Build Your Cloud Tribe
As solution providers adjust their IT business models to take advantage of cloud, they often ask me about business operations and best practice strategies for positioning their businesses using cloud as a differentiator. The advice I offer is to create a personal ecosystem of peers and other experts to help guide them rather than re-inventing the wheel.
One of the best ways to start building a great support system for your business needs is to take advantage of the networking opportunities and the vendor and industry experts making presentations at conferences throughout the year — consider those forums an opportunity to sample the different flavors of assistance available.
Throughout our industry are IT business owners, consultants, and vendor experts — many with backgrounds as VARs or MSPs — who offer insight and motivation for solution providers keen to distinguish themselves from the pack when it comes to cloud solutions. At Ingram Micro, we often partner with those professionals to offer greater value to our resellers. Each thought leader offers his or her own distinctive advice, but all provide insight on how to turn cloud into a recurring revenue juggernaut for your IT business.
For example, at the Ingram Micro Cloud Summit 2012, June 4-7 in Scottsdale, we bring solution providers struggling to determine a clear and appropriate cloud strategy together with not only Ingram Micro experts, but also solution provider peers who have been successful in building their cloud business. Additionally, we offer access to other experts who provide guidance that speeds time to market and brings cloud profits to the bottom line more quickly. Events such as these provide partners the opportunity to hear detailed advice on marketing and sales efforts that help fill sales pipelines, as well as operational adjustments necessary to deliver the full benefit of cloud solutions. Keep in mind as well that many industry events are open gatherings that welcome not just partners but all interested IT providers.
My point is that if a solution provider has concerns around cloud, other emerging technologies, or business in general, they should look for counsel from other partners, distributors and vendors. Regardless of where a solution partner starts to build that network of support — their own personal cloud tribe — having peers and partners willing to offer support and advice as you move your cloud strategy from the drawing board to the marketplace is essential to maturing an efficient and profitable cloud offering.
Renee Bergeron is VP of managed services and cloud computing at Ingram Micro, overseeing such efforts as Ingram Micro Cloud. Monthly guest blogs such as this one are part of MSPmentor’s annual sponsorship program. Read all of Bergeron’s guest blogs here.