Message to Microsoft Partners: It’s Time to Jump-Start Your 2019/2020 Digital Marketing Strategy
If you’ve ever had the unfortunate experience of finding that you’ve inadvertently left a dome light on in your car, only to discover that your battery is dead when you return to your car later, then you know what jump-starting is.
The Merriam-Webster Dictionary offers this meaning: To start an engine or vehicle via a connection to an external power source (such as another vehicle's battery).
And while jump-start it is often used in a generic sense, I like the car battery definition. Because more often than not, your marketing strategy can run low on energy and require an external power source to keep it going.
So what’s your marketing strategy? Or do you even have one?
Step 1 is to have a marketing strategy. Step 2 is to make sure that it’s aligned with Microsoft’s. Why? Because Microsoft keeps zooming forward at the speed of light and the best advice that I can give you is: If you can’t beat them, join them.
Of course, as a Microsoft partner, you have unique areas of expertise that you want to capitalize on. You have your own value proposition based on years in the Microsoft channel. I’m not saying that you need to abandon that. But Microsoft will be pouring R&D and marketing dollars into their priorities. So the closer you align, the more you will de facto benefit.
If you understand Microsoft’s direction for the year and years ahead, you can ride Microsoft’s deep-pocketed coattails to your own advantage.
Inspired by Inspire
Let’s look at some of the key takeaways from Inspire 2019.
1 - We heard several presenters gush about Teams, the newest Microsoft collaboration tool that they’ve told us is the fastest-growing application in the company’s history! Read between the lines, and you’ll understand the message, which is: Get on board, the sooner, the better. How hard could it be to add Teams to your marketing strategy? Not very hard at all.
2 - The second message that came through loud and clear is digital democratization, i.e., every company is becoming a technology company. As such, we were told that the hiring of software engineers is growing 11% faster in non-tech industries than in the tech sector. This means that some of your clients may be developing software on their own, which could mean that they will be less dependent on you. Is this a message that you should take to heart? You bet you should.
3 - A third theme revolves around Azure cloud migrations. Windows Server 2008 reaches its end of support on January 2020, and SQL Server 2008 just passed its own support deadline earlier this month. Microsoft wants its partners to know that they should be moving those customers to the Azure cloud. Microsoft puts the market opportunity for those migrations at $50 billion. How big a piece of that $60 billion would you like to have?
Get a helping hand
Incorporating all 3 of the above, not to mention several more initiatives that Microsoft emphasized at Inspire, into your digital marketing strategy won’t happen without a plan. Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither was your marketing engine. Fortunately, this is an area where Marketing Monarchs excels. We were proud to see that several of our clients won awards at Inspire 2019. And we’d like to see you on the dais next year!