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Acer America
Acer America Corp. is a computer manufacturer of business and consumer PCs, notebooks, ultrabooks, projectors, servers, and storage products.

Location

333 West San Carlos Street
San Jose, California 95110
United States

WWW: acer.com

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News & Articles

October 21, 2014 |

Latest Study Finds More IT Channel Companies Taking Ownership of Branding and Marketing

CompTIA’s “Fourth Annual State of the Channel Study” spotlights the latest findings on branding and marketing trends within the IT channel.

IT channel companies are becoming more self-reliant when it comes to branding, marketing, and sales activities, according to a new study released by CompTIA, the IT industry association.

The move to take greater control comes at a time when channel firms are being pushed in new directions by technologies such as cloud computing, by customers demanding different delivery models for IT solution, and by the emergence of a more varied lineup of competitors.

“Many channel firms have learned that they can’t run their business today the way they once did, even in the recent past,” says Carolyn April, senior director, industry analysis, CompTIA.

CompTIA’s “Fourth Annual State of the Channel” study examines the size, shape, and growth factors impacting the IT channel today. Some 350 IT companies were surveyed for the study.

Rebranding the Business

A majority of channel firms plan to up their marketing game, including individualizing their branding and fine-tuning their messaging to customers. Of those surveyed, more than 70% are increasing their use of social media, 36% are using Social Media to target/market to non-IT executives, 40% are using sales training to help reps sell to non-IT executives, and 25% are hiring sales reps with vertical experience to help specialize. Their goal: to position themselves as skillful, unique providers of technology services rather than simply product resellers.

“Most customers are not knocking on the door to ask what brand of product you’re selling,” says April. “They want to know what expertise you have and why you’re different than the guy down the street.”

Changes in Sales Structures

The shift away from product-based reselling to a company reliant on recurring services revenue is having an impact on sales operations.

A net 47 percent of companies surveyed said the addition of new business models will increase the complexity of their sales and marketing structures. A net 74 percent added to their sales forces in the past 12 months, while nearly as many (72 percent) added marketing talent.

“Many channel firms have embraced a hybrid model, selling some products and some services,” notes April. “The structure of their sales teams may take on a similar look, with some reps excelling at product sales and others at service contracts.”

In fact, among companies that added new sales reps in the last year, two-thirds of firms hired from outside the IT industry.

More data from the study is available on SlideShare at http://www.slideshare.net/comptia/comptia-4th-state-of-it-channel-study. The complete study is available at no cost to CompTIA registered users.


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