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How Cisco is investing in partner success

January 08, 2020

How Cisco is investing in partner success
 
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Transitions are hard—but if you have a steadfast partner by your side, change doesn’t seem so difficult. That’s how Cisco and Ingram Micro see each other during this pivotal season in Cisco’s history.
 
In this episode of B2B Tech Talk, guest host Logan Lyles of Sweet Fish Media catches up with:
 
Pat Dempsey, distribution services and software manager at Cisco,
 
Nicole Dziedzic, senior vendor business manager for Cisco at Ingram Micro,
 
and Ryan Kingston, manager of U.S. and Canada distribution at Cisco.
 
Live from the 2019 Ingram Micro ONE event, they discuss:
  • Cisco’s pivot to becoming primarily a software company
  • How Cisco and Ingram Micro are helping each other through the transition
  • How Cisco is investing more in partner success than ever before


Cisco: A software company

For partners who have been with Cisco from the early days, it might be disconcerting to learn that the traditional hardware provider is switching to software. However, it shouldn’t come as much of a surprise granted that most companies are implementing more cloud-based services.
 
Due to the shift in Cisco’s product and service line, updated marketing techniques will need to be put in place. Ryan reassures partners that Cisco will provide all of the necessary materials and training for partners to be successful in selling new Cisco products.
 
"The operating model in a software and recurring revenue business is completely different than what we've done for 30 years very successfully at Cisco." - Ryan Kingston


Making the pivot

In order for this transition to go smoothly, Cisco is prioritizing current partners over making any new sales.
 
Cisco’s primary concern is making sure partners like Ingram Micro understand and fully adopt the new solutions. Nicole points out that Cisco wants partners to get as much value out of their products as possible.
 
This mindset will hopefully trickle down to the end customer.
 
"Ingram Micro is here to help scale Cisco." - Nicole Dziedzic


Increased partner success

It used to be that solution providers sold the product to their customers and that was that. Now, Cisco finds it imperative that partners have all the assistance they need after the sale in order to succeed.
 
The approach to increase partner success during this transitional period will include:
 
  • Better positioning products within the marketplace
  • Helping partners adopt products and successfully expand their offerings
  • Enhancing the end customer’s experience
  • Assisting in the development of a steady revenue stream for partners and distributors
 
It always takes time getting used to changes. Nevertheless, with Ingram Micro and Cisco’s strong partnership, this transition is set to occur smoothly and result in increased revenue.