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A conversation with the company's North American channel sales manager reveals his strategies and goals.
November 18, 2019
When he first arrived as the channel sales account manager of Jamf in March of 2017, Gianpiero Policicchio had a mission — to use his 18 previous years of channel experience with technology provider Insight to help grow and nurture Jamf’s relationships with its channel partners and customers.
For Policicchio, who has since been named manager for North American channel sales with the Apple device management software vendor, that continuing channel development role appears to suit him well.
When he joined Jamf, the company did about 20% of its business through the channel. The company now does about 50% of its global sales through channel partners.
Jamf’s Gianpiero Policicchio
“I had been on the reseller side of things for 18 years,” Policicchio told Channel Futures last week at the company’s annual Jamf JNUC user conference in Minneapolis. “I like building things up.”
Jamf had started down the channel road a few years before he arrived, but he was brought in to help grow and mature it while driving its strategy to make it an even bigger part of the company’s road map.
To do that, Policicchio says he has been focusing on a couple of key strategies that he’s followed in his career so far — to develop partnerships that go beyond just product fulfillment and working hand-in-hand with partners to drive the whole effort to serve their customers.
“That means I’m big on data analytics and sharing them with a given partner to develop strategy that you can agree on and execute,” he said.
One strategy that he’s brought in a comprehensive way is the idea of account mapping for customers and partners, so that all the data about prospects can be better used to fuel new and wider sales and services. Account mapping allows Jamf to learn more about what customers and partners need and use so the company can better offer what partners and customers already seek, he said.
That could mean looking at data that shows which partners are selling Apple hardware to customers so that Jamf representatives can work with them to develop a go-to-market plan using a list of shared data analytics that can make those sales more effective, said Policicchio.
“We can use that to identify accounts that have a propensity to buy Jamf products,” he explained. “The entanglement that you want is with three legs of the stool — Jamf, Apple and the reseller services. That means approaching customers with our partners, which increases stickiness.”
Another key process for customer engagement is identifying the largest partners that sell Apple hardware to home in on their success, he said.
“Maybe we want to train our attention on them rather than try to boil the ocean” for leads. “At the end of the day we are trying to help customers succeed with Apple. When we partner with the channel it is for scalability.”
All these concepts are helping to mature the company’s relationship with the channel.
“Jamf is on a journey, from a startup company that was originally on a direct sales model and that has now been moving over the last few years to more channel operations,” he said. “We’re moving away from selling particular products to selling and providing business outcomes.”
Jamf’s main products include Jamf Now and Jamf Pro, which help enterprises and other organizations to manage large numbers of Apple devices from a single console, and Jamf Connect, which helps users provide secure access for employees and other users to the programs and resources they need to do their work.
The company’s latest product, Jamf Protect, an Apple endpoint protection system that provides deeper macOS security, will be the latest offering to …
… experience this sales approach, according to Policicchio. Announced at the Jamf JNUC event, Jamf Protect is now in the process of being introduced to channel partners so they can be trained in its features, sales, deployment and use.
Insight’s Christopher Hurd
Jamf is diving deeper into the channel because its one of the best ways to become closer to end user customers and bolster those relationships, he said.
“At the end of the day, we are just a part of a company’s IT spend,” Policicchio said. “We leverage the channel because they sell everything and their strength with the end user customers is deeper than us going in alone. That’s the benefit of the channel when everything is said and done.”
One of the intriguing moves Jamf announced at its conference was that it is splitting its marketing approach to its two biggest market segments – enterprises and education – so it can better serve each one, said Hurd. Previously, Jamf had served all its customers using one approach.
“I love their focus that they are breaking it up into enterprise and education separately,” said Hurd.
Schools need to focus on students and staff and their needs, while enterprises need to focus on BYOD and employees, he explained.
“What I like is that Jamf is looking at it as two separate camps. The requirements are the same, but how you get to that is different,” he added.
Read more about:VARs/SIs
Todd R. Weiss is an award-winning technology journalist who covers open source and Linux, cloud service providers, cloud computing, virtualization, containers and microservices, mobile devices, security, enterprise applications, enterprise IT, software development and QA, IoT and more. He has worked previously as a staff writer for Computerworld and eWEEK.com, covering a wide variety of IT beats. He spends his spare time working on a book about an unheralded member of the 1957 Milwaukee Braves, watching classic Humphrey Bogart movies and collecting toy taxis from around the world.
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