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Kicking Off the Cisco Partner Summit Season

February 26, 2014 at 9:25 am PST


Cisco Partner Summit is quickly approaching.  For me, deeply embroiled in the planning for the big event, I am counting down the days until I get to meet and interact with many of you in person. I can’t wait to put some faces with names I’ve worked with already during the past several months.

While the start of the event, on March 24, is still just over the horizon, let’s kick off this year’s Partner Summit season by giving you some information to prepare for the event.

First, I realize not all of you will be at the event in Las Vegas in person. I mean, this is the first Partner Summit where I’ll be attending too, but I have taken advantage of Virtual Partner Summit (VPS) each of my previous years with Cisco. I encourage you to do the same. Registration for VPS is open now, so be sure to sign up. We don’t want you to miss any of the event! Read More »

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Congratulations to My Fellow Channel Chiefs for 2014

Each year, CRN announces its list of Channel Chiefs. This list constitutes a “who’s who” within the world of channel management. According to CRN, these folks head up the partner programs that you all depend on to run your businesses.

I am extremely honored to be one of the named Channel Chiefs this year, especially since Edison Peres and I were named to the 50 most influential list. However, I really wanted to take the time to point out my colleagues who were named this year. I can’t tell you how excited we are at Cisco to have six of our executives recognized by CRN.

Most importantly, I wanted to be sure that you all realize these types of honors are not earned in a vacuum. While I am thrilled that five Cisco executives were honored by CRN this year, this type of recognition is really a statement on our wonderful Cisco partners. With your input on our programs and insight into our business relationships, we have been able to put ourselves in a position where this type of recognition, while always welcome, is not necessarily surprising. And that is not me tooting the Cisco horn. That is a testament to the hard work and dedication of Cisco’s partners, which simply cannot go unrecognized. Read More »

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Cisco Partner Weekly Rewind – February 21, 2014

February 21, 2014 at 9:15 am PST

Partner-Weekly-Rewind-v2Each week, we’ll highlight the most important Cisco partner news and stories, as well as point you to important, Cisco-related partner content you may have missed along the way. Here’s what you might have missed this week:

Off the Top

Karen Walker recently spoke with Glenn Gow of Crimson Marketing for a podcast. She was kind enough to provide us a transcript of the interview, and we’re happy to share that with you.

Covering topics ranging from revenue generation marketing to social media, it is a fascinating conversation that should not be missed. Be sure to stop by and take a look at the insights from Karen and feel free to participate in the conversation via the comments section.

Partner Voices: CDW on Driving Solution Adoption

In case you missed my latest Partner Voices blog this week, I had the opportunity to speak with Yvonne LeNoue of CDW. In our discussion, she gave her perspective on driving solution adoption and it is well worth your time. Yvonne is a principal contact center consultant for CDW and she has more than 20 years of experience in the field.

She has some fantastic thoughts on driving solution adoption. Stop by and check out her five key takeaways. Read More »

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Partner Voices: CDW on Driving Solution Adoption across Your Practice

February 18, 2014 at 9:57 am PST

As part of our ongoing Partner Voices blog series, I recently had the opportunity to catch up with Yvonne LeNoue of CDW regarding her blog, “Top 5 Areas of Focus to Drive Solution Adoption across Your Contact Center Practice.” I invited her to expand a little more on those ideas for our Cisco partners and she kindly obliged.

Yvonne is a principal contact center consultant for CDW, and she has more than 20 years of experience in the contact center space. She has helped numerous organizations create and adopt solutions; her insights in this area are invaluable.

During our conversation, Yvonne emphasized that most technology implementations focus on a successful rollout of solutions, that is with  little-to-no customer impact, as customers seek a hefty return on investment based on the operational benefits that will be recognized through improved functionality and advanced technologies. The onus of success is typically placed on the technical teams of integrators and customers. Fortunately, in many cases, successful migrations are second nature. However, the thought of supporting the end users through the transition is rarely discussed.

Because so many organizations fail to engage the end users through their transitions, customers struggle to adopt new solutions and the business process enhancements that accompany new technologies. As you’ve likely experienced in your own businesses, organization leaders can experience frustration following technology implementations as employees revert to old processes and solutions. What’s more, lack of adoption can impact business value, and repeat sales and overall perception of project success. With this lack of adoption, Yvonne points out, no one wins; organizational operations remain stagnant, ROIs are not realized, vendors struggle to drive interest in future technologies and end users feel isolated. Simply delivering solutions and products does not ensure solution adoption and no longer guarantees customer satisfaction. Read More »

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Marketing Insights on Revenue Generation, Buying Patterns, and the Role of Social

Revenue-generating marketing, customer buying patterns, and social selling are a few of the topics I talked about recently with Glenn Gow of Crimson Marketing.  I’m pleased to share these excerpts from our conversation and invite you to listen to the podcast.

Glenn: Why don’t we start with this concept of revenue-generating marketing, and tell us a little bit about the journey that you’ve been going through. 

Karen:  I wanted marketing to be viewed as a revenue center versus a cost center, because then it becomes a very different discussion about the value, the role of marketing, and the investment that a company is willing to make.And frankly, in some cases, marketing should be seen as a cost-to-serve model in terms of where marketing can lead the generation of demand, particularly with customers in the mid-market and with our partners.

Glenn: Can you talk a little bit more about what revenue-generating marketing really means? Read More »

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