisory Council. George and the executive team meet face to face with the council regularly. And council members say Continuum spends most of its time listening and asking questions during the meetings — rather than evangelizing new services or making lofty promises during the gatherings. As one council member put it, "George's greatest strength is his ability to look you in the eye and really just listen."
Continuum is looking to build on that council model. The first council was designed for CXOs and business owners, I believe. A new council sounds like it's designed for MSP employees who deal with NOC services. The idea is to gather feedback that improves Continuum's own NOC (network operations center) services.
I heard chatter about the growing Continuum council effort from MSPs attending a recent CharTec event in California. The MSPs sounded impressed. We'll be listening closely for their reaction to Continuum's marketing services.
Plenty of lead generation companies are seeking to help MSPs. I'm wondering what Continuum's potential secret sauce is in this market…