As we say goodbye to another impactful year for the indirect channel, a sense of excitement transpires when we think about the coming year and ask ourselves: What’s in store for 2018?
To learn what technology trends to expect, we asked several TBI leaders to share what they predict will be trending for the indirect channel in 2018.
Continued M&A activity will increase the value of relationships with end-users.
We’ve all seen a fair share of mergers, acquisitions and even bankruptcies in the industry this year. Activity like this will continue in 2018, giving selling partners a leg up to augment their consultancy practices, offering up complete, end-to-end solutions. It also means selling partners need to find a Master Agent to call home, one that has close-knit relationships with vendors and the necessary systems and tools in place to navigate changes in processes and solution portfolios.
End-users are ready to digitally enhance their operations, relying on you to support their journey.
Your customers are willing and ready to embrace digital transformation, not just initiating mobile strategies, search and collaboration but discussing and implementing cloud computing and how their ecosystem can best work holistically and efficiently (data storage, file hosting/sharing, email and CRM, etc.). They want to capitalize on innovative technologies to work smarter, faster and enhance the end-user experience. To our partners' advantage, the skills gap remains wide open, providing a tremendous to advise on strategy and solutions that future-proof infrastructure.
Cloud Computing for SMBs is a land grab.
This year, CFOs said cloud computing has the most measurable impact on their businesses, and it’s not slowing down. Cloud computing is projected to increase from $67B in 2015 to over $160B by 2020. And real opportunity lies within the SMB space, as over the next two years 78% of U.S. small businesses will have fully adopted cloud computing. These organizations are investing in data storage, disaster recovery, CRMs and applications to innovate. Now is the opportune time for selling partners to share previous SMB successes, share case studies and demonstrate how they can help prospective companies win.
Applications = Commissions
Innovation at the application level is continuing at an unprecedented pace. Customers are becoming more reliant on applications critical to their business, making it a no-brainer for selling partners to invest where customers interact most – their endpoints. Complement core offerings by providing solutions that support and facilitate those applications through management, hosting, prioritization, access, increased availability security and backup.
We’ve only just touched upon Unified Communication potential.
This year, we saw the world’s largest networking gear manufacturer purchase Broadsoft, giving the company a strong position in the UC space with the most comprehensive set of collaboration solutions. A smart move by Cisco, as spending on UCaaS is expected to increase, reaching $24.88 billion by 2020. Not only do end-users want to offload the tedious management and maintenance of phone systems, but the popularity of remote workforces, smart devices and applications are driving more organizations to adopt cloud voice, conferencing and collaboration.
More devices mean more cybersecurity threats.
To no surprise, Gartner predicts IT spend on security will increase to $93 billion in 2018. High profile disasters witnessed this year like the NSA and Equifax breach and Wannacry ransomware attack demonstrated that even the most technically sophisticated organizations are vulnerable to cybercrime. Our selling partners have more security solutions in their arsenal than ever before. We encourage selling partners to get educated on what services they should recommend with each sale to protect customers and secure strong, future relationships.
Watch the video to hear more on these predictions from TBI leadership.
Stay ahead of the curve.
Keep up-to-date on new technologies, new portfolio additions, trainings and marketing materials. Contact TBI to:
- Speak with a solutions engineer
- Pick our brains on complementary services
- Review case studies and other peer successes around relevant technologies
- Get marketing support for upcoming mailings and meetings
About the Author
Emily Ball is a Partner Marketing Specialist at TBI. Her objective is to develop strategic programs and help propel sales for TBI’s subagents. Serving as their marketing liaison, Emily fosters growth through strategy discussions, assistance with content creation, campaign development and more. You can contact Emily at email@example.com or connect with Emily on LinkedIn.