by Dede Haas & The ASCII Group
Getting the take – and maybe a little advice – from members of The ASCII Group on what solution providers are thinking and doing on a range of important channel topics.
Maximize The Value Of Partner Programs
Source: Channel Executive Magazine
By Dede Haas, CA-AM, Channel Sales Strategist, DLH Services, LLC
Award-winning, high-tech sales professional and founder of DLH Services, LLC (www.DLHServices.com), Dede Haas creates channel sales solutions for vendors and their channel partners. Here, Haas explores cyber defense with two members of The ASCII Group, a 1,300-member organization of North American VARs, solutions providers, and MSPs offering services to help its members grow their businesses.
is CEO of GlobalMacIT (www.globalmacit.com/),
a national MSP providing services to Mac-based
law firms. Tom is the author of Hassle Free Mac
IT Support for Law Firms and Legal Boost:
Big Profits Through an IT Transformation.
is CEO of Noverus Innovations, Inc. (www.noverus.com), the parent company to Noverus Infinity, an MSP based in Roseville, CA. Noverus offers a suite of services including managed IT, cloud computing, VoIP solutions, hosting, graphic design, and web development.
QUESTION 1: Does membership in big company channel programs help partners establish credibility?
LAMBOTTE: If you go into a channel relationship with a specific strategy and a long-term picture of the value it can add, then it can play a significant role in establishing credibility. Take, for example, when we worked closely with Apple retail stores as members of the Apple Consultants Network several years ago. Being referred by the Apple Business team was seen by prospects as a direct endorsement by Apple itself, which made the prospects much more predisposed to working with us.
MONK: We do find that with the big companies’ channel programs we get a higher level of credibility with customers when we can reference our partnership. When we start talking about Office 365 and the various programs Microsoft offers, for instance, customers immediately have a comfort level that we are capable of taking care of their needs because of our partnership status.
QUESTION 2: Do these channel partner programs contribute to winning new deals?
LAMBOTTE: Absolutely. If you want a channel partner program to help you win new deals, you have to put energy into developing the relationship. For example, I publish a lot of content and promote information and solutions of key channel partners that I believe in. In promoting their products, I create strategic by-products of them buying into our value as a member of their program. Once you rise above the rest, they can start promoting you to their clientele.
MONK: We are a part of some, such as Microsoft, that often affect the value of deals and winning new deals. There are other programs that, historically, haven’t helped in winning new deals — typically those that are really focused on their larger partners. For smaller partners, getting money from them, references, or leads almost never comes down the food chain. However, just because a company is big doesn’t mean we won’t ever benefit at our level because, as with Microsoft, it can be quite the opposite.
About The ASCII Group, Inc.
The ASCII Group is a vibrant reseller community of independent MSPs, VARs, and other solution providers. Formed in 1984, ASCII has more than 70 programs that provide turnkey cost-cutting strategies, innovative business building programs, and extensive peer interaction. ASCII members enjoy benefits such as marketing support; educational information; group purchasing power; increased leverage in the marketplace; and multiple networking opportunities. These programs enable ASCII members to increase revenue, lower operating costs, and grow service opportunities. ASCII is the oldest and largest group of independent information technology (IT) solution providers, integrators and value added resellers (VARs) in the world. Learn more at www.ascii.com.