Small Business Susan

The one on one conversations

http://www.vladville.com/2010/07/wpc-keynote-we-know-youre-scared-but-please-stop-whining.html


Okay I want you to scroll down and read Randy’s comment… here lemme copy and then I’ll comment on the message I got from WPC that does NOT come across in the digitalwpc presentations …


I think that one thing we MSP/support provider partners tend to forget is that there are other types of partners out there and that really we are at the bottom of the partner ecosystem… somewhere down by the blown out wellhead.


So, when Microsoft makes policy and product decisions, they are more concerned with the Dev community, or the Dynamics community or the partners catering to the enterprise where they might sell 100 server licenses at a pop or deploy 5,000 VDI seats under contract.


Our world doesn’t orbit close to their sun. We are probably more closely aligned with Uranus (appropriate peer planet name) than Mercury.


While it’s true that there are different partner sizes,…  it’s true there are different partner sizes.  What do I mean by that?   I’m going to go back to the theme that Ballmer blew it this year with his presentation.  I didn’t hear from Ballmer that he has people in the Partner channel concerned about the different types of partners and ensuring that each TYPE of partner was looked at to ensure that there were solutions for them, I heard it from the one on one  conversations that  this invite to WPC allowed me to have.


It was in the one on ones where conversations where had where they said they feel they have a strong SMB presense and other competitors are trying to gain a foothold and they can’t figure out a way in.  It was in those one on ones that you really got the view that Kevin Turner and other execs were will pushing to ensure that the every unique type of partner was considered… from the large account resellers to the OEMs to the independent software vendors to the value added resellers to the disti’s to the solution partners.. make no mistake here folks… Microsoft has yet to build a self healing, self configuring, self deploying SMB server that can do all this stuff on their own.   Customers will still want someone to handle this stuff. 


The SMB partner may not sell 100 server licenses a pop but don’t sell yourself short folks… Microsoft hasn’t built the software that can self configure, and they can’t reach the SMB businesses like you can.


Can they do a better job for SMB resellers?  Absolutely.  But do they need you more than you think?  You betcha they need you.


Think about this folks.  Microsoft paid to send me here.  They aren’t telling me what to write.  They didn’t tell me what to say.  Many of the one on ones I was giving feedback (yeah got in about VLSC),  telling people that Ballmer’s comments didn’t go over well, saying what you’ve said over and over again about the partner program about the trust factor with BPOS.  If they really and truly didn’t care about the SMB space at all, and the SMB partner was at the bottom rung of the ecosystem, why send me here at all? 


So I’m not convinced that the SMB partner is at the outer edge of the solar system.  Microsoft still needs you.


More than you think… and maybe more than they want you to know.


FTC Blogger disclosure:  Microsoft has offered to pay for and I accepted travel, lodging and pass for WPC.  Otherwise I’d be cheap and watching it on www.digitalwpc.com and following the #WPC10 hashtags on twitter.com.  Fortunately today it’s much cooler so I can’t say I’m blogging from hot and humid DC this evening.