I had the honor of delivering the Keynote address at Ingram Micro’s Inaugural Seismic Partner Conference in Dallas, TX yesterday.
For a complete copy of my Keynote Address and PowerPoint, click here.
The conference had 135 Ingram Partners registered, and was supported by Vendors such as Intel, Level Platforms, VaultLogix, Autotask and MX Logic. Also conducting presentations were Ingram Seismic Partners, and covering the event was Pedro Pereira, editor of eWEEK Strategic Partner and columnist for eWEEK Channel Insider. For Pedro’s initial article on the event, click here.
I am very impressed with Ingram’s Seismic offerings engineered to help their Partners in the Managed Services model. In addition to training and other offers, Ingram provides services its Partners can use to become more efficient and effective from an operational perspective, as well as many they can resell as Annuity-Based offerings to their clients such as:
· Remote Monitoring and Management
· Email and Web Defense
· Network Operations Center
· Help Desk
· Print Monitoring and Management
· Online Backup and Restore
· Professional Services Automation
I must say that I was extremely impressed with the makeup of the Partners in attendance. These Partners were there to learn and apply what they learned from the Speakers and Presenters, including Justin Crotty, Vice President, Services Sales, from Ingram Micro. I am very pleased to see how far these Partners, Vendors and Distributors have come in just the last 12 months in the field of Managed Services. We are really starting to stretch our collective legs in this arena, and I mentioned in my Keynote that these were the types of alliances and resources we sorely needed in 2005, when we were trying to figure Managed Services out all by ourselves, through trial and error. We certainly would have been much more successful a great deal sooner had we had these types of resources to leverage.
My Keynote focused on my perceptions of large retailers such as Dell competing directly with Solution Providers for end-client business, and what we can do about it, the effect our current economic situation will have on Solution Providers, and Managed Services Providers in particular, and my recommendations to help Managed Services Providers increase their revenues in 2008. Here are the key takeaways:
2008 will be a good year for Managed Services Providers.
· Don’t eat your pig all at once – go one leg at a time (you’ll need to be familiar with my 3-legged pig joke to get this)
· Build deep client relationships as your clients’ Trusted Advisor and outsourced CIO to ward off competitive threats
· Become Managed Services Ninjas and leverage our competitor’s marketing against them, proving our value over theirs to prospects
· Leverage our Vendor and Distributors’ services and support offerings, as well as other benefits such as facilities tours and product and solution demos and Marketing Development Funds
· Expand your annuity-based Service Offerings to your Clients
· Weight your deliverables close to 60% Services and 40% Hardware and Software
· If your client base averages less than 26 users, move up to the 26-100 user space
· Modify your Managed Services Agreements to extend their terms, and allow you to modify their value during the term
· Add financing as an option to each and every Proposal
· Take advantage of this event to strengthen your relationship with Ingram Micro – accelerate the opportunity for a win-win relationship
For a complete copy of my Keynote Address and PowerPoint, click here. I request that you download it, as the takeaways will be much more meaningful in their intended context.