… simplicity, being easy to understand. We’ve got two levels and very clear requirements in terms of graduating to the upper tier; we make it easy for partners to get in and start to work with us at the entry level. That was focus No. 1.
No. 2, we wanted to make sure that we put together a support infrastructure. Not only people – we’ve got a very comprehensive support team with our channel account managers, our inside sales folks, our field engineers and our marketing team – but also online tools.
We’ve picked up a number of tools and platforms that really help provide an expanded partner marketing center that is able to nurture campaigns, social media, webinars and other events and platforms. It’s available to our partners at no charge to help them take the next step in their marketing activities, so that’s pretty exciting as well.
For the reseller program, we put incentives in place to reward partners that invest in our program and in the relationship. We want to provide a basis for our partners to sell across the portfolio.
We also put in place a value-oriented program that provides additional incentives, like deal registration, as they become specialized in the different product portfolios. Again, the more they invest in us, and the more we invest together, the more money and incentives are available to them.
On the MSP side, it’s very similar, really. We want to make it easy. MSPs want to be able to manage their customers across a number of solution sets through a single portal, and that’s where we’ve been spending a lot of time.
The MSP space is growing globally at a rate that’s very exciting for us. We see huge opportunity there; backup, recovery and availability services need to be in every MSP’s portfolio.
CP: Would you say that growth is mostly a result of existing MSPs coming into the program, or do you see resellers and VARs starting to add these services?
JW: We certainly have a base of what I would call “pure MSPs,” where they have their own infrastructure, that’s all they do, and they’ve chosen Carbonite as the platform to offer their customers data-protection services. We certainly want to keep growing that base of our partner ecosystem. But you’re absolutely right — I think every VAR out there, or service provider, whatever you want to label them, will tell you that they’re also MSPs. They have to be.
We’re seeing a nice blend of those partners in our ecosystem, and we want to make sure we accommodate those different MSP models. Our management modules and APIs allow those, what I’ll call “hybrid partners,” to participate in a number of different ways. “One size” is not the right way to go.
CP: To pivot to the technology, there’s long been pushback against putting storage and backup and disaster recovery in one bucket. These are separate functions, and they need to be treated as such. Have you seen your technology evolve to be able to serve multiple purposes?
JW: Great question. Partners need a grid in terms of …