Juniper Networks competes with Cisco and other vendors over a rapidly evolving networking market that’s being heavily influenced by trends such as the mobile enterprise and cloud computing. Partners account for a very significant part of the company’s revenue, and Juniper decided to give this aspect of its business a boost by overhauling the Partner Advantage program.
“We are excited to deliver on our promise to differentiate our high-performance partners and create more compelling value to all Juniper Networks partners,” Umeoka wrote. “It is all about scaling with precision, investing with impact, and recognizing achievement.”
The program breaks down to three main packs each covering a different area. The training for sales and technical personnel that’s made available through the company’s Learning Academy has been rebranded as Reach, and there’s an online portal named Marketing Concierge that offers merchandising resources. It also has a gimmicky new name – Accelerate. Last but not least is Rewards, the appropriately named and expanded incentive bundle (including things such as discounts and promotions) that’s available to Partner Advantage resellers.
The channel is a very important element in practically every major IT vendor’s business. Partners allow a company to significantly extend its reach in such a way that often makes more sense than setting up a marketing strategy from scratch, and some firms even go as far as offering their products exclusively through resellers.
This can also backlash. Backup solutions vendor FalconStor is currently slowly recovering from a legal ordeal that was coupled with the exodus of several major partners, but at the same time other vendors are demonstrating that there’s a lot of value involved as well.
EMC CFO David Goulden talked about his company’s acquisition strategy at EMC World 2012, and among other things noted that his firm’s strong partner relations is one of the main things that allow it to realize a big return on non-organic investments. VMware, DataDomain and Isilon are but three success stories that validate Goulden’s point.