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What Helps You Differentiate from the Competition?

Let’s face it: Providing quantifiable value and cost savings while convincing customers of their return on investment, can often make or break a deal. However, the advent of architecture-based solutions and the increasing need for consultative services are helping drive partners’ success and growth. But in the negotiation phase, how can partners think creatively to help provide analysis and assessments to customers?

As you look for new revenue opportunities, what helps propel you ahead of the pack and helps differentiate you from the competition?

Cisco Gold partner Presidio completed an RFP for Tyler Independent School District in Texas and was competing for the business with another solutions provider. What helped to win Tyler’s trust was the ROI analysis they shared with the district’s superintendent.

Tyler Independent School District has 18,000 students, but only had a 4:1 student to desktop ratio. Additionally, thousands of the district’s PCs were seven, eight, or nine years old – completely incapable of running Windows 7 or new applications. IT was struggling to keep up with management and maintenance issues, as well as security challenges. Additionally, the district wanted to enable a BYOPC (bring your own PC) policy but lacked the equipment, tools, and bandwidth to do so.

So how did Presidio solve the district’s IT problems and save the schools money, too? Read More »

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New Book Helps You Embrace Collaboration, Increase Profits

February 3, 2012 at 12:15 pm PST

Do your customers talk about optimizing team performance? Do they struggle with new ways to increase their competitive edge? Are they looking for ways to scale their most precious resources? Then it’s time for you to step up as your customers’ collaboration expert.

Collaboration will be the business opportunity of the decade, and partners who can help move their customers through this transition will see their revenue grow. But you have to be able to speak the language of collaboration and understand its true meaning in a connected world.

But how do you learn and embrace this new language?

A new book provides the lowdown you need to share how improved collaboration represents the best opportunity for business leaders to tap the full range of talents of their people, move with greater speed and flexibility, and compete to win over the next decade.

That new book is called, The Collaboration Imperative: Executive Strategies for Unlocking Your Organization’s True Potential. Cisco’s very own Carl Wiese, SVP Global Collaboration Sales, and Ron Ricci, VP Corporate Positioning, wrote this book for business leaders in all industries around the world and to help our partners have a new conversation with customers.

Find out more about what’s inside the book and how you can buy it for a special partner discounted rate.

Read More »

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Shopper Alert! Good Deals to be Found with Cisco HCS

February 2, 2012 at 9:06 am PST

In today’s economic climate, a value-conscious shopper may look to wholesalers such as Costco to stock up on household goods. I frequently find myself at Costco versus specialty stores, because I know I can get the same high-quality olive oil at a fraction of the price.

And when you switch out the olive oil for network solutions, the concept remains the same.

Earlier this week, I shared a blog post about Nexus IS’ experience with wholesaler Neutral Tandem’s Cisco Hosted Collaboration Solution (HCS) proof-of-concept trial. We got to hear the VAR’s side of the story, but I knew you’d want to know more. So I checked in with Ian Neale, Neutral Tandem’s VP of Product Marketing, and asked him to give me an insider’s look at his company’s wholesale model.

What I really wanted to find out was what our partners could expect when working with them, and, more important, how they can help partners increase their revenue opportunities. Want to know what I learned? Read More »

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Increase Wallet Share–and Help Customers Get More from Their Networks

February 1, 2012 at 7:07 pm PST

It’s quiz time! Which of the following is true?

a) Every second, one hour of video is being uploaded to YouTube.

b) Four years from now, there will be 7.1 billion mobile connected devices.

c) By 2015, Internet traffic volume will be the equivalent of downloading every movie ever made.

d) All of the above.

I’ll give you a moment to ponder…give up? The answer is d: all of the above.

Are your customers ready for this influx of data, video, and devices? Not to worry. Cisco has you—and your customers’ networks—covered.

Today, Cisco is again leading in switching innovation by supporting 100, 40, and 10 Gigabit over Ethernet (GE) for Cisco Nexus and Catalyst switches. These advancements are fully scalable, intelligent, and cloud-ready—and apply to the campus and data center.

For partners, this provides a very profitable opportunity to help customers improve and upgrade their networks as they embrace cloud computing and mobility, continue to load up the network with video, and struggle to get their arms around the data deluge.

So how do you begin the conversation with customers? Read More »

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Know It, Use It, Sell It: One VAR’s Journey with Cisco HCS

January 31, 2012 at 11:33 am PST

Would you buy a car from a dealership where none of the salesmen knew how to drive? Or order prime rib at a restaurant where the chef was a strict vegetarian? What about when it comes to your customer’s network? Are you willing to risk installing products that you don’t have firsthand experience with? I’m guessing the answer is “no.”

When making purchases, big or small, customers want to have confidence that the company they partner with has in-depth knowledge and can stand behind the products they sell. Consider Amy Smith, Director of Collaboration at Nexus IS and a Cisco Gold Certified Partner. She’s committed to live by her company’s marketing motto: “Know it, use it, sell it.”

This was the case when Nexus IS decided to add Cisco’s Hosted Collaboration Solution (HCS) — an offering that allows partners to provide a wide range of Cisco collaboration applications to their customers as a subscriber-based service—to its portfolio. Their first step was to go the wholesale route and participate in Neutral Tandem’s proof-of-concept trial. This was an easy decision, since Nexus IS always tests new products on its own network before installing them on a customer’s network. It’s all about fully understanding, embracing, and discovering best practices of a product before offering it for sale.

Think HCS would be a great addition to your list of offerings?
Learn about Nexus IS’ trial experience and why the timing is right for the HCS market. Read More »

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