MSPAA, Tech News

The highs of the MSPExpo in Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Author: MSPAA

The Managed Service Providers Association of America attended the MSP expo in Fort Lauderdale, Florida on February 13-15. Right from the time we landed gears kicked into “go mode”, planning and communicating with several attendees MSPs, and vendors.

Our event started on a Tuesday at 10 AM with Dave Jooste and Charlene Ignacio moderating some panels for MSPs. With an early morning start, the rooms were filled with inquisitive tech providers looking for answers solutions, and ideas. Charlene was instrumental in getting companies to find MSPs through the iPad that had a national map of MSPs available, where Dave approached his panels with tough questions aimed at the speakers. After one of the sessions an attendee said “This is the best panel discussion he has ever attended, the questions and answers were direct and targeted at topics that few are willing to speak about.”

After Tuesday’s discussions, the MSPAA had an open booth in MSP row for vendors, attendees, and MSPs to utilize the resources at their disposal. The MSPs that we spoke to made valuable connections with some of the partners that had joined us, including attending a special evening dinner that was held at Fogo de Chão Brazilian restaurant. We were fully booked with reservations and unfortunately, we had a line of MSPs that wanted to join us for dinner. One of the highlights of the MSP dinner was our introductions where we discovered we had MSPs attending from as far as South Africa, Italy, and Venezuela. Some of the stories of these MSPs were far different from what we as American MSPs experience.

The following morning started with an early rush for coffee and more panel discussions. The word of the MSPAA’s presence had spread amongst tech providers and we started getting a lot of interest from companies wanting to connect with MSPs. The expo hall opened around noon on Wednesday with an excited hype of attendees exploring solutions and exhibitor products as they poured in wave upon wave. Some of the MSPAA members who were present came and spoke to us, and with the added benefit of having our MSP trainer partner join us in the booth, they were able to do some complimentary on-the-spot training. One MSP walked away, saying “he had no idea that he was able to change his pricing to his benefit!”

Wednesday came with a full list of events and live interviews that we completed with many vendors, especially a world-famous hacker who had never shared his story before. Above the camera and lights, we could see a line of attendees, watching and listening to his story as he described how he was arrested by the FBI and became a government resource. Almost like we see in the movies!

Our CMO, Charlene, was running around the expo floor connecting with MSPs, vendors, and companies giving her valuable marketing input. It turns out even some of the bigger companies struggle with marketing efforts. It was then that we realized how MSP members could use some insight from another MSP member who has managed to pull off the growth struggle. We interviewed Val King from Whitehat Virtual Technologies and learned how his MSP company managed to exceed $1 million in a year. If you are an MSP and struggling with this, watch his story.

Later that evening, we gathered with some other MSPs and partners over another special dinner and enjoyed the company of friends, laughter, and possibilities. You can find some pictures in our gallery.

As Thursday arrived, we could see people starting to wind down from the high of the previous two days. People started becoming more relaxed and casual in their conversations as they entertained more natural and personable discussions. At the MSPAA booth, we had several MSPs join us and talk tech simply because we wanted to, not because we had to! One of the highlights at the close of the expo was a very special interview with Doug Green from TR Reseller. As we said, in the interview, this is a man who gives his all and wants to give the public community content and resources to read and use. All this content is freely available on their website. During this interview, we had an MSP, who is not a member of the MSPAA watching and we felt it important to connect him with Doug during the live feed. We learned later that they are now working together to help that MSP! As we said in the interview it’s all about community, supporting MSPs, technology, and for the greater good.

See you next year MSPExpo

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