I spent some time over this past month reflecting on what made my first Cisco Partner Summit amazing. My favorite moment was hearing Wendy Bahr explain why our partner ecosystem is the best in the world. But it was the Impact Sessions on how partners can leverage the ecosystem that got me thinking: How strong are the connections between our Resellers and our Ecosystem Partner ISV Community? How can I own improving those connections?
Back in February 2017, I was on a superstar team made up of cross-functional, silo-breaking individuals who started the journey to find the answers to these questions. We went to Mexico City to participate in an experience called “Start Up Cisco.” This 3-day course focused on solving business and customer challenges through simple, easy-to-implement solutions. We focused on the questions that often go unanswered, creating a knowledge gap that lessens the revenue potential of our ISVs for Cisco Sales and for our reseller community. Basic questions such as ‘Who are the ISVs?’ ‘Where do they sell?’ ‘What do they offer?’ ‘How can we contact them?’ Our team found research showing that 47% of ISVs say they receive less than 25% of their revenue through channel partners (Cloud Technology Alliance, Partnering in the Cloud, 2015 ISV Report). This data drove home the point that the knowledge gap is a problem.
So we decided to “OWN the Solution.” Over the next few months, we created an interactive and simple-to-use directory. We dubbed it the Ecosystem Partner Locator (EPL) and were thrilled to launch it to our internal teams in August. But we knew we needed to move the needle further. You know, as they say in Texas, “Go Big or Go Home!” So we continued our work and in early November at Partner Summit, we launched a beta version of the Ecosystem Partner Locator externally. We are bridging that knowledge gap!
So, what is this Ecosystem Partner Locator (EPL)? It is an online directory that makes it fast and easy to find the ecosystem partners that meet your specific sales needs, providing searchable access by vertical, by Cisco architecture, and by region. You’ll find win stories, sales tools, and videos that show how our Ecosystem Partners can help you “Sell Higher” by opening access to new Line of Business managers, increasing deal size, and selling business outcomes with solutions to your customers’ business challenges.
OK, now that I’ve enticed you to check out the EPL, I’d like your feedback! Come try the Beta Preview of the EPL – http://cs.co/epl – and tell me what you think. The Ecosystem Partner Locator was created for you. OWN IT by telling us what you like, what you don’t like, what will make it a powerful tool for your success.
With your input, the EPL can help drive revenue. Now, I am imagining a super-amazing Partner Summit 2018 when Wendy Bahr explains how the best partner ecosystem got even better.