The Next Big Opportunity for Resellers Is Security
IDC Reports Show That Tradition Infrastructure Sales Are On the Decline
Here in Scottsdale Arizona this week, I was invited to present at the Avnet Partner Summit. The session before mine, delivered by Meredith Whalen of IDC, was extremely eye-opening. A wake-up call to all resellers.
A couple of key take aways…
- There’s a shift taking place from what she called 2nd platform to 3rd. One resellers won’t easily make. She’s talking about a significant decline in the demand for servers and on-premise storage or other data center/network product sales. Instead, resellers should be gearing up for 3rd platform – meaning, IoT, Cloud, Analytics, Robotics, Cognitive Systems, and of course – Security.
- The security market is changing too. In my session I talked about how these transformational technologies are opening up huge holes in the security architecture. Next generation security means delivering a clear measurement of risk, and then providing your clients with security intelligence.
- The customer is also changing. She called for more interaction at the line of business level. Businesses are mostly focused on Customer Experience right now – something that is driving the digitalization megatrend. But this sale is largely a software sale – custom software. Traditional resellers can either build it, or head toward services like cloud and security management. Trying to work your way into other 3rd platform areas such as robotics (which is expanding far beyond manufacturing) won’t be easy, however now is the time to start thinking about your future solution strategy.
The Big Hurdle in all of This is Retooling the Sales Team
Having provided sales enablement and marketing strategy services for over 13 years now, I agree with Whalen when she says, sales people can be retooled! However, she also said to expect 50% of your sales team to not make the transition. That’s a big number.
My take on this is simply – most people would be able to make the transition if they believed they needed to. The problem is, most sales people have stopped reading, stopped studying (except for the free product centric training delivered by product vendors), and have stopped investing in their own careers with continuing education.
One simple fact should clear it up – every CIO reads the Wall Street Journal, yet it is rare that I meet someone in sales who does. When I ask a group, “Can anyone tell me what’s going on in the CIO office right now? What’s the big transformation taking shape in their job description?” No one can answer me. It should be obvious. The WSJ is writing about it almost every day.
© 2016, David Stelzl