LogLogic Talks Channel And Product Strategy
What’s cookin’ at LogLogic? I caught up with Guy Churchward, president and CEO, and Bill Roth, chief marketing officer, to discuss LogLogic’s channel strategy, their market, and why a partner ecosystem works so well in bad (or good) economic times. Here’s a recap.
First off, you might be wondering what LogLogic does. The concept is pretty simple actually. Every computer and appliance box you have generates a log file of everything that’s been going on. And since there’s a lot going on, it’s usually good to know what’s going on.
Both Roth and Churchward spoke about how cloud environments really benefit from using LogLogic’s hardware. Typically in a cloud, there’s a wealth of assets getting tossed around, from the very sensitive, like your social security number or bank account information — to the fairly unimportant, like some spam e-mail. You want to make sure all that stuff is going in the right places, and you want to make sure your apps are doing what they’re supposed to, too.
To track all the application data, it’s always best to go to the log. But the log isn’t really practical to sit there and read. So that’s where LogLogic comes in, tidies up and locks down.
LogLogic can send alerts, automate actions and search for clues in log files to help you take the appropriate actions. LogLogic’s hardware can also sync data across multiple logs to get a bigger picture of user data and user patterns. Churchwood alluded to the uneasy fact that it’s a bit like ‘Big Brother’ watching over your shoulder, but it works. LogLogic can track when a user enters a building, to when he puts a USB stick into his computer, and the data that transpires in-between. And if it’s hooked up to the correct log, you can even tag the time and image on a surveillance system with an image from the camera.
That’s not to say all of LogLogic’s hardware is based around watching your every move. Remember, it’s for making sure all your data and apps aren’t acting up.
LogLogic’s business is mostly rooted in larger companies, but they provide a wide range of product solutions and noted Westcon as one of their main distributors. They happily boasted that their latest line of products leap-frogged the last line, noting that the smallest box available now does the work of the highest-end box of yesteryear’s model.
Roth and Churchward spoke heavily about building out their channel and adding value, making partners and VARs feel welcome and improving and enriching the ecosystem. So I had to ask: every-one’s giving me the same “we love the channel” spiel. Why did LogLogic embrace the channel — out of true love or because of the economy?
Roth spoke up: “It’s both aspects. [But we’re] living ‘Bill Joy’s Law’…which is ‘the smartest people don’t work for you’, [and it’s important to] involve people outside the walls [of your business]. The second issue is the economy. When you see a recession, the SMB are where the jobs are. They’re really the engines of growth”
And regarding how much of LogLogic’s sales were direct?: “We’re at 100% fulfillment. We’re in good shape. [But we’re asking] how do we become better at marketing through the channel and providing incentives? [That being said] we’re really excited, very channel focused.”
And that’s when Churchward stepped in: “We’re driving our business to be channel friendly. LogLogic is 6 1/2 years old and inherently in touch with enterprise accounts. But the products apply to the SMB as well, [though] more ‘medium.’ We’ve got all encompassing [solutions] from $30K to $100K. [We look to the channel] to increase our line of sight [for reaching out to all sized businesses]”
He added “We also don’t want to treat the channel like ‘dump and run’…”
Churchward and Roth both spoke about how their channel is maturing, and how the partners can get into bigger accounts as the product matures as well. There’s a lot of room at LogLogic for ambitious VARs and Churchward noted there was at least a 1:1 ratio between reselling opportunities and professional service dollars.
“We’re looking for VARs in core areas we want to be in. We’re looking for augmentation strategy. [A kind of] friends and family route. In a few years times, we’ll see IT as a service change and the customers we’re selling to change [but we’re always going to be] channel centric…”
So with that said, maybe it’s not all just a spiel, but it’s really where it’s at for the channel.
At the very least, Churchward and Roth exuded passion over the phone; about the products and channel strategy — and perhaps that’s part of the reason for channel success; not simply a vehicle for a ‘go to market’ strategy, but a heavy dedication to it as the reason for business overall.
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