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Reevaluating the Timing and Costs of Developing Channel Relationships

March 15, 2011 at 2:05 pm PST

This post is a first in a series we’ll be featuring from Beth Vanni, Vice President of Amazon Consulting. Amazon Consulting is a partnering services firm dedicated to helping companies elevate the impact of partnering. Beth has over 25 years of experience in technology sales and marketing, with a specialty focus on partnering strategies and supporting operational plans.

A ‘perfect storm’ brewing around the issue of channel development

A variety of economic and industry innovation conditions are currently combining to create the “perfect storm” of channel development issues between IT vendors and their channel partners.  These include:

- A rash of disruptive technologies entering the market

- A slowly rebounding economy within a still-uncertain global environment

- Continued industry consolidation among vendors and solution providers

These market conditions are complicating the way in which technology vendors and solution providers engage to grow their mutual success.  If vendors are not prepared to meet these conditions with clearly defined partner value propositions, a clear coverage and capacity plan and comprehensive onboarding processes for their channel partners, their indirect revenues will likely suffer (and are).  Conversely, if solution providers aren’t prepared to intelligently navigate the vast array of vendor’s sales, technical, marketing and services programs and support materials, they won’t realize the rate of return they desire and will waste precious resources during the process.

In recent exclusive channel research entitled conducted by Amazon Consulting entitled “From Rookie to Rock Star:  The Cost and Timing of Developing Channel Partnerships,” we explored the relationship between vendors and channel partners along this issue of the costs and timing of developing a new partnership. 

The highlights from this research that we think are relevant to Cisco solution providers include the following:

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Fast Track 2 Update Delivers Faster Pricing, Inventory Info for Partners

You may have read about Fast Track 2 when I first blogged about ways this new program will help simplify sales transactions, reduce pricing on key product families, and accelerate Cisco partner rewards and incentives.

As of today, there is now a Fast Track 2 Pricing Catalog that includes the AIRxx Product Family, in addition to product SKUs from switches, routers, and wireless families. This new addition will help partners view the Cisco Suggested Reseller Price, inventory availability by distributor, help you close deals faster and drive incremental demand for Cisco solutions.

The Pricing Catalog will be live for Registered and Certified Partners in the United States, Canada, Mexico, and European markets starting today. Download the Pricing Catalog on Partner Central.

Other key details and resources for Fast Track 2 include: Read More »

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Partners Reflect on Partner Summit 2011, Plus Our Favorite Quotes

Last week our partners got to hear from great speakers, whether at the general sessions, theater breakout sessions, or business and leadership breakout sessions. But what impact did it all have—what did partners learn while they were at Partner Summit 2011?

Luckily, we got the chance to catch up with a number of you to find out what made an impact, and what you intended to take back to your business. I interviewed partners from a number of different companies, including: Long View, Comstor, Dimension Data, Migesa, Italtel, and Datacraft.

So what did partners tell us? The messages around cloud and collaborative professional services definitely were critical. One partner also noted the importance of Cisco’s commitment to the partner-led strategy.

While at Partner Summit, we also jotted down some notable quotes we heard over the course of the week, whether at the general sessions, or during breakout sessions. Here’s what we captured.

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Executives Share Top Takeaways from Partner Summit 2011

March 9, 2011 at 2:55 pm PST

My feet got a workout in New Orleans last week—in between running to the keynote sessions, helping out with the Executive Chats on Ustream, and working on our Partner Update news broadcasts, I managed to catch up with Senior Vice President Edison Peres, CTO Padmasree Warrior, Executive VP Rob Lloyd, and Senior Vice President Keith Goodwin.

Each of them filled me in on what the key takeaways were from their presentations during the General Sessions. Here’s what they had to say.

What did they share? Read More »

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The Week in Review: Cisco Partner Summit 2011

March 7, 2011 at 3:59 pm PST

There was no shortage of entertainment and music at Cisco’s 15th Partner Summit last week, with New Orleans’ finest bands and musicians playing for live and virtual audiences.

The action-packed event featured big news for partners, keynotes from Cisco’s top executives, breakout speakers, magicians, theater sessions, parties, a live auction, and generous donations from partners and Cisco are helping to rebuild homes and lives in New Orleans.

We put together a short video slideshow with pictures highlighting so many of the great moments from Cisco Partner Summit 2011. Enjoy! (And please share your own photos on our Facebook page.)

If you missed any of the news from last week, here are all of the big announcements for partners. Read More »

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