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Best Kept Secrets of MSP Peer Groups

by | Apr 1, 2024

Best Kept Secrets of MSP Peer Groups

With the US MSP network comprising upwards of 40,000 businesses and worth a staggering $152 billion1, it’s safe to say there is a lot of competition within the channel, and yet, with so many businesses operating within the space, no one knows everything. That’s where MSP peer groups can be of immense value.

If you’re experiencing a problem, odds are, other MSPs are also in a similar position. IT MSP peer groups give you a unique opportunity to find solutions to channel-specific queries and take on challenges together. Despite their value, many MSPs shy away from the prospect of peer groups because of the assumption that they are occupied by competitors.

Any respectable peer group will not put you in a position where you’re directly mingling with your competitors; instead, you’ll be surrounded by MSPs that are similar in scale, but with different target markets and audiences. With this in mind, peer groups can be fundamental to helping you implement strategic changes that lend themselves to your success, as we discuss below.


What is an MSP Peer Group?

Before we dive into the benefits of attending an MSP peer group, let’s first define it.. A peer group for MSPs is a pay-to-play type gathering of industry professionals. Unlike networking groups, peer groups require a fee to join, but in return, you gain regular, in-depth contact and support from subject experts in similar positions to yourself.

Depending on the type of peer group you join, you will liaise with MSPs of a similar size and standing to yourself. You can discuss everything from the current state of the industry and success metrics to specific challenges you’re facing and potential networking opportunities that can benefit your business in the long-term.


Why Go to an MSP Peer Group?

Given that peer groups are a paid-for event, it’s understandable that you’ll want to make sure it’s worth the money. If you’re an MSP thinking about attending a peer group and wondering if doing so could be fruitful for you, here are five of the best kept secrets you stand to gain by attending.

1. Get new ideas

The pace at which the IT and tech channels evolve is like no other; there’s always something new on the horizon – be it data compliance rules that affect how you handle your client’s data, or a piece of software that could be transformative for your clients. Despite the consistent flow of change, knowing how best to adapt to it or how to leverage it in your favor can be difficult.

Attending an MSP peer group means you can brainstorm with other MSPs and get a fresh perspective on what’s happening. Whether you have a new idea in the pipeline and want to get feedback on the pros and cons to decide if it’s viable, or if you want to hear how your peers might go about solving a particular issue (or, if they’ve overcome something similar and the results of their approach), peer groups are the ideal environment to bounce fresh ideas around and get real-time feedback from those who know the channel best.

2. Gain an understanding of your competitors’ current standing

MSP peer groups are all about fostering honesty and openness. They’re touted as a safe space for channel professionals to share their highs and lows, and while it might seem daunting for you to be honest about your recent failures (if applicable), you can use this in your favor. No one expects you to drill down into the nitty gritty of your finances or client relations, but by sharing something you’ve tried that didn’t quite work out, others can learn from your mistakes or offer insights as to why you got the results you did.

Vice versa, when other MSPs are open about their wins and failures, you can make sure you don’t make the same potentially costly errors and avoid following in their footsteps. Think of it as a designated IDS (identify, discuss, solve) session amongst colleagues who have already been there.

3. Stay accountable to your own goals

It can be hard to maintain accountability to yourself, but IT MSP peer groups can help you do just that. By voicing your goals and objectives and roadmapping them in front of other industry professionals, you may find it easier to stay on the right track and hit your targets.

What’s more, your peers might have suggestions on how you can achieve your goals faster and help you streamline your approach to avoid missteps. Whilst they’re your competitors, they can also be your supporters. The aim of peer groups is to provide support and encouragement, and voicing your objectives can foster this type of environment and relationship within the channel.

If nothing else, you can revel in the positivity that comes with announcing any successes or wins you’ve had along the way and seeing how your hard work and initiatives are received within the channel.

4. Network with precision

As the age-old saying goes, it’s not what you know, it’s who you know. Networking is the key to success, and attending an MSP peer group is a great way to develop new connections. Of course, peer groups aren’t free, but the potential gains from nurturing the right type of connections could prove to be invaluable.

For example, if you’re a new or smaller MSP looking to expand, you might be able to liaise with a larger-scale MSP at a peer group that can provide you with contact details of clients that they can’t (or don’t want to) onboard due to their size. Such an instance could be gold for your portfolio.

5. Gain high-level support

Aside from the business gains you can reap from attending MSP peer groups, you can also make personal payoffs, too. No one is under any illusion that running a business is easy, especially not in an industry as complex and fast-paced as IT. From constantly investing in your own skills development to dealing with the ins-and-outs of managing a team, there’s a lot of pressure on your shoulders, and it can be hard to find people who can offer support grounded in tangible experience.

Because IT MSP peer groups comprise like-for-like professional counterparts, you’re surrounded by people who are experiencing the very same headaches and struggles as you. Whether you’re looking for advice about navigating economic downturns and client payment issues, or if you need support with hiring decisions or optimizing your operations, there’s no one better to turn to than those who are in the same position as you.

If nothing else, attending a peer group can help you deal with the mental and emotional aspects of heading up an MSP, and the benefits of that can allow you to clarify your focus and be better for your team and those around you.


Peer Groups at Marketopia

At Marketopia, we have years of experience in supporting MSPs in every aspect of their channel success. We are experts at connecting you with like-minded professionals through meticulously planned peer groups. We’ll never pair you with direct competitors; we will help you establish yourself within peer groups that are relevant and useful to you and your objectives.

To find out more about our MSP peer group services, or any of our other MSP marketing and IT lead generation services, please contact us.


MSP Peer Group FAQs


What is an MSP peer group?

An MSP peer group is a peer group composed exclusively of MSPs and professionals within the IT channel. They can take place either in person or online, and provide MSPs with an opportunity to meet with, discuss best practices, collaborate, share insights and network with like-minded peers within the same industry.

What are the benefits of joining an MSP peer group?

Joining an MSP peer group can be beneficial for several reasons, including for your personal and professional development. They provide opportunities to problem-solve, learn, grow your business, share ideas and overcome common problems within the channel.

How do MSP peer groups typically operate?

Peer groups can take place online or in person, and they typically follow an agenda. Sometimes there are presentations, table discussions and guest speakers from within the channel.

How can I find an MSP peer group to join?

You can find IT MSP peer groups online, but to avoid being in a peer group with direct competitors, it’s a good idea to enlist a service provider, like Marketopia, to facilitate finding you an appropriate peer group. Find out more about our peer group services here.

Do MSP peer groups require a financial commitment?

Yes, MSP peer groups typically involve paying a fee to cover the logistical overheads of the event, although some are free.

Are MSP peer groups competitive or collaborative?

Competition can be healthy, but the main focus of peer groups is on collaboration, idea sharing and growth.

Can joining an MSP peer group help me grow my business?

Yes, joining an MSP peer group can help you grow your business through networking, as well as through taking on board tips and tricks shared by other MSPs that can streamline your business.




1: https://www.mspresources.org/blog/how-many-msps-in-the-us-and-worldwide


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