ChannelLife Australia logo
Industry insider news for Australia's technology resellers
Story image

Channeling success: Helping you and your partners derive the most from your partnership

Tue 7 Jun 2016
FYI, this story is more than a year old

It’s been a week filled with channel-related questions from clients and provider announcements. Perhaps because it’s spring and love is in the air, providers thinking “channel” and “ecosystem” and hopping into action.

Today’s Cisco/IBM/Bell Canada partnership announcement provides me with a data point (and a reason – I was LOOKING for a blog topic) for discussion about some critical elements to remember when creating (theoretically) strategic partnerships.

First, the announcement, which was fully buzzword compliant (the following is from PR Newswire – so it’s right out of the horses’ mouths): “IBM and Cisco Combine the Power of Watson Internet of Things with Edge Analytics.”

Somehow, Bell Canada, which is actually the delivery partner in the mix, drew the short straw with respect to the title, but happily its capabilities and value were described later in the announcement.

But this blog isn’t about criticism of this particular announcement; it seeks to offer advice on how to ensure you and your partners derive the most from your partnerships. So what are a few things that come to mind when reading an announcement like this?

  1. Explain why 1+1=3: What’s the value inherent in the partnership? Why is the power of two together better than approaching each individually? In this case, as an example, one would assume that IBM, Cisco (and Bell Canada) are pre-integrating and testing their capabilities in cognitive and edge analytics, data transport and cloud to create solutions that would otherwise cost an arm and a leg to stitch together. Make sure that your partnerships easily demonstrate added value to clients and address specific pain points.  
  2. Create metrics and/or KPIs among the partners to ensure activity, interest and (hopefully) results: a partnership without pre-established goals is little more than an announcement (back in the day, we’d call these “Barney announcements” as partners simply professed love for one another with no additional substance provided). Particularly for those partnerships that desire or demand marketing and sales support on either or both sides, metrics that are minded and reported regularly are critical.  
  3. Don’t just collaborate on marketing; collaborate on enablement: channel marketers among partners may well collaborate on materials to provide to prospects, but ensuring that the appropriate roles – mostly the sellers – on all sides actually understand the mission, offerings, go to market plans, pricing, customers/roles/personas to target, competition, etc. will be key to success. Whether through webinars, videos, presentations at kickoffs or all of the above, create an enablement plan for all those involved with customer interaction. Plan also to refresh this at regular intervals, particularly when there are new releases, customer wins, etc. worth addressing.  
  4. Figure out support plans: someone has to own the customer relationship, and while decisions about who would take level 2 and 3 support calls may well depend upon how offerings are licensed, there is typically a clear choice for the first level of support. Typically, whoever owns the (inter)face to the customer would be responsible for level 1 support since customers will often assume that provider “speaks” for all technology in the solution, but generally speaking, the provider of the platform providing primary value to the customer would take the lead. After that, ensure that the appropriate agreements and handoffs are created to ensure that if a problem lives in a partner component or integrated product, support can be provided and the customer kept whole.  
  5. Create an organised approach to customers: this basically means “make sure that all parties don’t attack the same customer without knowing each other is in there.” It could also mean that partners agree to split different types of customers, geographies, etc. depending upon what’s being offered and to whom. Ideally, the established partnership will result in an amalgam of experience and sales tactics that are additive and mesh well together. But making sure that boundaries, if needed, are created will save much angst down the road relative to territories and customer targeting.

Obviously, there’s more to be discussed and accomplished in a strategic partnership, but these five items hit the highlights of what occurred to me as I read today’s announcement and digested some of the discussions I’ve had with clients of late.

I will be anxious to see what the IBM/Cisco/Bell Atlantic partnership announcement yields in terms of integrated offerings or solutions and new customer wins. Hopefully, they’ve addressed the above to help those come to fruition. Article by David Yockelson, Gartner Research VP

Related stories
Top stories
Story image
GapMaps
GapMaps Live to improve brand decisions on physical locations
GapMaps has released its latest service GapMaps Live, giving more insights and features to help brands make better decisions about physical locations.
Story image
SpaceX
Australian space tech startup secures SpaceX support
Space Machines Company has secured the support of SpaceX as a launch partner in carrying SMC's Optimus Orbital Transfer Vehicle to space next year.
Story image
Sony
Sony launches LinkBuds S - the latest model in the series
Sony says the LinkBuds S will give users a unique sound experience through sensor and spatial sound technology, even in AR games.
Story image
Microsoft
Global cybersecurity insurance market worth $11.5b this year
Future Market Insights finds the cybersecurity insurance market is expected to reach USD$11.5 billion in 2022, growing to $61.2 billion in 10 years.
Story image
Artificial Intelligence
AI-based email security platform Abnormal Security valued at $4B
"A new breed of cybersecurity solutions that leverage AI is required to change the game and stop the rising threat of sophisticated and targeted email attacks."
Story image
Digital Transformation
Pluralsight and Ingram Micro Cloud team up on cloud initiative
Pluralsight has teamed with Ingram Micro Cloud to build upon cloud competence and maturity internally, and externally support partners’ capabilities.
Story image
ChildFund
ChildFund launches new campaign to protect children online
ChildFund says WEB Safe & Wise aims to protect children from sexual exploitation and abuse online while also empowering them to become digitally savvy. 
Story image
Apple
Apple previews new features for users with disabilities
Apple says new software features that offer users with disabilities new tools for navigation, health and communication, are set to come out later this year.
Story image
Application Performance Monitoring / APM
Why SolarWinds Partners will have big wins in 2022
We summarise the key recent changes that the monitoring software vendor has made to accelerate its channel business.
Story image
Fintech
Airwallex launches new bank feed integration with NetSuite
Airwallex has launched a new bank feed integration with NetSuite, developed in partnership with NetSuite solution partner, Onlineone.
Story image
Microsoft
New Relic enters multi-year partnership with Microsoft Azure
New Relic has announced a strategic partnership with Microsoft to help enterprises accelerate cloud migration and multi-cloud initiatives. 
Story image
Wireless
Cradlepoint expands its Cellular Intelligence capabilities
Cradlepoint has announced additional Cellular Intelligence capabilities with its NetCloud service.
Story image
Lightspeed
Lightspeed launches all-in-one marketing platform in A/NZ
ECommerce provider, Lightspeed has launched a new all-in-one marketing solution, Lightspeed Marketing & Loyalty in Australia and New Zealand.
Story image
Cloud Security
Aqua Security createa unified scanner for cloud native security
“By integrating more cloud native scanning targets into Trivy, such as Kubernetes, we are simplifying cloud native security."
Story image
Vectra AI
Vectra’s inaugural Partner of the Year Awards revealed
APAC companies Baidam, Firmus, ShellSoft and Macnica have been recognised in Vectra AI's inaugural Partner of the Year Awards.
Story image
Remote Working
Australia’s remote workers face connectivity and security issues
SOTI's new report finds better video conferencing technology and improved security measures are top concerns for remote workers in Australia.
Story image
Data Protection
Barracuda launches new capabilities for API Protection
"Every business needs this type of critical protection against API vulnerabilities and automated bot attacks," Barracuda says.
Story image
Gaming
Hands-on review: WD_Black SN770 NVMe SSD Game Drive
Western Digital expands its WD_Black range of NVMe solid-state drives with the WD_Black SN770 Game Drive.
Story image
Cybersecurity
Noname Security partners with Netpoleon to target API issues
Specialist API security firm Noname Security has appointed Netpoleon as its distributor in Australia and New Zealand.
Story image
Artificial Intelligence
Frost & Sullivan recognises Genesys as leader in new reports
Frost & Sullivan has recognised Genesys as a leader in the cloud contact centre market for its robust cloud and digital capabilities.
Story image
Vectra AI
Understanding the weight on security leader’s shoulders, and how to shift it
Millions of dollars of government funding and internal budgets are being funnelled into cybersecurity to build resilience against sophisticated threats, indicating how serious this issue has become.
Story image
Silver Peak
The path to an adaptive, modern network
Managing and securing the network looks different than it did just two years ago—especially given that most of these networks are made up of multi-generations of infrastructure stitched together over time.
Story image
Gaming
PNY launches XLR8 Gaming EPIX memory products in A/NZ
PNY has launched its XLR8 Gaming EPIC-X RGB™ DDR4 Silver 3200MHz and 3600MHz memory products in Australia and New Zealand.
Story image
Broadband
Telstra enters into new RSP agreement with Opticomm
Telstra has entered into an RSP agreement with Opticomm (A Uniti Group Limited subsidiary) to provide network fibre services to customers.
Story image
Ransomware
A third of companies paying ransom don’t recover data - report
Veeam's report finds 76% of businesses who are victims of cyberattacks paid the ransom to recover data, but a third were still unable to get their information back.
Story image
Data solutions
South Australia state satellite makes significant progress
South Australia’s first state satellite has successfully completed the Critical Design Review (CDR), moving it closer to providing tangible data solutions.
Story image
Training
Delinea enhances partner experience with new training initiatives
Delinea has announced a range of training and certification initiatives to help scale the capacity of VARs, System Integrators, MSPs and MSSPs to meet the demand for PAM solutions.
Story image
Cybersecurity
BlackBerry offers Kaspersky replacement cybersecurity for the channel
BlackBerry advises that users of Kaspersky software in Australia and New Zealand undertake a rigorous risk analysis of their current security posture.
Story image
Digital Transformation
How to modernise legacy apps without compromising security
At a time when digital transformation has become central to business, even the most important applications come with a ‘use-by’ date.
Story image
Mobility
Tyson Beckford partners with Element Case on new AppleWatch band
Celebrity Tyson Beckford has collaborated with STM Brands' Element Case brand to create a rugged new accessory.
Story image
Amazon Web Services / AWS
RedShield leverages AWS to scale cybersecurity services
"Working with AWS gives RedShield the ability to mitigate significant application layer DDoS attacks, helping leaders adopt best practices and security architectures."
Story image
Manhattan Associates
Shortening the click-to-customer cycle through smart technologies
Speed of delivery without accuracy is a dealbreaker for consumers. How can retailers operating in an omnichannel environment overcome the challenge of click-to-customer cycle times.
Story image
Cybersecurity
Cybersecurity prompts upgrade for 1.3 billion electricity meters
ABI Research finds Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) and cybersecurity concerns are prompting the upgrade of 1.3 billion electricity meters by 2027.
Story image
Surveillance
Motorola Solutions acquires Videotec S.p.A for security portfolio
Motorola Solutions has acquired Italian ruggedised video security company Videotec S.p.A, along with its portfolio of highly versatile cameras.
Story image
Surveillance
i-PRO releases smallest AI-based surveillance camera on the market
The new i-PRO mini network camera is now available, with a pocket-sized form factor and full AI analytics functionality.
Story image
Getac
Getac and Optalert expand partnership to promote industrial safety
Getac’s ZX70 Android tablets will be used to support Optalert’s Eagle Industrial early-warning drowsiness detection system for use in mining and transportation.
Story image
Digital Signage
MAXHUB's Digital Signage range to bolster boardroom productivity
The new MAXHUB Digital Signage technology is purpose-built to make every kind of team meeting more effective.
Story image
Cybersecurity
Infoblox's State of Security Report spotlights Australian remote work hazards
Attackers exploit weak WiFi, remote endpoints, and the cloud, costing 50% of organisations over $1.3 million in breach damages.
Story image
Omnichannel
Lexmark launches A/NZ first with retail publishing solution
Lexmark, a global imaging and IoT solutions leader, launched its Publishing Platform for Retail (PPR) in Australia and New Zealand.
Story image
Sift
Sift shares crucial advice for preventing serious ATO breaches
Are you or your business struggling with Account Takeover Fraud (ATO)? One of the latest ebooks from Sift can provide readers with the tools and expertise to help launch them into the new era of account security.
Story image
trust
9/10 Aussies to stop spending if personal data compromised
"Based on the patterns we are seeing among Australian consumers, it is evident that trust in a brand is exceptionally important."
Story image
Nozomi Networks
Nozomi Networks, Siemens reveal software integration
Nozomi Networks and Siemens have extended their partnership by embedding Nozomi Networks’ software into the Siemens Scalance LPE local processing engine.
Story image
Wireless
Hands-on review: Technics EAH-A800 Noise Cancelling Wireless Headphones
Designed in Osaka, Japan, these headphones just exude quality. They aren’t heavy, but they feel well built and solid.
Story image
Sustainability
Legrand unveils Nexpand, a data center cabinet platform
Legrand has unveiled a new data center cabinet platform, Nexpand, to offer the necessary scalability and future-proof architecture for digital transformation.