September 18, 2014
By Marc McClure
One of the greatest challenges for reseller partners today is the rapid pace at which new technologies are being introduced and assessing adoption as the marketplace shifts. When you look at cloud, converged infrastructure, data analytics, IoT, SDN and hosted collaboration, it can be overwhelming for a solution provider when selecting a specialization. Solution providers who choose to work with a distributor that is extremely diversified to support these technology advancements will find it easier to navigate changes and build a road map for success.
New opportunities arise every day and early adopters with narrow focus and a services-led approach tend to be most successful. We recommend choosing two or three specializations with adjacent focuses. As challenging as it can be for a VAR to determine which technology to focus on, it can be equally difficult for end users to understand which technologies make the most sense for their business. If you look at the go-to-market strategies for most of the top technology organizations, you start to see common threads such as a “cloud first” “mobile first” strategy that alters the way technology is consumed. These concepts, along with data center modernization, create a tremendous amount of opportunity in the channel.
Shifting the focus from fulfillment to services is important for future success. Acting as an adviser to the end-user customer, committing resources and offering value-added services will increase customer loyalty and sales success.
Over the past several years, Tech Data has made significant investments into both our cloud platform and advanced technologies to better align the company to where the market is heading. From there, it starts with a conversation with our partners to help them understand which of these trends make the most sense to pursue based on their unique profile. Once the focus areas are identified, we build out a road map that puts us on a path to be successful together by making commitments to achieving milestones. If we work together, we’ve found we can help our partners get to the end result in a much more efficient manner.
As a distributor, we act as a support mechanism to the solution provider — offering scale and sales enablement. We pride ourselves on being students of the industry. That is why we offer one-on-one consultations with solution providers, conferences, events, trainings and workshops. This cross-functional training provides education for partners that ultimately enable exceptional sales growth.
As the IT landscape is constantly changing, we help our solution providers stay ahead of the curve, offering education and enablement for channel partners to capitalize on opportunities and grow their businesses.
Marc McClure is director of VAR field sales in the eastern U.S. for Tech Data Corp.
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