Igniting the Revolution...

Change the way that Microsoft does Marketing...or Get Fired Tryin'

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  • Blog Post: Reaching out to the Disappointed...

    No one likes to have disappointed customers or partners. It's not fun and you feel like a failure. Nevertheless, it' s better, IMHO, to reach out to those who are upset than to let their irritation fester. After our WIN calls , I make a point of contacting those who gave me the lowest eval scores to...
  • Blog Post: Scalable Partner Marketing Engines...

    I'm opinionated. I guess every blogger is. :-) But I have particularly strong feelings about the critical components to a scalable partner-led marketing engine. First, we don’t want to guess where the opportunities are. Nor do we want to guess which products are the ones where we should focus. Nor which...
  • Blog Post: Building a Public Sector Partner Community, Part 2

    A community needs to organize around something , or as Hugh MacLeod would say, " the social object ." So, what is the object around which Microsoft partners who sell into State & Local Governments and Academic might organize? If we can provide partners with a true "plug-n-play" format for driving...
  • Blog Post: Blog Value Proposition...

    Last night, lying in bed (hey, where else to do solid thinking), I outlined the three focus areas for the blog.... A Play by Play (with color commentary :-) of the evolving process I hope to use to build community and leverage smart data to help revolutionize the way that Microsoft and our partners do...
  • Blog Post: Building a Public Sector Partner Community, Part 1

    Let's review the assets that the Public Sector partner marketing team has. a newsletter that has 1300 subscribers (we're just talking raw numbers here) two portal sites (here's one and here's the other --more control over the former) A " Get Engaged" program that has some momentum Tele-Partner Account...
  • Blog Post: Building Community...

    Too often, Microsoft puts the cart before the horse. We ask partners to make investments up front; invest time in readiness, training, competencies, or whatever. Microsoft's partners who sell into State, Local, and Fed Gov't, plus Academic institutions owe me nothing . That's NOTHING as in I've never...
  • Blog Post: Thinking Holistically About Your Event

    Roxane and Diamond Technologies are hosting the Microsoft RV next Tuesday and they have left no stone unturned in rallying people to attend the event. Instead of a direct to client perspective alone, they have worked with an "influencer" model, reaching out to local Chambers of Commerce, graduate...
  • Blog Post: Leaving $5000 on the Table...

    Please don't do it. I hate when partners don't leverage everything we can offer you. If you are both a Microsoft and HP partner , you can apply for up to $5000 towards your marketing budget. ( Get the welcome kit here ) Here are some examples of applications that have been approved.[I couldn't...
  • Blog Post: Microsoft Most Valuable Professionals at Your Event

    For partners who want to provide a 3rd party perspective on Microsoft products at their events, you( for partners in the US East Region only, right now ). now have the opportunity to engage Microsoft MVP's ( http://mvp.support.microsoft.com/ ). The MVP's are very talented individuals who are " raving...
  • Blog Post: If Ready to Go isn't...

    If you're looking for a quick way to jumpstart your marketing efforts and you don't have a lot of time or money (who does, right?), then you should consider a Ready to Go (RTG) campaign. As one partner put it, "I think the program is the best that MS/Dynamics has done in the 15 years that I have been...
  • Blog Post: So, how do I set up an event?

    Lauren from Essent wrote in today with some good questions (and legitimate complaints) 1. Can you please send me some kind of “steps to take” list for creating an event? I have been told many different things. Something that explains what needs to be done to set up the event prior to the event and then...
  • Blog Post: SBS Event Kit...Free

    If you are in the small biz space, this may be worthwhile for you: Small Business Server Partner Event Kit Take your business presence to the next level with professional resources available FOR FREE from Microsoft!! Have you ever had a booth at a trade show or conference and felt like you may not have...
  • Blog Post: The Rookie Gets a Hit...

    Lajuane Brooks from Ngen writes in after completing her first event: Because we are like so many Microsoft partners who are relatively small with their resources already committed, I realized about 30 days before the event that I needed more resources to help me make the calls and follow-up on...
  • Blog Post: He's got 300,000 customers. How many do you have? 5 Questions with Will Knight...

    Today, we are talking with Will Knight, Director of Mid-Market Marketing, based in Redmond. Continuing our series of interviews (see here , here , and here ) Will is responsible for marketing to 300,000 customers ranging from 50-2000 employees across the United States. He has been doing this for 4 years...
  • Blog Post: Event lessons from a top partner marketer...

    Joan at AKGroup is another one of our success stories. Back in September, she did her first event with us and had 18 people there. Over the course of the year, she's religiously read this blog and joined our Best Practices call. Last week, she had, "by far this our most successful event; in...
  • Blog Post: A Partner's Tale...

    We often talk about how partners can influence the sale of Microsoft products to their customers. You know what really works? Use them yourself! Was talking to a longtime acquaintance today, Mike Petrov (it's his birthday) from DigitEdge . He's got customers like Bloomingdales, March of Dimes,...
  • Blog Post: One Hit Wonder...or the Genesis of a great marketing org?

    I think the latter, but time will tell, of course. Matt and the team from Guru ran their first event today co-marketing with Microsoft. I stopped by to see how it would go. Here's my analysis. On the Pro-Side 21 of 38 registered customers showed up (higher than average) [ he started early ] 10 of 21...
  • Blog Post: 5 Questions with Larry Brennan: an MS corporate marketing manager shares his wisdom...

    One of the things that I've seen in my time at Microsoft is that there is a big game of "telephone" between corporate Microsoft and partners and the field. Everyone does their best to communicate but with so many hops, things get diluted. Today, we're talking with Larry Brennan. Larry Brennan is a...
  • Blog Post: Event Planning Mistakes...

    Stephanie at Data Management Group saw the success that some of our other partners have had running events (see here , here , and here ) Unfortunately, things didn't go as planned, and they had to cancel. I asked Stephanie what she learned from this experience (what would have been her first event) and...
  • Blog Post: Perception matters...

    I tell partners often... your ability to successfully market with Microsoft is greatly impacted by one key variable: the degree to which you influence the sale of Microsoft licenses. That's why I LOVE seeing this signature file. Even if they don't sell anything, at least I know they are trying...
  • Blog Post: Customer Blitz Day....

    So I spent the day doing what I ask partners to do all the time....calling up customers and asking them to attend an event (and buy software). I had a slight advantage perhaps in saying I am an MS employee, but other than that they were just as cold. Most of them were small, some really small, businesses...
  • Blog Post: Yet ANOTHER resource...

    One of the benefits of being in the top 10% of all Microsoft blogs is that people throughout the company want to leverage the distribution to communicate with partners about stuff they are doing. Today I found out about RSVP magazine for the first time. It is offered by Microsoft Partner Events and claims...
  • Blog Post: On hard work and event mileage...

    See the video here. If there is a success story from the slew of April Events we did, it has got to be the team from Digerati in Harrisonburg. They began their marketing a bit late (5 weeks prior to the event) and with 10 days until the event, they had only 3 people signed up. It was their first...
  • Blog Post: The "Wow" and Marketing Speak...

    My brother, Asher, is one of the harshest critics of new technologies. He's an early adopter, but he really puts things to the test in terms of value before he proclaims them worthwhile. He came over yesterday and I showed him my new laptop. "I haven't seen Vista or Office 2007." Three minutes later...
  • Blog Post: When legal gets in the way of business...

    A number of partners have written in about how the Click to Attend site hinders registration. Today, I got an answer....and I can't say I'm thrilled. I am sure there is a valid reason (in the mind of the legal team, risk, etc.), but to think that we're making it more difficult for our mutual customers...
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