Cisco's Internet of Everything: Partners Must Engage

Cisco's Internet of Everything: Partners Must Engage

Cisco Systems (NASDAQ:CSCO) is talking up the Internet of Everything to channel partners, an on-the-horizon opportunity it pegs at more than $14 trillion worldwide.

Cisco Systems (NASDAQ:CSCO) has been talking up the Internet of Everything (IoE), its term for a $14.4 trillion worldwide market opportunity—a figure it compiled in a February white paper--based on the potential of smart network connections to unlock limitless productivity for businesses worldwide.

Part of the vendor’s angle is to make sure partners know there’s a piece in the grand scheme for them—that is, whenever the IoE takes enough shape for partners to capitalize on it. Until then, it’s all talk. Strategically, Cisco is transitioning from its previous Internet of Things banner--where all manner of devices are connected--to span a far wider, more expansive, embedded world.

Where do channel partners fit in Cisco’s grand new plan to conquer the IoE world?

“One way to look at the Internet of Everything (IoE) is that it’s about opportunity—and that the scope of that opportunity is astounding,” wrote Chad Berndtson, Cisco global partner marketing content and social media strategist, in a recent blog post. “One question that’s coming up more often from partners is this one: ‘What does the Internet of Everything really mean to me?’ And most of the time, that’s not only a conceptual question, but also a practical one: ‘Hey, Cisco. This IoE ‘thing’ you’re talking about…say that it does come to pass. Well, what will my business and priorities look like as a result?’”

Evidently, Carlos Dominguez, Cisco senior VP and technology evangelist, who delivered a keynote at the vendor’s recent Marketing Velocity event in Cannes, France, has some answers.

“We’ve been basically connecting a lot of devices onto the Internet for quite a while already,” Dominguez said. “All the projections show that it’s going to grow exponentially into the trillions, with sensors and all these different devices are connected. So the Internet of Everything is taking into consideration there’s an explosion of smart objects that are going to connect,” he said.

“Really, the Internet of Everything is our framework on how we build a set of standards to be able to connect all these sensors, not only for us, but for the world and be able to extract the valuable information that gives you intelligence, it converges everything and it makes it easier to extract the value of the sensors.”

And, just how does this benefit Cisco partners selling into the data center, selling collaboration and/or cloud services?

“My biggest advice to the partner community is at this moment in time we’re still in the very early process in the journey of the Internet of Everything, but for them to understand that this is something they should keep tabs on, they should try to get involved with, because it’s going to be transformational,” said Dominguez.

“As we connect more and more things, regardless of the industry, there’s going to be incredible amounts of information and data that will be analyzed, predictive analytics will be run on, and ultimately it will make businesses much more efficient, and change their business models in ways we can’t even imagine. The secret [for partners] is how do you harness what you already do, and how do you begin to explore in these areas that are evolving?”

Ultimately, it will come down to simple blocking and tackling, he said. As a partner, “how do you make it simple [for your customers]? What are you going to do to deliver value and wisdom to your customers?...The marketing message is around simplicity and value on how you translate information to wisdom. And to engage [on social media]. It’s no longer about what you’re saying about yourself, it’s what they’re saying about you.”

So, translating…the IoE isn’t there yet, but it is something to keep tabs on because one day it will be big, really big. But until then, carry on folks.

TAGS: Sales
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