Events for monitoring, reporting, performance and usage of IT infrastructure happen almost every day in the United States.
What has been the main topic of discussion at the events this year? The Hybrid Cloud.
The rapid growth of the cloud over the past few years has been impressive, but it remains to be in the transitional phase. Despite its popularity, the industry is still demanding a balance of on-premises and cloud solutions. Since many customers want to keep at least some of their assets on-premises, hybrid offerings have emerged as the most valuable way to optimize product offerings and customer environments. A majority of companies are interested in working with a single cloud provider that supports a hybrid model, as 74% of customers expect their provider to offer on-premises expertise.
The most interesting metric I heard during these conferences is that Partners with over 50% of revenue related to the cloud receive higher gross profits, more new customers, increased revenue per employee and faster overall business growth (compared to Partners without more than 50% of their profits from the cloud).
A couple weeks ago, I attended a conference focused on Application collaboration, cloud tools and Infrastructure and Security called InterOp New York.
Most exhibitors offered Infrastructure Monitoring and Cloud Service Provider solutions. I found it to be very interesting to discuss how hosting companies have adapted to the cloud with their tools and a majority of the Infrastructure Management tools at this event were focused on appliance.
3 days later, I went to San Jose, California to attend MSP World.
MSP World was a rather small event, mostly of interest to Managed Service Providers looking for cloud and security tools to offer to their customers. Most of the discussions were focused on the Cloud, Security and Business. Smaller events like MSP World are great for meeting new contacts. I find that there's much more time to speak with attendees and see how we could do business together. This type of event is great for meeting distributors, VARs and MSPs to work with.
One day later, I was on a flight to Chicago to attend a bigger event called SharePoint Fest.
About 400 attendees and 40 exhibitors attended this year, which is a huge ratio. Like most SharePoint shows, exhibitors were focused on migration, consulting, third party tools, etc. This conference was very interesting and diverse on the topics of development, migration, mobile devices, content, etc. We were able to meet some very interesting hosting companies, third party solutions and consulting companies to work with in the future.
Since GSX is in the process of transforming its Partner channel from "direct" to "indirect", these events are a great opportunity to build our network with potential Partners in the Consulting, Hosting and Managed Service Provider areas.
Dedicating a significant amount of time to attending these type of events is essential for making your Partner program thrive. These events have not only proven to be valuable for companies looking to expand their Partner network...They also provide companies with the latest industry insight to better prepare for the future.