The ChannelPro SMB Forum resumed its in-person conference series in Dallas on June 9, after a year-plus shift to virtual-only events due to the pandemic. Attendees from Texas and surrounding states at the event, which was also livestreamed for virtual participants, heard a stellar lineup of presenters reflect on challenges and opportunities in the IT industry and provide actionable advice for capitalizing on current technology trends. MSPs, IT consultants, VARs, and integrators who attended also had the opportunity to interact with panelists, network with peers, and browse the vendor expo.
“Coming off a year like no other, our 2021 SMB Forum events are all about learning from 2020’s challenges and profiting from future opportunities in cloud computing, security, managed services, and beyond,” said Rich Freeman, executive editor of The ChannelPro Network. “The ability to gather in person once again to exchange ideas and have casual conversations with MSP peers is something we appreciate even more now.”
The educational sessions included:
Secrets to Bigger Cloud Margins – Margins on cloud services, according to conventional wisdom, are always and permanently slim. Channel pros Sam Barhoumeh, Corey Kirkendoll, and Jamison West shared how they are proving that stereotype wrong.
Peer to Peer: The New Normal MSP – What separates channel pros who struggled with last year’s recession from those who were ready for the challenge and are now thriving in the new normal? In 1:1 Q&As, two top-performing MSPs, Juan Fernandez and Peter Melby, provided their perspective.
Principles of Zero-Trust Security – Everyone says a zero-trust strategy is the only way to secure work-from-home environments and everything else. What does that mean in practice though? Our panel of security experts, Chris Loehr, Bruce McCully and Michael O'Hara, provided practical, concrete advice on building a zero-trust architecture.
Stump the Sales Pro – Sales expert Mike Schmidtmann provided real-time, real-world advice on the thorniest sales and marketing challenges from our audience.
The Channel Pro’s Strategic Roadmap to Success – Market-leading channel pros don’t get there by accident. Business coach Manuel Palachuk outlined the four steps best-in-class IT providers take to build and execute a winning business strategy.
“It’s great to be back on the road and connecting with local MSPs, integrators, and other channel pros, and we’re grateful for the sponsors that make that possible,” said Michael Siggins, president and publisher of The ChannelPro Network. “As we move toward a post-pandemic future that gets brighter every day, ChannelPro is privileged to bring together the channel community and present top-notch, meaningful events designed to help attendees with all aspects of their business.”
The Southwest ChannelPro SMB Forum concluded with attendees honoring vendor sponsors with the following awards:
- Best in Show – Datto
- Best Cloud Solution – US Signal
- Best Hardware Solution – Cambium Networks
- Best New Solutions – Graphus, SKOUT, Zorus (tie)
- Most Innovative Solution – ThreatLocker
- Best Partner Community – Datto
- Best Software Solution – Liongard
- Best Revenue Booster – ThreatLocker
- Best Add-on Product – Huntress
- Best On-Stage Presentation– Rick Jordan
- Best Expo Hall Presentation (Gold and Above) – GreenLink
- Best Expo Hall Presentation (Silver) – Liongard
- Best Distributor – Ingram Micro
- Best IoT Solution – Nodeware
- Best Product/Tech Support – Datto