Welcome to the Future

Channel Partners Online and Channel Futures are ushering in a new era for the channel community.

Robert DeMarzo, VP of Content

April 1, 2021

6 Min Read
Welcome to the Future_white CF logo


Bobby DeMarzo

Please allow me to welcome you to the future. As we bring the Channel Partners and Channel Futures websites together into one destination, we are ushering in a new era for the channel community. One platform allows us to deliver timely insights, industry analysis, peer engagement and real-world business information that connects the entire channel. That community for us represents senior leaders who wake up each day with one goal in mind: how to better serve their customers. Those buyers need a wide range of products and services spanning technology, communications and connectivity solutions, all intended to help the business move forward.

As the pandemic accelerated business model change across the channel we realized that serving two masters in the forms of separate websites was not the best way to help our readers succeed. That readership today spans master agents and agents who are deeply engaged with service providers, MSPs, IT consultants and integrators, and cloud service providers, along with leading vendors and suppliers. Connecting those two communities is more important than ever given the industry landscape.

For us, the process of bridging our sites, spearheaded by the indefatigable Editorial Director Craig Galbraith, was an opportunity to rethink our online strategy. We engaged in deep discussions with key influencers, advisory board members, partners of all kinds and our sponsors to find out how we could better serve the channel. In those discussions, we disclosed our passion to lead the channel forward by focusing on the future. It is truly a great gift to have a brand so appropriately named at a time when everyone wants to understand how monumental trends such as AI, changing work habits, 5G and cloud are reshaping the channel. Those issues should not be housed on two separate sites but brought together so everyone’s perspective can be included to benefit all.

A Proud Heritage

We are also very proud of our heritage and the perspective that it brings to bear. Our history includes the Channel Partners brand, which has been around for more than 25 years with a loyal following. As a result of that engagement, no one knows the partners of leading communications, telco and cable companies better than our team. We also have deep roots in the IT channel where we built loyal followings around The VAR Guy, MSPmentor, MSP 501 and Talkin’ Cloud. Both audiences can now engage with equal fervor on one site that will open up new ways to partner or penetrate new market opportunities.

So today, we unveil the new home for this audience under the Channel Futures brand with a tagline of “Leading Channel Partners Forward.” We do so mindful of the issues all channel leaders need to understand when it comes to growing their organizations, but with management insight tailored to the different business models spanning the information and communications industries. While the winds swirling around the industry are all about complexity and confusion, we are focused on keeping things simple for our audience. Orlando Magic Founder and Senior Vice President Pat Williams penned a masterful book on why paying attention to the little things and keeping things simple are the keys to success. Our simple formula is to bring the channel’s future to light every day by practicing the fundamentals.

Content for All on One Website

So let’s review with you what you will find on the new Channel Futures website.

  • Fresh voices on the state of the industry. We will build upon our thought-provoking coverage of what’s taking place across all channels with a fresh take on what it all means

  • We now have one home where you can find our existing industry-defining research. It’s led by the MSP 501, but our readers will also see a slew of new listings and research in the coming months

  • We will not only offer a fresh take on what’s transpiring in the market, we’ll also highlight the individuals who are newsmakers and what makes them special. If we learned anything through the millions of video conferences we attended — where we saw people’s dogs, families and living rooms — it’s that businesspeople want a personal connection with their peers and partners.

  • Signature stories. Each week our editors will be bringing our readers what we call “signature stories” based on their areas of coverage. These articles will go deeper than the news of the moment to analyze the ramifications by asking the tough questions. You will see these stories around our focus of cloud, communications and security.

  • It has been and continues to be a hot topic for partners who are morphing their operations to play on both the communications and technology sides of the business. Not every partner will have a converged model, but we realize this movement is part of the channel’s future. So having one destination for these stories and insight makes more sense than ever before.

  • Events coverage. Our Channel Partners Conference & Expo is the industry’s largest cross-channel event. With growing numbers of MSPs joining our core audience of agents and master agents, it makes sense to highlight our agendas and speaker coverage on one site going forward.

  • Digital events. We are expanding the number of digital events which educate audience members on the industry’s hottest technology topics. Our Channel Futures website will now make it easier for our combined audience to have access to those webinars either live or on-demand.

  • A platform for your voice. We realize that the industry thrives on different points of view, so we welcome content from our audience members and subject-matter experts who want to impart their wisdom on the most-pressing issues of the day. This will also enable us to further extend our website as a community platform where peer perspectives can be shared with ongoing commentary.

  • Diversity, equity and inclusion. DE&I is one of the most important leadership issues of the day, spanning every channel organization. It’s a key area of focus for our editorial coverage, with our stories tailored to deliver actionable information. Business leaders can use this insight to build high-performance teams made up of diverse individuals and have equitable compensation plans in place.

So welcome to the future. We hope you are excited as we are about the new Channel Futures website. Launching one website for the entire channel was truly a team effort. We would like to recognize our entire editorial team, the Informa developers and designers and our marketing staff for all their hard work. Special thanks to Buffy Naylor and Traci Verbaarschott who worked tirelessly with our audience and customers to make this a smooth transition.

Let us know what you think by emailing me at [email protected] or reach out to our editorial director, Craig Galbraith, at [email protected].

Bobby DeMarzo is vice president of content for Informa Tech Channels.

About the Author(s)

Robert DeMarzo

VP of Content, Channel Futures

Robert DeMarzo is the vice president of content for Informa Tech Channels.

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