My guest on the podcast today is Doug Hazelman, the VP of technical marketing at CloudBerry. Doug has spent more than 20 years in the software industry—perhaps most notably he was an early employee of Veeam and helped grow that company to become the industry heavyweight it is now.
Doug and I are going to be talking about building a personal brand, a brand around you as an MSP owner or leader, why you would want to do that, and how to get started.
What’s Going On
[02:24] On Episode 21 of Frankly MSP, we talked about an experiment to test whether devices like Amazon Echo and Google Home listen to us between commands.
[02:55] We mentioned a few keywords and wanted people to report if they saw advertisements for these things afterwards.
[03:25] A listener commented on Episode 21 that he was having a conversation about cleaning the gutter and then began getting ads for gutter covers.
[04:25] Listener Andy also mentions he was talking about Zip drives and then started seeing advertisements on Amazon about Zip drives.
[05:12] Richard believes the ads were always there, but he just didn’t notice them before.
[05:18] Karl thinks some of the devices are listening to us and looking for keywords and filtering metadata.
[06:03] Karl came home from the CompTIA event with a gadget that disables microphones through the external port, so no one can activate it without you knowing about it.
[07:18] The first story we’re talking about is that Cisco Systems has acquired Duo Security for a staggering sum of $2.35 billion.
[07:38] Duo Security is a two-factor authentication company.
[09:07] Duo’s channel business grew 600% in 2017. This is due in large part to companies doubling down on their work with managed service providers and security solution providers.
[09:28] MSPs really need to be looking at two-factor authentication.
[09:39] Security is a way for MSPs to add revenue. It’s a service area filled with opportunities, and every single client needs it.
[10:19] There’s a interesting article about how states are adopting more and more data protection laws, essentially in response to GDPR.
[10:42] Data protection is huge. Privacy is back.
[11:16] Many states are now requiring data protections for client data.
[11:47] Whenever there is a breach of HIPAA, it’s an opportunity for someone to start opening accounts in your name.
[11:59] This is another opportunity for MSPs to help their clients with personal data protection.
Interview with Doug Hazelman – The How and Why of Building a Personal Brand
[15:02] Doug feels an MSP leader should build a personal brand rather than a brand around their company. People need to know who you are.
[15:41] You can elevate yourself and your brand by becoming a subject matter expert.
[15:54] Branding yourself can help you acquire customers.
[16:18] You can author content, including content for vendors. Vendors are always looking for good content to publish.
[18:01] The easiest way to get started is to blog. The hardest part is doing it consistently. You also want to promote your content on social media.
[18:55] The idea is to create the content, then get the word out about it.
[19:33] Strike a balance when spending time on writing and social promotion. Find ways to save time, such as using a voice recorder for your ideas and posts.
[20:20] Having success stories and industry respect will show your clients you’re good at what you do.
[20:58] Good content can also help you rank organically with search engines.
[21:32] You’ll get out what you put into the process.
[23:02] There’s a lot to be said for getting to know your MSPs peers. Especially, when it comes to collaborations or just bouncing ideas off of each other.
[23:24] When building a personal brand use the same handle across all of the different outlets.
[24:04] YouTube videos with great information is an example of making yourself a go-to expert. It could be a podcast or other medium too.
[26:32] Find your passion. Talk about a topic you know really well.
[27:37] Giving up too quickly is the number one pitfall people experience when building a brand. It takes time to build up a reputation and get interaction. Keep at it.
[28:36] Get out there. It’s fine to lurk at first. See what’s going on—but then join the conversation.
Links from this episode
What’s Going On
- What’s the Deal With Digital Transformation – FMSP 021
- Cisco Systems Acquires Duo Security for $2.35 Billion
- US States Pass Data Protection Laws on the Heels of The GDPR
- NCSL Data Security Law Private Sector
- Karl Palachuk: Small Biz Thoughts
- Karl Palachuk (Twitter)
- Richard Tubb: Tubblog
- Richard Tubb (Twitter)
- Tom Lawrence, Lawrence Systems on YouTube
- MSP subreddit
- Doug Hazelman (LinkedIn)
- Doug Hazelman (Twitter)
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