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Verizon, CenturyLink, AT&T at WTG Event: Partners, Education Key to Digital Transformation

WTG TEE & SEA — There’s a price to pay for the businesses that neglect the next wave of technology.

WTG’s Cory Dzbinksi

The companies that ignore digital transformation will lose 12 percent of revenue on average, according to McKinsey & Company. The adopters, however, will likely see a 16 percent revenue increase — and that’s a 28 percent upswing.

Cory Dzbinski, WTG training development manager, shared these numbers with partners at the WTG Tee & Sea event Friday. Notable channel figures from Verizon, CenturyLink, and AT&T joined him on stage as he moderated a digital-transformation panel.

There’s a hall of fame for businesses that successfully pivoted their products and services, but there’s a graveyard of companies that refused to evolve.

Lego made a successful transition from simply manufacturing plastic toys to producing video games and movies. GE used Internet of Things (IoT) technology to build analytics and connectivity into its products. But Circuit City and Blockbuster are cautionary tales of the laggards.

“Where all of you sit, and where we sit working with you, we can help businesses optimize their own business to get better, to become more competitive for their future. If they don’t, they’re going to fall behind,” said Kevin Leonard, AT&T’s vice president of alternate channels and leader of the AT&T Alliance Channel.

AT&T's Kevin Leonard

AT&T’s Kevin Leonard

For the businesses that WTG partners serve, marketing is one of the areas where digitization is crucial. Studies show that video is becoming the dominant medium on the internet and, therefore, one of the components of a successful marketing email.

WTG's Vince Bradley

WTG’s Vince Bradley

WTG CEO Vince Bradley said security is one of the obvious technologies that’s begging to be adopted. There’s no shortage of headlines about data breaches, and the Internet of Things is driving concern for securing devices. Yet he says distribution is very slow reaching SMBs with security services.

“We’re not even talking about it with them,” he said. “And someone else is going to step in there.”

There’s resistance to change. Many businesses don’t have a digital-transformation strategy. A Smart Insights study found that 9 percent of businesses have had a plan in place for two years, 21 percent have just started, and 37 percent don’t plan to implement a digital-transformation program. In some cases, this is because they aren’t intentionally considering it. In other cases, they are weighing the cost.

“The problem with most companies is people don’t want to do it. Because it requires a capital outlay. It requires somebody managing it and taking the time to say, ‘I’m going to have to …

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