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Great business building content for VARs and MSPs

Just back from the ChannelNEXT East two-day conference that was jam-packed with fantastic content to help VARs and MSPs build a bigger, better and stronger business. We got a lot of thumbs-up from the attendees!

You can see all of the video coverage on www.ecntv.tv. Here is a brief recap of what happened at ChannelNEXT:

1. The panel speakers Matthew Koenig from RapidFire, Randal Wark from VARMasterMind, Jim Hamilton from CompTIA and Kristian Wright from Inbay answered questions from the audience on a wide variety of topics ranging from tactics, sales, marketing, competition, operations etc.

2. I presented version 3.0 of my presentation on the Top 12 trends that are driving the channel’s future and what you must do to future-proof your business. A few important things I have learnt from the most successful VARs and MSPs as well as other industry leaders.

3. With a new logo and a $187 million investment, Storagecraft is on the fast track to boost its channel growth in the projected $6.6 billion market by 2020. They unveiled a $10,000 guaranteed recovery penalty if they fail to recover the data within 24 hours (see them for details). And, some additional channel discounts for deal registrations. StorageCraft won Best In Show Vendor!

4. A new “right-outsource” Network Operations Centre for MSPs called MSP1Servcies was launched exclusively at the event. It will help MSPs scale their technical support team and capabilities while saving a lot of cost. It will help VARs get into the MSP game faster with less risk and work. That is just the tip of the iceberg of support that this organization will bring to the channel.

5. Data Deposit Box may be the best kept secret in BDR. This company has been doing data management for about 15 years and have recently revamped their push into the channel. Lots of new things are coming out from this company including integrated back-up for mobile devices.

6. VARMasterMind is offering three distinct tracks for the channel – traction, growth and optimization. Each educational/training track is designed to help the VAR or MSP improve their business. You are not alone! These folks can help you rock your business, save costly mistakes and make more money. There is also a special “transform your business to managed services” program if you need step by step support. Topping this off is a special Facebook group to get anytime advice on your IT business…Keep watching as we expand this resource to complement VAROfficeSuite and VARCoach!

7. Datto continues to demonstrate why they are the one to watch in channel for BDR. They are adding new solutions to enhance their offering. With a 100% channel focus, this company should definitely be on your shortlist of partnership considerations. Michael DePalma won the Best Keynote presentation award.

8. TP-Link, new exhibitor for us, showcased a wide variety of networking products and solutions for SMB and consumer. They also showcased a line of exciting products for the smart-home market. With its huge manufacturing background, this looks like a company to watch in the channel.

9. Epson highlighted their smart projector board for meetings and collaboration. An amazing way to collaborate and share content. They also presented their monochrome lineup of printers. Their big ink capacities makes Epson a leader in lower cost-per-page. It’s what the market is demanding. The Epson team also won for best gold meeting room presentation.

10. HP showcased their comprehensive hardware solutions with way too many product enhancements to list. As the dust is settling after the 2-company split, the HP team is resetting into the channel to continue its expansion. We also showcased our exclusive iBiz web store for HP product that any HP partner can customize to market and sell online. The content streams in real time directly from HP and you buy from all your favourite authorized HP distributors.

Okay, I think I will stop at here at these 10 points because I can go on and on…If you are a VAR or MSP and did not attend this event, you may have lost some big opportunities. You really need to attend to get the full story and inside scoop as I can only give you a little taste into what you missed. I invite you to explore the vendors directly to learn more. You also missed some good times, great food, amazing location and karaoke! What a blast! Thanks to everyone who attended and to our sponsors who made this a huge success! Next event is in Ontario on May 16-17 and we are almost fully booked! 

One more thing…you should check out Best Managed IT Companies. If you are a VAR or MSP and want to know your strengths and weaknesses in best business practices, then take the free test! If you are a vendor and looking for the right stuff to help your current channel partners to improve their businesses to sell more of your stuff, then simply point them to the web site to learn and get the support that they need. The VARs and MSPs with the 50 highest scores will also get a Best 50 Managed IT Companies Award…seriously cool!